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It's a club like no other. Only the most important women receive an invitation. But one daring young reporter is about to infiltrate this female-run secret society, whose beguiling members are caught up in a dark and treacherous business. For years, rumors have swirled about an exclusive, women-only social club where the elite tastemakers of NYC meet. People in the know whi It's a club like no other. Only the most important women receive an invitation. But one daring young reporter is about to infiltrate this female-run secret society, whose beguiling members are caught up in a dark and treacherous business. For years, rumors have swirled about an exclusive, women-only social club where the elite tastemakers of NYC meet. People in the know whisper all sorts of claims: Membership dues cost $1,000 a month. Last time Rihanna was in town, she stopped by and got her aura read. The women even handpicked the city's first female mayor. But no one knows for sure. That is, until journalist Jillian Beckley decides she's going to break into the club. With her career in freefall, Jillian needs a juicy scoop, and she has a personal interest in bringing these women down. But the deeper she gets into this new world--where billionaire "girlbosses" mingle with the astrology-obsessed--the more Jillian learns that bad things happen to those who dare to question the club's motives or giggle at its outlandish rituals. The select group of women who populate the club may be far more powerful than she ever imagined. And far more dangerous too.


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It's a club like no other. Only the most important women receive an invitation. But one daring young reporter is about to infiltrate this female-run secret society, whose beguiling members are caught up in a dark and treacherous business. For years, rumors have swirled about an exclusive, women-only social club where the elite tastemakers of NYC meet. People in the know whi It's a club like no other. Only the most important women receive an invitation. But one daring young reporter is about to infiltrate this female-run secret society, whose beguiling members are caught up in a dark and treacherous business. For years, rumors have swirled about an exclusive, women-only social club where the elite tastemakers of NYC meet. People in the know whisper all sorts of claims: Membership dues cost $1,000 a month. Last time Rihanna was in town, she stopped by and got her aura read. The women even handpicked the city's first female mayor. But no one knows for sure. That is, until journalist Jillian Beckley decides she's going to break into the club. With her career in freefall, Jillian needs a juicy scoop, and she has a personal interest in bringing these women down. But the deeper she gets into this new world--where billionaire "girlbosses" mingle with the astrology-obsessed--the more Jillian learns that bad things happen to those who dare to question the club's motives or giggle at its outlandish rituals. The select group of women who populate the club may be far more powerful than she ever imagined. And far more dangerous too.

30 review for A Special Place for Women

  1. 5 out of 5

    Brenda ~Traveling Sisters Book Reviews

    Genre Blending done right!!! To save her career and impress a man, down on her luck, journalist Jillian decides to follow the rumours and infiltrate a secret club for some tastemaker women of New York. Laura Hankin takes real-life ideas and adds the right amount of satire to create an interesting, outrageous, fun story that addresses powerful women, feminism/white feminism, women supporting, uplifting and empowering women. She adds a bit of fun romance to have us rooting for whose team we are on Genre Blending done right!!! To save her career and impress a man, down on her luck, journalist Jillian decides to follow the rumours and infiltrate a secret club for some tastemaker women of New York. Laura Hankin takes real-life ideas and adds the right amount of satire to create an interesting, outrageous, fun story that addresses powerful women, feminism/white feminism, women supporting, uplifting and empowering women. She adds a bit of fun romance to have us rooting for whose team we are on with Jillian and two characters. There is a surprising twist and a turn to the story (be careful what reviews you read as not to spoil that twist and turn). Unfortunately, I read one and knew what turn the story was going to take. Bummer for me!!! I love the story's premise, and Laura Hankin plays on some tropes, giving them a refreshing and fun take, but mostly stays away from them being oblivious. The story starts off intriguing with the opening scene. It did slow down a bit for me, but when that twist and turn comes, the pace picks up, and I couldn't put the book down. It does feel a bit "far-fetched," but thats in the fun and the irony/satire is what drives the story forward. The ending could be a bit much to buy into, but it plays into the tone of the story. I liked how it all wrapped up, and it felt nice to get lost in the ending. I highly recommend it!! It has a cinematic feel to it, and it is being developed into a TV series. I received a copy from the publisher through NG.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Laura Hankin

