“Extraordinary…A nonfiction literary masterpiece…I can’t remember the last time a book affected me as profoundly as Three Women.” —Elizabeth Gilbert
“Beautifully written…This is one of the most riveting, assured, and scorchingly original debuts I’ve ever read.” —Dave Eggers
“[An] instant feminist classic...Utterly engrossing...Game-changing” —O, The Oprah Magazine
Desire as you’ve never seen it before: a riveting account of the sex lives of three ordinary American women, based on nearly a decade of reporting.
Lina, a homemaker in suburban Indiana, is a decade into a passionless marriage when she embarks on an affair that quickly becomes all-consuming and transforms her life. Sloane, a glamorous entrepreneur in the northeast, is married to a man who likes to watch her have sex with other men and women. Maggie, a high school student in North Dakota, begins a relationship with her English teacher that will have extraordinary consequences for them both—as well as the community in which they live.
For nearly a decade, Lisa Taddeo, an award-winning journalist and longtime contributor to New York magazine and Esquire, embedded herself with three everyday women to write this deeply immersive account of their erotic lives and longings. The result—shocking, powerful, and timely—reads like George Packer’s The Unwinding, but for the state of female desire. Three Women is a major work from an exhilarating new voice.
Lisa Taddeo has contributed to New York magazine, Esquire, Elle, Glamour, and many other publications. Her nonfiction has been included in the Best American Sports Writing and Best American Political Writing anthologies, and her short stories have won two Pushcart Prizes. She lives with her husband and daughter in Connecticut.
“I can’t remember the last time a book affected me as profoundly as Three Women. Lisa Taddeo is a tireless reporter, a brilliant writer, and a storyteller possessed of almost supernatural humanity. As far as I’m concerned, this is a nonfiction literary masterpiece at the same level as In Cold Blood—and just as suspenseful, bone-chilling, and harrowing, in its own way. I know already that I will never stop thinking about the women profiled in this story—about their sexual desire, their emotional pain, their strength, their losses. I saw myself in all of them. Truly, Three Women is an extraordinary offering.” —Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat Pray Love and City of Girls
“[An] instant feminist classic . . . In this utterly engrossing, frankly game-changing work of narrative nonfiction, a New York magazine contributor profiles a trio of everyday women, shining a light on their darkest desires and how men (and other women) often thwart those wants.” —Michelle Hart, O, The Oprah Magazine
“Three Women is the new required reading for women and any person who wants to know them. Taddeo has given these women’s testimonies of desire, love, and trauma a brilliance and dignity that is nothing short of revolutionary.” —Stephanie Danler, author of Sweetbitter
“This is one of the most riveting, assured, and scorchingly original debuts I’ve ever read. Taddeo’s beautifully written and unflinching portraits of desire allow her protagonists to be wholly human and wholly, blessedly complex. I can’t imagine a scenario where this isn’t one of the more important—and breathlessly debated—books of the year.” —Dave Eggers, author of The Monk of Mokha
“It’s been years since I’ve read a book as propulsive, engrossing, mind-bending, and required as Lisa Taddeo’s Three Women. On the surface, it’s an account of how desire organizes, disrupts, and sometimes threatens to destroy the lives of its three heroines—and that, it seems, is the only way they’d have it. In this age of social media, when the most superficial forms of connection and engagement are touted as their opposites, Three Women reads like an antidote for our technologically-driven isolation and loneliness. It is the deepest dive into our neighbors’ consciousnesses that I’ve ever read, so immersive it approaches the Tolstoyan, and its narcotic pleasures mainline the only thing that can truly save us: empathy.” —Adam Ross, author of Mr. Peanut