Three Women

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Member Reviews

A fascinating, insightful, honest and visceral book.  A frank and forthright telling of three women's sexual lives and the role their formative years played in making them the women they are.

Not always an easy read but a book that needs to be read if only to pull you up on the judgements you make regarding other peoples lives and lifestyles.  I often found myself questioning my own position as reader and voyeur on these women lives but Maggie, Lina and Sloane's voices are so clear and well presented and with such compassion by Lisa that this book steers clear of being salacious.
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Three Women is like nothing I've ever read before, a gripping, unflinching account that kept me riveted from start to finish. It is beautifully written and brutally honest. It forced me to think long and hard about my own relationship and the reactions i have had to other women and their choices. I related most closely to Lina but I believe Maggie's story is the most interesting because of the huge injustice at the heart of it. If I have any criticisms they would be just two. Firstly that the women are not fully rounded out as personalities; I understand this is because the focus is on desire and the impact it has had on their lives. Even so, I felt interested to know more about their characters. Secondly, there is not much closure and in particular I wondered for Maggie and Lina, what happened next? All in all, fantastic, original, thought-provoking work and highly recommended.
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I absolutely adore this book. Moving, mesmerizing and totally devastating, I never wanted it to end. My non-fiction book of the year - more from Lisa Taddeo, please.
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I did wonder if I was reading a different book to everyone else. All those glowing reviews, but it didn't do it for me.
This was the true stories of three women, one of whom was “groomed” by her teacher, another was in a sexless marriage and the third in a form of open marriage.
The link to all these was that they were coerced. 
I found that skipping between the three stories difficult. It would have been much easier to have told each one in full. You would start to get into the story when it changed and you had to remember them all as you were going along. It broke the rhythm for me.
The build up to each story took a long time and made for quite harrowing and distressing reading.
It was all very well written, but made for a truly depressing read.
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This book had a profound affect on me and I could not put it down. It was like entering the minds of the different women and experiencing their thoughts and feelings with them as they went through intense experiences in their lives. The fact that the stories were true made it an even more powerful read. This book really made me think about female sexuality, and how women are perceived in relation to their sex lives. This book also encourages you to explore your own opinions on the culpability of others. This is a really thought-provoking read, written in a highly engaging style.
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This book is well-written and compelling but it’s not quite what I was expecting. For me Sloane’s narrative was by far the most interesting and nuanced so it’s a shame it felt more weighted towards Lina and Maggie. I enjoyed the narrative style and the way you can really get a feel for the characters as real people (which of course they are). There are some striking observations about women’s desire and the way society polices it but I was a little bit disappointed that there wasn’t more of this. I found Lina’s narrative painful to read in parts - the feelings are so raw - yet by the end it was quite repetitive, the sex detail became gratuitous,  and I think her story feels quite unfinished. 
I would say I just felt a bit unsatisfied and underwhelmed but overall a solid 3.5 stars.
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I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will be recommending it to friends, family and the goodreads community. It was unlike any book I’ve read before especially because it tells the story of real women in the style of a fiction novel. I found myself getting so drawn into these women’s lives and journeys that I couldn’t wait to pick the book up at the next available opportunity. The writing was so accomplished that you couldn’t help but feel a connection to the characters – the feelings and emotions experienced by these women literally seeped out of every page. Being able to relate to some of these emotions was such a profound experience. A true gem of a book. The only reason I didn’t give it 5 stars is because for my personal taste it got a bit explicit at times. I think the book would’ve been just as powerful without so much of this. Thank you for the opportunity to read an advance review copy.
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Thanks Netgalley and the Publisher.  Not sure what sort of review I can give this book as I finished it but left no lasting impression and to be honest did not really enjoy it,  found it a chore
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What an exciting read.  3 women, how their early lives shaped their adult lives.  Each story is different but in some way the women share some desires and disappointments.  It is one of the books you can't wait to get back to and find out how each woman is getting on. Its so interesting to see how each story builds to a crescendo and then starts to crumble.  The men involved with all three women have their own problems and needs.  Its a book that leaves you wanting to understand more about how all those involved felt after the ending of the different relationships.  Fascinating read.  A book that comes to and end far too soon.
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4.5 stars 

I’m so grateful I had the opportunity to read this book. It received high praise from Dolly Alderton and that woman never disappoints with her recommendations. So, I requested it on a whim and oh my god, what a book.

Three Women comprises unrelated stories about the lives of well, 3 women. Having written this over the course of eight years, flying across the country to interview the women in their hometowns, Taddeo zooms in on the chaotic truths of their sexual desires with unflinching detail. These women are of different social status, are different ages and are from different parts of the country, yet their commonalities are clear. They each seek out something in sex that they were missing in their past. This is a challenging book which dives into the psychology of women, revealing hidden thoughts, desires, obsessions and ultimately, hope.

Taddeo’s writing is enthralling, and I was constantly having to remind myself that this is nonfiction. Reading about their experiences, it wouldn’t be hard to believe that these women are characters that have sprouted from Taddeo’s imagination. I felt for these women. I rooted for them. By the end of the book, I felt I knew them inside and out and I was left itching to know what these women are doing now. 

