Three Women (book)
First edition cover
|Audio read by||Tara Lynne Barr|
|Subject||Human female sexuality|
|Publisher||Avid Reader Press|
|July 9, 2019|
|Media type||Print (Hardcover)|
|LC Class||HQ801 .T2233 2019|
Three Women is a 2019 non-fiction book by Lisa Taddeo. It is her debut book and was published on July 9, 2019, by Avid Reader Press, an imprint of Simon & Schuster. It covers the sexual and emotional lives of three women from different backgrounds and regions of the United States. It debuted at number one on The New York Times non-fiction best sellers list and received mostly positive reviews from critics.
The book covers the sexuality of three women: Lina, a suburban Indiana mother; Maggie, a seventeen-year-old high school student in North Dakota; and Sloane, a successful restaurant owner in the Northeast whose husband likes to watch her have sex with other men and women. Taddeo spent the past eight years writing the book, driving across the country six times to embed herself in the lives of the three women.
The book received positive reviews according to the review aggregator website Book Marks. It reported that 41% of critics gave the book a "rave" review, while 21% of the critics expressed "positive" impressions, 31% "mixed" reviews, and 7% gave the book a "pan", based on a sample of 29 reviews.
Publishers Weekly gave the book a mixed review, writing, "Unfortunately, all three feel underdeveloped, with no real insight into them or their lives outside of their sexual histories, and with little connective tissue between their stories. Taddeo's immersive narrative is intense, but more voyeuristic than thoughtful."
Kate Tuttle of NPR gave the book a rave review, writing, "Its prose is gorgeous, nearly lyrical as it describes the longings and frustrations that propel these ordinary women. Blending the skills of an ethnographer and a poet, Taddeo renders them extraordinary."
Parul Sehgal of The New York Times praised the book's "boldness" but largely criticized Taddeo's style calling it "faux-literary," writing, "To see language treated so shabbily shakes the reader's confidence; if a writer can't work her way around a sentence or land a metaphor, what assurance have we that she can parse her subjects' traumas, their complex, sometimes inchoate yearnings?"
While The Times' Christina Patterson praised Taddeo's prose writing: "In weaving these stories together, Taddeo paints an electrifying picture of female desire, and of the pain men casually inflict in their pursuit of sexual pleasure. She writes in searing prose that seems to capture every nuance."
Luara Miller of Slate wrote that "What makes Three Women so remarkable and indelible, and also so refreshingly out-of-step with the tenor of the present moment, is Taddeo’s refusal to judge these 'characters.'"
Writing for The New Yorker, Lauren Oyler felt that Taddeo's writing style created "moral ambiguity at the level of the book's form rather than its content", undermining Taddeo's claim that "these three specific women who are in charge of their narratives."
Elizabeth Flock of The Washington Post gave the book a rave review, calling it "exhaustively reported and as elegantly written as Katherine Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers or Adrian Nicole LeBlanc's Random Family."
- "Three Women Audiobook by Lisa Taddeo, Tara Lynne Barr, Marin Ireland, Mena Suvari". Simon & Schuster. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Three Women by Lisa Taddeo". Simon & Schuster. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Combined Print & E-Book Nonfiction - Best Sellers". The New York Times. July 28, 2019. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Combined Print & E-Book Nonfiction - Best Sellers". The New York Times. October 6, 2019. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Hardcover Nonfiction Books - Best Sellers". The New York Times. July 28, 2019. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Hardcover Nonfiction Books - Best Sellers". The New York Times. October 6, 2019. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Three Women". Book Marks. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- "Nonfiction Book Review: Three Women by Lisa Taddeo". Publishers Weekly. April 5, 2019. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- Tuttle, Kate (July 8, 2019). "Debut Book Tells Of The Real-Life Longings And Frustrations Of 'Three Women'". NPR. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- Sehgal, Parul (June 28, 2019). "'Three Women' Takes a Long, Close Look at Sex Lives". The New York Times. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- Patterson, Review by Christina (2019-06-30). "Three Women by Lisa Taddeo review — lays bare the nature of sexual power". ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 2019-12-31.
- Miller, Laura (2019-07-08). "How Sexual Desire Transforms Women's Lives". Slate Magazine. Retrieved 2019-12-31.
- Oyler, Lauren (July 10, 2019). ""Three Women," Reviewed: Lisa Taddeo's Book Puts Sex in the Mirror". The New Yorker. Retrieved October 5, 2019.
- Flock, Elizabeth (July 26, 2019). "Women and desire: It's about so much more than sex". The Washington Post. Retrieved October 5, 2019.