Women Are The Fiercest Creatures by Andrea Dunlop
Published by Zibby Books
Publication date: March 7, 2023
Genres: Book Clubs, Fiction, Chick Lit, Contemporary
Imagine a dating app, like Tinder or OkCupid, but for friends. Specifically designed for women with an algorithm that leads to forming friendships based on like-minded beliefs, similar hobbies (loving books!), any of the elements that go into creating meaningful friendships. That’s the premise behind Andrea Dunlop’s new novel Women Are the Fiercest Creatures.
Jake Sarnoff created Strangers, the app that allowed women to find other women and create communities both online and in real life. Not surprisingly Strangers has gone on to become one of the fastest growing apps in the tech world. Jake and his company stand poised for an IPO, but it’s not his story that gets told in the novel. Instead, it’s his ex-wife, his college girlfriend, and his new wife, who speak from the pages of Women Are the Fiercest Creatures sharing where they are now and where they were in Jake’s life on his path to success and wealth.
Anna is the ex and the mother to Jake’s teenage sons, Ben and Dylan. She’s doing her best to be a supportive co-parent as Jake is pushing for a blended family model with everyone spending time together. He seems to have forgotten that he forced Anna out of their company and cheated on her with his new wife, the young, dewy Jessica. A trophy wife who’s just announced she’s pregnant.
Samanta is Jake’s college girlfriend. She is a single mother and the owner of a thriving yoga studio. She’s shut Jake out of her mind and life after a bad end to their on-again-off-again relationship. But now that he’s in the news for the Strangers’ IPO she finds the past she’s tried so hard to bury coming to the surface.
Dunlop does a good job animating the women in Women Are the Fiercest Creatures. Anna and Samanta are both intriguing with their layers and while Jessica starts off as millennial Barbie, motherhood strips the Instagram filters from her life, bringing reality into sharp focus. In contrast, Jake is a one-note character. Charismatic and entitled, but that’s fine—he’s ancillary and plays his part perfectly.
There’s much to relate to in Women Are the Fiercest Creatures, such as issues of racism and the impact of social media, but the book skates largely on the surface of these topics. Thankfully, while I enjoy exploring difficult subjects, I thoroughly enjoy lighter reading when it’s done well and Women Are the Fiercest Creatures easily succeeds in that way. This is the kind of fast paced, brain candy reading I love.
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*I received a free copy of this book from Zibby Books in exchange for an honest review.*