Furthermore, this book will enrage you. Reading through their experiences, we learn that they are judged by other women despite a man being just as involved in their individual circumstances. They are wrongly shamed for going against societies wishes and for doing as they please. Why? Well, a big part of that is because they’re women. Their desires are muted, exploited and denied by a society that continues to suppress our truths, while it simultaneously sexualises us in other ways. Nonetheless, each of the women demonstrates the ravenous forces that lie within us all, that have for too long been trampled down. 

I don’t read much nonfiction but, even if I did, I don’t think I could compare this book to anything else. I wholeheartedly recommend picking this stunning piece of literary non-fiction up and hope you are as astounded by the bravery of these women to have their stories told to the world as I am.
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I can’t really say what first interested me in this book. I was intrigued by the reviewer mentioning In Cold Blood and having read this book, I can see how the two are connected. Like Capote, Lisa Taddeo doesn’t just tell a story, she shows an in depth understanding of a person - or in this case, three people. Here are three flawed but real people whose lives are bruised by their interactions (generally with the men in their lives) and the choices they make. 
Written in their voices, you feel party to their thoughts and feelings, and bruised by the hurts they endure. I found the book harrowing but redemptive, beautifully worded but never overwritten.
It is three stories - three quite ordinary stories with a universal theme so relevant in the #MeToo world but it never forces a political view because these are real people and real stories and Lisa Taddeo is not only an exceptional writer but one who has tapped into those stories with compassion and power.
I have and will continue to recommend this book to anyone that asks me for a good read. I doubt I will read anything better this year or have a book whose characters speak so clearly to me even as a man.
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Lina, Maggie and Sloane all have different aspirations in life. Nothing impossible but they all seem to have missed out on them.Each one is living a differnt life to what they wanted.
This is a story of hope, love, and obsession.
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Non fiction written almost as a novel intertwines the dysfunctional sex lives of three very different women. Too depressing for me but I’m sure it will be enjoyed by many.
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Well this is one hell of a yes book for me. Three women talking openly about their sexuality & the way they, their family and society have viewed them through that lens. The bravery of these three women speaking so honestly reveals just how much we censor female sexuality still. Out in July - pre order or add to your TBR list fast!
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An honest account and one which illuminates women's sexuality and desire in a way which is seldom discussed. I found "Three Women" to be compulsive reading and found much of it relatable. I think the women who told their stories were brave to come forward and I've no doubt that they will help, encourage and give comfort to others.
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This book is an unflinching study of female sexuality and desire which reads like fiction, but tells the true stories of three women. This book is fascinating, frustrating and heartbreaking all at the same time, and I related to - and empathised with - each of the women in one way or another. With these stories, Taddeo makes some great points about how women view and treat each other:

"Lina understands that some women, like her mother and her sisters, truly care for another woman only when that woman is in pain, especially in a kind of pain that they have already felt, and then overcome."

I found myself particularly caught up with Maggie, who has a relationship with her high school teacher and presses charges against him a few years later. Taddeo's writing was so involving that I couldn't help but feel I understood exactly what she went through and why it affected her so deeply. 

"What the fuck do you know about young women, Maggie thinks. We don't remember what we want to remember. We remember what we can't forget."
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I guess my overriding feeling when I'd finished this incredible book is that the desire to be desired, the need to be loved, the search for a connection that chimes makes women vulnerable. The women who are the subjects Lina, Sloane and Maggie were looking for validation that they were wanted and needed, yet none of them found it. It would be easy to point the finger at men, too easy perhaps as here they don't cover themselves in glory, however, I think we must acknowledge that women generally want more from their sexual relationships than men. A man once said to me that having sex was like quenching a thirst. I remember thinking that this statement simply objectified women, turned them into something to be used for the benefit of men, but I know not all men feel the same. I found the minutiae of thoughts as they experienced profound moments was enlightening. I'm sure these unconnected thoughts have occured to all of us at strange times. Perhaps it's the human way of accepting an action that we know in our psyche is wrong. Disturbing, enthralling and thought provoking.
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I was not very far into this book when I realised it would not be my cup of tea. I know there are those who will say I'm missing a little gem judging by the reviews I've seen so far. However, I have to say that it is beautifully written with stunning visuals and glorious language. For me, it was just the subject matter. I've given it four stars for the quality of the writing.
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It was hard to remember at times that I was reading non fiction; this totally read as a great work of fiction. But when I did remember it truly brought another level to it.
The story, as the title suggests, of three women. Three unrelated  real lives, documented over a few years  Lina is stuck in a loveless marriage who reconnects with her first teenage love. Maggie recalls her troubled teenage years where she finds complicated adulteress love with her schoolteacher leading to him facing charges. And finally Sloan, a married mother of two who, alongside her husband, seeks sexual thrills elsewhere but with full knowledge and often participation of her husband.

Deep themes of love, sex, desire alongside the complexities of characters, their backgrounds, their families. This truly examines the lives of three modern women. Unflinching, very compelling, and brilliant
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A truly inspirational book for modern times. I absolutely loved all the different stories between the three characters and their, sometimes incredibly messed up relationships. Thoroughly enjoyed this xx
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