    Hi, I wrote this! It’s wild and genre-bending and twisty, with plenty of comedy and romance (yes there IS some fake dating involved!). Think Never Been Kissed meets the insular society of The Secret History, with some Practical Magic vibes to boot. I really hope you enjoy it, and I’m more than happy to answer any questions about it, come to your virtual book clubs, tell you about the time I went to a psychic for research, etc… so please feel free to reach out. Also, the beautiful cover is out TO Hi, I wrote this! It’s wild and genre-bending and twisty, with plenty of comedy and romance (yes there IS some fake dating involved!). Think Never Been Kissed meets the insular society of The Secret History, with some Practical Magic vibes to boot. I really hope you enjoy it, and I’m more than happy to answer any questions about it, come to your virtual book clubs, tell you about the time I went to a psychic for research, etc… so please feel free to reach out. Also, the beautiful cover is out TODAY! Thank you for reading!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    Laura Hankin just officially became one of my favorite authors. This book is tense, spooky, unsettling, sexy, fun, and heartwarming all at once. Hankin is a fantastic writer, not to mention truly FUNNY.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Becca Freeman

    I LOVED this book. Even after, as other reviewers mentioned, things got weird! The book is a fictionalized portrayal of The Wing, an elite women's-only club in NYC. The portrayal of the club and the women in it is so painfully spot on, this book "gets" NYC. I won't spoil anything, but there's a major twist at around 60%. At first I was unsure how I felt, but I ended up really liking the direction the book went in. HIGHLY recommend. I LOVED this book. Even after, as other reviewers mentioned, things got weird! The book is a fictionalized portrayal of The Wing, an elite women's-only club in NYC. The portrayal of the club and the women in it is so painfully spot on, this book "gets" NYC. I won't spoil anything, but there's a major twist at around 60%. At first I was unsure how I felt, but I ended up really liking the direction the book went in. HIGHLY recommend.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Misha (Heartsfullofreads)

    Is this a thriller? No. Is this book filled with an intense feeling of needing to know what in the world is going on? YES! I flew this book in almost a day. Jillian wasn't necessarily the most likeable character in the world. That didn't matter though because I definitely wanted her to succeed. I thoroughly enjoyed this read. Thank you so much to BerkleyPub and Netgalley who provided this EARC in exchange for an honest review. Is this a thriller? No. Is this book filled with an intense feeling of needing to know what in the world is going on? YES! I flew this book in almost a day. Jillian wasn't necessarily the most likeable character in the world. That didn't matter though because I definitely wanted her to succeed. I thoroughly enjoyed this read. Thank you so much to BerkleyPub and Netgalley who provided this EARC in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Woodbury

    2.5 stars. At first I wondered if this would be too similar to 2020's THE HERD, and while they were different enough in the end, they still both suffer from the same problem, if anything this one is an even worse offender. They want to be like "ugh white feminism, amirite?" but only in the most shallow way. Ultimately this book is not all that interested in taking down the idea of a secret, highly influential, all-women's group made up mostly of the ultra-wealthy and white. In the end it is not 2.5 stars. At first I wondered if this would be too similar to 2020's THE HERD, and while they were different enough in the end, they still both suffer from the same problem, if anything this one is an even worse offender. They want to be like "ugh white feminism, amirite?" but only in the most shallow way. Ultimately this book is not all that interested in taking down the idea of a secret, highly influential, all-women's group made up mostly of the ultra-wealthy and white. In the end it is not about the self-serving nature of this type of lean-in style feminism or how it allows well-off women an excuse to avoid doing actual good in favor of their own self-care. It's just about how nice it feels when you do get included. I would actually be just fine with that if the book didn't take great pains to make it clear that it knows how problematic the idea of this club is, if it embraced it it would probably work a lot better to find that human story. Instead, it doesn't seem to have all that much to say in the end. Of course you know even before our protagonist, just-fired journalist Jillian, infiltrates the group that they have definitely Done Bad Things. Otherwise there wouldn't be a story. And it doesn't feel like yet another twisty female thriller that has the exact same kind of tone and characters and setting as every single other twisty female thriller (a lot of it is that, but enough of it isn't to be notable). And I will allow that the twisty elements of it are not the same old things, which is a nice change of pace. And it's not even like I need a thriller to have a point, most of them don't and that's fine. But if you are going to give me so much of Jillian looking around and seeing how bullshit this group is, you have to at some point explain to me what and why and how and it never actually does that because it is really just the table setting for the deeper plot. If the beginning moved faster, if the deeper plot went deeper, I can see how this could have worked. But it never really did either. I will remain here, anxiously awaiting a thriller that actually will be like "destroy white feminism from the inside," I am hopeful that someday we will get it.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Kristina (heartsfullofreads)

