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These Women: Book summary and reviews of These Women by Ivy Pochoda

These Women

A Novel

by Ivy Pochoda

These Women by Ivy Pochoda X
These Women by Ivy Pochoda
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  • Published in USA  May 2020
    352 pages
    Genre: Thrillers

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About this book

Book Summary

From the award-winning author of Wonder Valley and Visitation Street comes a serial killer story like you've never seen before—a literary thriller of female empowerment and social change.

In West Adams, a rapidly changing part of South Los Angeles, they're referred to as "these women." These women on the corner … These women in the club … These women who won't stop asking questions … These women who got what they deserved …

In her masterful new novel, Ivy Pochoda creates a kaleidoscope of loss, power, and hope featuring five very different women whose lives are steeped in danger and anguish. They're connected by one man and his deadly obsession, though not all of them know that yet. There's Dorian, still adrift after her daughter's murder remains unsolved; Julianna, a young dancer nicknamed Jujubee, who lives hard and fast, resisting anyone trying to slow her down; Essie, a brilliant vice cop who sees a crime pattern emerging where no one else does; Marella, a daring performance artist whose work has long pushed boundaries but now puts her in peril; and Anneke, a quiet woman who has turned a willfully blind eye to those around her for far too long. The careful existence they have built for themselves starts to crumble when two murders rock their neighborhood.

Written with beauty and grit, tension and grace, These Women is a glorious display of storytelling, a once-in-a-generation novel.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Heartbreaking.... This deep dive into the lives of women too often unseen in the shadows makes them vividly unforgettable." - Publishers Weekly, starred review

"Pochoda stuns with this disquieting literary thriller rife with descriptive street language and violence. It is complex, intense, and enthralling." - Library Journal, starred review

"With raw, visceral prose, Pochoda vividly evokes L.A.'s distinctive cityscape and the burdens and threats women face there." - Booklist

"Gritty, sometimes cheesy, very on-the-nose with its message—but satisfying as a murder mystery." - Kirkus

"Pochoda turns grief, suffering and loss into art, crafting a literary thriller that is no less compelling for its deep emotional resonance." - Vogue

"These Women is full of resilient and undaunted characters that society often doesn't give a second look to. But Ivy Pochoda does and in these pages she gives us the small story that grows so large in meaning and emotion as to transcend genre. It tells us how to look at ourselves and at what is important." - Michael Connelly, author of Fair Warning

"I can promise you will not easily forget the women in this book. This is Ivy Pochoda at the height of her power—to slip inside the psyche of women at the margins; to, with a conjurer's flair, capture the voices of multiple characters with pitch perfect grace; and to craft a bendy, surprising, page-turning tale.  It's brilliantly plotted and beautifully written." - Attica Locke

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Reader Reviews

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lani

Gritty and powerful
Once in a while, if you are lucky, a novel comes along that leaves you breathless and stunned. Pochoda's book threw me down a whirlpool sucking me under . Using descriptive street language ,the author explores the life of five different women who live in southwestern LA, a section known as "the corner." These very different women tell their individual stories in very explicit visual language but have the commonality of living through past and current violence . They are judged by police and the world by the color of their skin and /or by their occupation. When two girls are murdered in their neighborhood, their past surpassed pain dissolves and their connection to a serial killer surfaces. There is peril, brutality,grittiness and power in their words that felt so pictorial and real. I was living in their neighborhood;I felt immersed in their feelings. When the book ended, after I put everything aside for the whole evening, I just sat still, amazed, bereft and finally privileged that Pochoda offered an experience like no other. If I could rate this to the googolplex power I would. Admittedly, if you don't like audacious fierce novels, you might pause before reading this book. But for the others, run, run, run

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Author Information

Ivy Pochoda Author Biography

Photo: Justin Nowell

Ivy Pochoda is the author of the critically acclaimed novel Visitation Street published by Ecco / Dennis Lehane Books. Visitation Street was chosen as an Amazon Best Book of the Month, Amazon Best Book of 2013, and a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection. Her writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Review of Books, The Huffington Post, Self, and House & Garden. Her first novel The Art of Disappearing, was published by St. Martin's Press in 2009. She has a BA from Harvard College in Classical Greek and an MFA from Bennington College in fiction.

Ivy grew up in Brooklyn, NY and currently lives in downtown Los Angeles with her husband Justin Nowell.

Link to Ivy Pochoda's Website

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