Book Review - Three Women


Three Women by Lisa Taddeo

I have to admit that it wasn’t an immediate love affair with this book. There was a time when I put it down before I gave it another chance. But it took that second attempt to really get into it and love it. The reviews for Three Women tend to be on either sides of the extreme; one being an adoring love for it and the other detesting it. I think I lie somewhere in between. I really, really liked it. I really did and it has probably been one of my favourite reads of the summer (and is definitely my all time favourite cover!) but there are a fair amount of things I didn’t like about the book also. 

Three Women follows the sex lives of three ordinary women with very different stories but they all revolve around one thing; how much the men in their lives suck. These women are known by Sloane, Lina and Maggie, whose stories are based on real events over a decade. Like many books with more than one narrative, I enjoyed some more than others. Maggie, for me, was the stand out narrative. I felt the most invested in her character and in her story. Lina, I thought, started out strong but for me she got more and more insufferable and the more I wanted to shake some reality into her. THE MAN IS TRASH LINA. LITERAL TRASH. I also found that I didn’t really connect with Sloane’s story. Perhaps because I couldn’t find anything in her that I could relate to. But none of these narratives were ‘bad’. They all had distinct stories, all of which were very raw and very real tales about female desire, which I haven’t seen done in this way before. 

In terms of writing, for the most part I thought it was beautifully written. Until I came across a sex scene, and there was a lot of them (plucking? really!?). I found Lina’s sex scenes particularly difficult to read, as there were some descriptions that I thought were a bit unnatural and some imagery that was, in my opinion, pretty gross. But hey, whatever you’re into, Lina. Part of me thinks this might have been intentional, that these scenes were supposed to make you feel uncomfortable in some way. But at least there weren’t any male writers badly describing the female body. So at least that was a plus. 

This book definitely isn’t for everyone. If you’re more of a plot driven person, you might find Three Women a bit long and slow. There’s also not much of an ending, much like with reality, life just goes on. There isn’t any closure which could be frustrating for some readers.

Overall, despite the things I didn’t like about this book I really enjoyed it. I’m still thinking about it days after reading it and I think it will stay with me for a long time. I think it’s the type of book that will open doors for similar works, and I highly recommend that you read this book if it sounds like something you would enjoy.

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