    Actual rating: 3.5 stars This is not typically a genre I read so keep that in mind with the rating I gave it. My best friend read this and loved it so I decided to give it a try. The mystery aspect of this book was the best part. I definitely was intrigued and wanted to know what was going on. I also appreciated that this turned out to be a positive story about women. I didn't love the main character at first but she grew on me. She did have some growth by the end which was good. Some aspects of Actual rating: 3.5 stars This is not typically a genre I read so keep that in mind with the rating I gave it. My best friend read this and loved it so I decided to give it a try. The mystery aspect of this book was the best part. I definitely was intrigued and wanted to know what was going on. I also appreciated that this turned out to be a positive story about women. I didn't love the main character at first but she grew on me. She did have some growth by the end which was good. Some aspects of the romance in this book did not work for me. I would say that was probably my least favorite part. Overall, this was an easy and entertaining read. If you regularly read this genre, you will probably enjoy it.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Megan Collins

    Here’s the sign of a great, unputdownable book: I got up early on a Saturday—a SATURDAY—to keep reading. I also went to bed past midnight (super late for Grandma Megan over here) to keep reading. Basically, I couldn’t stop. A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN revolves around a secret society for elite millennial women, and the journalist with nothing left to lose who’s determined to infiltrate their group and expose their rumored shady practices. I loved Laura Hankin’s last book, HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT, so Here’s the sign of a great, unputdownable book: I got up early on a Saturday—a SATURDAY—to keep reading. I also went to bed past midnight (super late for Grandma Megan over here) to keep reading. Basically, I couldn’t stop. A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN revolves around a secret society for elite millennial women, and the journalist with nothing left to lose who’s determined to infiltrate their group and expose their rumored shady practices. I loved Laura Hankin’s last book, HAPPY AND YOU KNOW IT, so much that before I even knew her new book’s premise, it became one of my most anticipated of 2021. And it does not disappoint! The writing is continuously witty, funny, and engaging, the characters are intriguing and, at times, intriguingly suspicious, and the story itself offers so many surprises. Seriously, at one point, you will have to put the book down to be like, “I’m sorry, WHAT?” and then you’ll immediately pick it back up and keep racing through it. I love how the book seemed like it would be about skewering performative feminism (and, in part, it is), but then took a turn into something even more fascinating. I had the most fun reading this book, and I’m certain you will too.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    The first 60% of this book was AMAZING and I couldn’t put it down, but then it took a strange turn and I felt like I was reading a completely different novel. 3.5 stars.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Blake

    I loved this so, so much.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Deborah

    I received a gifted galley of A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN by Laura Hankin for an honest review. Thank you to Berkley Publishing Group and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review! A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN envisions a secret underground club just for women named Nevertheless. They’re rumored to have all the power and influence to ensure their candidate get elected to office and to sway public opinion to bring down their enemies. No one has been able to pin them down, but reporter Jillian ju I received a gifted galley of A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN by Laura Hankin for an honest review. Thank you to Berkley Publishing Group and Netgalley for the opportunity to read and review! A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN envisions a secret underground club just for women named Nevertheless. They’re rumored to have all the power and influence to ensure their candidate get elected to office and to sway public opinion to bring down their enemies. No one has been able to pin them down, but reporter Jillian just might give it a try. While attending her childhood friend’s restaurant opening, she happens to meet a woman most assume is key to the club and she decides that this might just be the answer to her career woes after her employer goes under. Soon Jillian is being escorted blindfolded into the clubhouse, initiated into the secrets of Nevertheless. While she balances the draw of the club with the intrigue of a potential groundbreaking story, Jillian seeks to gain even more access to the inner circle. I enjoyed the author’s HAPPY & YOU KNOW IT last year, so I was eager to pick this one up and I think I enjoyed this one even more. While I didn’t always agree with Jillian’s choices, I could really feel for her predicament. Jillian has recently lost her mother and her job and she’s struggling to make ends meet in the wake of her mother’s medical bills. The draw of Nevertheless and the promise of women helping women also has a very strong draw. This book takes some wild turns a bit past the halfway point and I’m not entirely sure still how I feel about them. It certainly threw a curveball at me that I did not see coming! It made for a very entertaining and gripping read and I really could not click through the pages fast enough! A SPECIAL PLACE FOR WOMEN is out today and I highly encourage adding this one to your TBR list!

