The Mad Girls of New York by Maya Rodale

"Historical Fiction" genre card with glasses and book photo
"Historical Fiction" genre card with glasses and book photo

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Nellie Bly is by far one of my favorite historical people. I love reading about her, and when I heard about this book, I knew I needed to read it.

The Mad Girls of New York blew away my expectations in the best way! Maya Rodale did a fantastic job of bringing Nellie to life. She was bright and bubbly, strong-willed, and a genius! I loved her spontaneity and her compassion for others. Nellie’s career was filled with amazing stories to help get the stories of women heard, but her 10 days in the madhouse is probably the most famous. I loved getting a play-by-play view of this experience. It was so well-written and basically impossible to put down.

Nellie’s experience on Blackwell Island is awful. The treatment of these women was horrendous, and her courage to be committed to be able to shed light on this was amazing. I absolutely loved reading about it!

The author added actual excerpts from Nellie’s writing, and I appreciated that. I also enjoyed the fictional characters that were added. The author’s note at the end does a wonderful job of separating the fact from fiction for the reader.

I would highly recommend this if you are looking for a fun historical fiction that focuses on the rights of women or if you want to learn more about Nellie Bly!

Where to Find This Book:

Amazon ~ Goodreads

Fearless reporter Nellie Bly will stop at nothing to chase down stories that expose injustices against women—even if it comes at the risk of her own life and freedom—in this exciting novel inspired by the true story of one remarkable woman.

In 1887 New York City, Nellie Bly has ambitions beyond writing for the ladies pages, but all the editors on Newspaper Row think women are too emotional, respectable and delicate to do the job. But then the New York World challenges her to an assignment she’d be mad to accept and mad to refuse: go undercover as a patient at Blackwell’s Island Insane Asylum for Women.

For months, rumors have been swirling about deplorable conditions at Blackwell’s, but no reporter can get in—that is, until Nellie feigns insanity, gets committed and attempts to survive ten days in the madhouse. Inside, she discovers horrors beyond comprehension. It’s an investigation that could make her career—if she can get out to tell it before two rival reporters scoop her story.

From USA Today bestselling author Maya Rodale comes a rollicking historical adventure series about the outrageous intrigues and bold flirtations of the most famous female reporter—and a groundbreaking rebel—of New York City’s Gilded Age.

Just the Facts:

The Mad Girls of New York by Maya Rodale
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Berkley
Pub Date: April 26, 2022


I was provided a gifted copy of this book for free. I am leaving my honest review voluntarily.

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