Hazel Greenlee is broken. Her dreams of being a published author seem distant, she’s living in a Wisconsin’s most crime ridden city, and her marriage is less than stellar. When she gets a new job as a transcriber for the local police station, Hazel is not only dragged into a gruesome murder but is forced to come clean to herself about how suffocated she feels in her life.
This is not your typical crime/detective novel. While the story ultimately follows a crime, the path to getting it solved isn’t our main focal point. Instead Hazel’s will to live is what drives this story. Morrissey has been incredibly successful in make this a majorly depressing book. The melancholy tones mixed in with the dark, gritty, and hopeless atmosphere give readers such a vivid depiction of the town. I could feel Hazel’s unhappiness through the pages.
All of our characters felt realistic to me, especially our main character Hazel. While Hazel is our only narrator, Morrissey did a fabulous job of making all of our supporting characters vivid and relatable. She also gives all of our characters a tremendous amount of character growth which is amazing considering the book is just over 300 pages.
I couldn’t decide between 3 stars or 4 stars for this one but ultimately decided on a 3.5 rating, rounded up to 4 for Goodreads. I enjoyed the buildup and the bit of suspense within the story, but it was a little slow pacing wise and the descriptions while beautifully written could get wordy . I’d still highly recommend this to read though, just know it’s a slow burn and more atmospheric than plot driven.
Trigger warnings: depression, suicide.
Hello, Transcriber comes out November 30, 2021. Huge thank you to Minotaur books for my advanced copy in exchange for my honest review. If you liked this review please let me know either by commenting below or by visiting my Instagram @speakingof_books.