  12. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    This book isn’t about influencer women, or a journalist trying to uncover wrong-doing, or even about whether women can support one another. It’s shallow YA witchcraft nonsense that’s been miscategorized. #disappointed

  13. 5 out of 5

    aNeedleinMyBookstack | Christine

    Do you ever read a book or watch a show and desperately want to call/text all your girlfriends and OMG WE NEED TO TALK? That was me after reading to the halfway point of this new book by Laura Hankin. I had no idea where this book was going to go next and happily, for me, every twist and turn did not disappoint, and I thoroughly enjoyed this wild ride. Jillian Beckley is a down on her luck journalist who shows up for a grand opening of a trendy new restaurant to support the owner and best guy fri Do you ever read a book or watch a show and desperately want to call/text all your girlfriends and OMG WE NEED TO TALK? That was me after reading to the halfway point of this new book by Laura Hankin. I had no idea where this book was going to go next and happily, for me, every twist and turn did not disappoint, and I thoroughly enjoyed this wild ride. Jillian Beckley is a down on her luck journalist who shows up for a grand opening of a trendy new restaurant to support the owner and best guy friend, Raf. After a chance meeting with a prominent New Yorker who is purported to lead an elite secret woman’s club, Jillian comes up with a plan to infiltrate and write an exposé on the club. The club is allegedly so powerful they can orchestrate rise and fall of a mayoral candidate and Jillian is determined to find out if any of it’s true. Reviewer mea culpa, I judged this book by its cover. Squinting at a tiny book cover photo on my mobile was a silly error in judgement on my part because after finishing the book, I get it. It is perfect. This book is not a female version of the secretive all-male Bohemian Club but a thought-provoking, discussion-worthy examination of women’s empowerment, both good and bad—and at what cost? If you are looking for something unique and fun and with a little romance threaded through, I highly recommend this book! Thank you @laurahankin @letstalkbookspromo @berkelypublishing and @NetGalley for the eARC of this book. Opinions are my own.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Elle G.

    My Rating: 5 stars Genre Women’s Fiction Review Snapshot : Laura Hankin pens a compulsively readable women’s fiction novel that centers around a secret society of women in NYC! Things get weird in the middle, but I LIVED for the weirdness that went on! So. Good! ︙︙︙︙︙︙︙︙︙ Ever since I read Happy and You Know It by Laura Hankin, I knew she would be an author I go back to over and over again. Her characters, while not the most likeable, are exactly as one would picture them; uptight and snotty el My Rating: 5 stars Genre Women’s Fiction Review Snapshot : Laura Hankin pens a compulsively readable women’s fiction novel that centers around a secret society of women in NYC! Things get weird in the middle, but I LIVED for the weirdness that went on! So. Good! ︙︙︙︙︙︙︙︙︙ Ever since I read Happy and You Know It by Laura Hankin, I knew she would be an author I go back to over and over again. Her characters, while not the most likeable, are exactly as one would picture them; uptight and snotty elite women, women who think they are above everyone else because they are rich etc. Even though you don’t WANT to connect with people like them you can really help it because Laura shows that even though they are distasteful, they too have their own flaws that make them the way they are. It’s really quite amazing how she does this and it’s shown through both books. I think many of the women who I came to dislike in these novels actually redeemed themselves in some way- very cool! Now, I don’t want to spoil this book because it truly IS an intriguing, unique, and EXCELLENT read, but I will say that the reviews are true. Thing DO get weird towards the middle of the book but it’s not something we don’t EXPECT. There are hints thrown throughout the first half of the book so we do know where it might be going, just not what is actually going to happen. I loved this A LOT. That being said, I enjoyed this book immensely and never wanted to put it down. I picked it up whenever I could and sat for hours devouring the pages. If you want a book that’s a bit quirky and totally binge worthy then I highly recommend this one! I can’t wait for her next novel!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alexa Martin

