After driving across the country six times with her eyes peeled for subjects willing to talk about their sex lives "on the record and without holding back," Lisa Taddeo gained the trust of the trio of her first book’s title, Three Women. She distilled thousands of hours of communication with these women into dexterous and suspenseful third-person narratives.
One subject is Maggie, who as a 17-year-old high school senior began an affair with her English teacher, a married father in his late 20s. When he's named Teacher of the Year, Maggie finally tells her parents and the police what happened. Another subject is Lina, a stay-at-home mom who begins an affair when her husband's sexual disinterest drags on for three months: she starts sleeping with her high school boyfriend, who treats her terribly. Taddeo’s third subject is Sloane, who works at a restaurant she co-owns with her husband. He adores sleeping with her--and also watching her have sex with other men.
With Three Women, a heavyweight and a knockout both, Taddeo makes it possible for each woman to be the agent of her own storytelling, and the book's very existence insists that they are to be believed. --Nell Beram