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What To Read If You Loved Three Women, By Lisa Taddeo

Three Women by Lisa Taddeo is the non-fiction title everyone is talking about right now – and for good reason. Offering a refreshing and riveting consideration of female sexuality, girlhood, womanhood and motherhood in a creative prose, it explores the interiority of three women; revealing their unspoken thoughts, disappointments and deepest desires.

If you’ve read the book and are now looking for other stories centred around the female experience, we’ve rounded up a selection we think you’ll love.

What Red Was by Rosie Price

Through their four years at university, Kate and Max are inseparable. For him, she breaks her solitude and for her, he leaves his busy circles behind. However, loving Max means knowing his family and the wealthy Rippons are full of generosity, social ease and quiet repression. Their world is not Kate’s world.

What Red Was explores the effects of trauma on mind and body, the tyrannies of memory and the courage of a young woman in speaking out. This is a startling novel of modern love and toxic inheritance from a brilliant new British voice.

My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

Vanessa Wye was fifteen years old when she first slept with her English teacher. She is now thirty-two and in the storm of allegations against powerful men in 2017 – and the same teacher has just been accused of sexual abuse by another student.

Forced to rethink her past, Vanessa has to redefine the great love story of her life and deal with the possibility that she might be a victim, and just one of many.

Nuanced, uncomfortable, bold and powerful, My Dark Vanessa goes straight to the heart of some of the most complex issues of our time. This is a book that will spark consideration, discussion and debate.

The Group by Lara Feigel

(Available from July)

Lara Feigel’s first novel, The Group, is a fiercely intelligent book that follows a group of female friends nearing the age of forty. Who has children and who doesn’t? Whose marriages are working, whose aren’t, and who has embarked on completely different models of sexuality and relationships? Who has managed to fulfil their promise, whose life has foundered and what do they think about it, either way?

This is a captivating exploration of modern female life and friendship, and a deep dive into female characters in an age that may or may not have been changed by various forms of feminism.

Heatstroke by Hazel Barkworth

It is too hot to sleep. To work. To be questioned time and again by the police.
At the beginning of a stifling, sultry summer, everything shifts irrevocably when Lily doesn’t come home one afternoon.

Rachel is Lily’s teacher. Her daughter Mia is Lily’s best friend. The girls are fifteen – almost women, still children. As Rachel becomes increasingly fixated on Lily’s absence, she finds herself breaking fragile trusts and confronting impossible choices she never thought she’d face.

Intoxicating, bold and compulsive, Heatstroke is a thought-provoking novel of crossed boundaries, power and betrayal, that plays with expectations at every corner. Barkworth pulls the reader right into the epicentre of a love affair that was never supposed to happen.

City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert

It is the summer of 1940. Nineteen-year-old Vivian Morris arrives in New York with her suitcase and sewing machine, exiled by her despairing parents. Although her quicksilver talents with a needle have been deemed insufficient in the past, she soon finds employment as a seamstress at the Lily Playhouse – a charmingly disreputable Manhattan revue theatre. There, Vivian quickly becomes the toast of the showgirls, transforming the trash and tinsel only fit for the cheap seats into creations for goddesses.

Exile in New York is no exile at all: here in this strange wartime city of girls, Vivian and her girlfriends mean to drink the heady highball of life itself to the last drop. And when a legendary English actress comes to the Lily to star in the company’s most ambitious show ever, Vivian is entranced by the magic that follows in her wake. But there are hard lessons to be learned, and bitterly regrettable mistakes to be made.

From the # 1 New York Times bestselling author of Eat Pray Love and The Signature of All Things, this is an addictive novel about daring to break conventions and follow your desires.

Adults by Emma Jane Unsworth

Jenny is unloved, unemployable and emotionally unfiltered. Her long-suffering friends seem sick of her and whilst her social media portrays her life as a bed of roses, it is more of a dying succulent.

Adults is a hilarious and heartbreaking misadventure of maturity, a satire on our age of self-promotion and a tender look at the impossibility of womanhood. It explores the age of living online and trying to find yourself in real life – it’s an essential read for you and every woman you know.

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