    I know they say don’t judge a book by the cover, but as soon as I saw this cover with its glorious title and captivating description, I knew this book was for me! Laura wrote a hilarious, witty book that takes readers on a freaking JOURNEY! And I loved every single part of it! The characters in this book shine along with a plot I could’ve never predicted. I was up until 3:30 am finishing this book and I have zero regrets!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Mari Chiodo

    This book was not what I expected and yet was so much more. Definitely genre bending. I couldn’t put it down.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Woodruff

    I was so excited to get this ARC. I found this book very enjoyable and it hooked me from the first page. At approximately 62% I was thrown off when the plot took a bit of a twist and turn but overall this book was really good. I loved how relatable Jillian was and found her relationship with her best friend to be very enduring. Check out this book when it hits shelves in 2021!

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    This one was just ok for me. I just wanted MORE. I felt the end was pretty anticlimactic after the "big reveal." This one was just ok for me. I just wanted MORE. I felt the end was pretty anticlimactic after the "big reveal."

  19. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie (read_with_steph)

    What the heck did I just read? This book is described as journalist Jillian infiltrating a secret society for rich, influential, feminist women in New York City. Rumors have been swirling that this cabal got the first female mayor of NYC elected, and then got her booted from office when she attempted to tax their wealth, and Jillian wants to get to the bottom of this. For the first half of this book, I was torn between attempting to appreciate it as a novel, and feeling compelled to analyze it as What the heck did I just read? This book is described as journalist Jillian infiltrating a secret society for rich, influential, feminist women in New York City. Rumors have been swirling that this cabal got the first female mayor of NYC elected, and then got her booted from office when she attempted to tax their wealth, and Jillian wants to get to the bottom of this. For the first half of this book, I was torn between attempting to appreciate it as a novel, and feeling compelled to analyze it as a sociopolitical commentary. And then at 60% in... I don't even know what happens. It just goes off the rails. There's a twist that's so absurd, so random, I don't even know how to wrap my head around it. And there's no way for me to further discuss it here without completely spoiling the book, which I don't want to do. Especially since so many other readers seem to be a fan? Instead, I'll say, if you're a realist or pragmatist, or even just a mystery/romance fan, looking for the story described in the blurb... this might not be the book for you. If you're a fan of the unexpected, the surreal, and fantastical--sure, give this a try. The writing wasn't bad, the characters were interesting, it's just... the plot... left something to be desired. Thank you to Berkley and NetGalley for my eARC! All thoughts and opinions are my own. 3 stars - 6/10

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sydney Cobb

    This book hit all my things that make for a really, really good book. The plot was modern, addictive, unique, and very well developed. I LOVED the narrators personality in her internal monologue— she was so witty, funny, and relatable. This book took a very interesting turn a little more than half way through but it spiced things up and was a fun twist. The ending came pretty abruptly but it was the perfect ending to wrap this story up. This is my second book by Laura Hankin and I will be eagerl This book hit all my things that make for a really, really good book. The plot was modern, addictive, unique, and very well developed. I LOVED the narrators personality in her internal monologue— she was so witty, funny, and relatable. This book took a very interesting turn a little more than half way through but it spiced things up and was a fun twist. The ending came pretty abruptly but it was the perfect ending to wrap this story up. This is my second book by Laura Hankin and I will be eagerly waiting for more!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Erin A. Craig

    Some thing wicked(ly amazing) this way comes!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Meli

