I have Connecticut sensibilities: I'm not overly friendly, no one would ever describe me as laid-back, and living in La La land for me would be like living on the moon. So, naturally, the California lifestyle fascinates yet repels me. If you feel the same, you must check out Woman Number 17. It's quintessential SoCal - rich, arty lives perched in the Hollywood Hills and unique, dysfunctional lives that will grow on you. You may have to Google a few phrases - Hottentot Venus for example - but learning and reading go hand-in-hand! This novel is offbeat, smart and tender so, like, read it.— Mary T
Thick with tension, this novel lets the relationships and secrets between its characters build slowly to a simmering intensity that mirrors the sultry heat of its Hollywood Hills setting. Lady Daniels and her newly hired nanny S form an unconventional and intense friendship as they both find themselves questioning their present circumstances. Filled with sharp ideas about art and LA, this novel is smart, brilliant, and frequently hilarious. Before you know it, you'll find yourself liking both complicated women, even as they make choices that beg you to turn your back on them.— Kelly
“Woman No. 17 is propulsive and moving, and considers vital questions with empathy and sly intelligence…[A] winning novel.”
— New York Times Book Review
"A story packed with such wicked and wickedly funny confessions about a host of hallowed subjects...Woman No. 17 tastes like a juice box of suburban satire laced with Alfred Hitchcock. Lepucki’s witty lines arrive as dependably as afternoon playtime, but her reflection on motherhood and women’s friendships is deadly serious...The disclosures that Lepucki engineers in this smart novel are sometimes painful, sometimes hilarious, always irresistible."
— Ron Charles, Washington Post
“Lepucki’s exploration of personal relationships takes on an increasingly noirish tone: Much like Chekhov’s gun, a swimming pool introduced early in the book takes on the shadows of a floating body long before the reader realizes this might be a possibility.”
"Edan Lepucki's Woman No. 17 is part family melodrama, part twisty self-reflection... very funny."
"While Woman No. 17 does possess all the trappings of a frothy page-turner — stormy arguments, showy melodrama, and (oops!) an affair, there are some quiet, serious moments, too. It’s the intersection between the two that makes this read both scintillating and thought-provoking.”
— San Francisco Chronicle
"A sexy family drama featuring dual protagonists as well as sex, art, mothers and mutism."
— Los Angeles Daily News
"Following the success of her debut novel, California, author Edan Lepucki returns with a dark and clever tale about motherhood and the complexity of friendships."
“Woman No. 17 reads like a Hollywood Hills film noir... the dialogue is sharp, the fragrance of the wilting air palpable."
— Seattle Times
"With Woman No. 17, Lepucki has succeeded in revealing a simple truth: mothers are human—flawed and difficult and impossible to hold at arm’s length."
"Female friendships, artists, twisted secrets, motherhood, and the posh and drama-filled hills of Los Angeles — if that doesn't sound like a novel your mom will literally gobble up in a day or two, we give up. This risqué and mesmerizing read by New York Times bestselling author Edan Lepucki will make your mom race through the addictive pages of Woman No. 17 in no time (and we wouldn't be surprised if she rereads it again and again)."
"Tensions are expertly spun by Edan Lepucki through the heat of the end of summer in LA... Woman No. 17 starts and finishes in the here and now, and shows up the fragility of the facade of civilization that we all in the Western world, be it in American or Europe, like to think we hold up."
— Electric Literature
"Woman No. 17 offers not only a propulsive plot but also important reflections on artistic creation, the lingering effects of bad mothers on their adult children, and the thorny question of how friends and family relate to their loved ones with disabilities."
"Both fun to read and asks serious questions about identity, art and motherhood."
"Edan Lepucki’s second novel an exceptional offering... a sleek, perspective-shifting tale driven by the complexities of relationship dynamics, the notion of identity and the importance/absurdity of modern art and its impact... a taut tightrope walk of a novel."
— Maine Edge
“[A] Hollywood noir about the electric bonds between women… this one is a safe bet for beach season.”
– The Week
“Woman No. 17 is a novel about motherhood, an impossible game to win…The parallel stories of Lady and S speeding toward disaster keep the pages turning, but the primary pleasure of Woman No. 17 comes from Lepucki’s wit... This novel, coming on the heels of the dystopian California, suggests that Lepucki is an author with a diverse palate and talent to burn.”
“Lepucki’s brisk style and arresting characterizations make for a compelling portrait of womanhood in the present moment, right down to its intriguing integration of social media.”
“An acidly inquisitive domestic drama set in the Hollywood Hills and anchored to depthless questions of identity, family, and art... Lepucki’s arch and provocative tale of elaborate and privileged dysfunction poses sharp questions about inheritance, self-expression, and love.”
“Always enjoyable…this novel succeeds by staying light on its feet.”
“In Woman No. 17, Lepucki has crafted an intricate, gripping story of people behaving very badly. You will want to race to the end to see what happens, but don’t cheat yourself. This book deserves to be savored –gorgeously written, darkly comic, smart and thrilling.”
– CYNTHIA D’APRIX SWEENEY, New York Times bestselling author of The Nest"Woman No. 17 fizzes with references to contemporary culture and sparks with larger, timeless questions: Where is the line between performance and identity? What separates life from art? And can we ever escape the gravitational pull of our parents? Edan Lepucki shows herself to be a sharp-eyed chronicler of our modern world."