    Felt meh about this one

  23. 4 out of 5

    Kelly • Kell of a Read

    Well, this was so delightfully strange and unexpected! I honestly had no idea what this book was about but as soon as I saw it mentioned I immediately placed an order because: 1) I really enjoyed Laura Hankin’s Happy and You Know It and 2) THAT COVER DESIGN! I love going into books totally blind but I’m pretty sure no amount of pre-reading research could have prepared me for this one. While I definitely wouldn’t classify this as a thriller, it was unique, twisted, funny, and downright weird at t Well, this was so delightfully strange and unexpected! I honestly had no idea what this book was about but as soon as I saw it mentioned I immediately placed an order because: 1) I really enjoyed Laura Hankin’s Happy and You Know It and 2) THAT COVER DESIGN! I love going into books totally blind but I’m pretty sure no amount of pre-reading research could have prepared me for this one. While I definitely wouldn’t classify this as a thriller, it was unique, twisted, funny, and downright weird at times. I was initially a little apprehensive about all the “millennial girl boss” vibes but I think it was pretty well done- just enough funny details without shoving too many millennial cliches down our throats. I was a little underwhelmed by the secret society at the beginning and a little weirded out towards the end. The ending felt a bit abrupt, but overall this was fresh and perfectly weird. Even with some flaws, I couldn’t not enjoy it. The book is incredibly well written and I’m very excited to see this plot play out on TV.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    The one thing I love about having a 3 day weekend with Mondays off is that it already feels like the weekend is almost here again haha. The work week just goes so much faster! This weekend I finished A Special Place for Women by Laura Hankin. I really enjoyed Happy and You Know It last year so I couldn’t wait to get my hands on her newest release. In this book we follow Jillian as she’s trying to refind her place in the journalism world after giving everything up to take care of her dying mother. The one thing I love about having a 3 day weekend with Mondays off is that it already feels like the weekend is almost here again haha. The work week just goes so much faster! This weekend I finished A Special Place for Women by Laura Hankin. I really enjoyed Happy and You Know It last year so I couldn’t wait to get my hands on her newest release. In this book we follow Jillian as she’s trying to refind her place in the journalism world after giving everything up to take care of her dying mother. Jillian finds a possible way back in when she might be able to get the inside scoop of a secret all women society. Her plan is to infiltrate this group and then expose them in an article. Well things don’t always go as planned. ❤️Review❤️ If I had to compare Laura Hankin to another author, I would compare her to Liane Moriarty. She writes contemporary stories that become sinister and unexpected. Her writing style is so easy to read and get through quickly. As the reader you just get sucked right into the drama and the world the main character is in. You are just strapped in for the wild ride. This one had a spark of a romantic story line that I wasn’t expecting it to have. It makes me want a sequel just to see how that fully plays out. Laura Hankin is easily becoming one of my favorite authors! I’m usually not one for feminist storylines and I didn’t mind one bit while reading this book. If you are looking for a new release to purchase, I highly recommend you check this one out! 4 stars! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ #Bookstagram #NewReleases #Books #BookReview #PinkBooks #GirlPower #FavoriteAuthor #2021Books #BooksBooksBooks #SpringReading #EasyToRead

  25. 4 out of 5

    Mackenzie Leavenworth

    A Special Place for Women is Laura Hankin’s latest novel in which journalist Jillian Beckley attempts to infiltrate and report on NYC’s most powerful and secret women’s club - Nevertheless. A club that may have made and then destroyed the city’s first female mayor and has eyes, ears and influence in every borough. What will Jillian find as she makes her way past the tarot card readings and career workshops and into the elite inner circle of women? Will it be the exposé that could make her career A Special Place for Women is Laura Hankin’s latest novel in which journalist Jillian Beckley attempts to infiltrate and report on NYC’s most powerful and secret women’s club - Nevertheless. A club that may have made and then destroyed the city’s first female mayor and has eyes, ears and influence in every borough. What will Jillian find as she makes her way past the tarot card readings and career workshops and into the elite inner circle of women? Will it be the exposé that could make her career, or will it leave her exposed in an underground world of magical, tragical loss? I totally sped read this book like it was the most intriguing in-depth New York Times article, which I think is one of Laura Hankin’s greatest accomplishments in this book. She writes such realism and humor into the narrator’s voice, and with an attention to detail and intentionality in building out this secret world of powerful women, that it made such a wild story so believable! If you loved - The Girls by Emma Cline, Laura Hankin’s previous book Happy & You Know It, Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid, The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty, or Writers & Lovers by Lilly King - you’ll love (and will probably laugh out loud at times and stay up until 2 a.m. reading) A Special Place for Women!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Nikki DeVaux

    Uhhh, what the hell. This book was NOT for me, I almost DNF about 82 times because my eyes were hurting from rolling so much. There were so many praises that it was genre blending done right, but I’m having a hard time even figuring out what ones - fantasy? YA? Mystery??? And Jillian, my GOD. She was f’ing insufferable- whiney, talking about how much she needs to have sex every time she even looks at a male (seriously, I do *not* care), her ridiculous inner dialogue & bratty attitude. Also if I Uhhh, what the hell. This book was NOT for me, I almost DNF about 82 times because my eyes were hurting from rolling so much. There were so many praises that it was genre blending done right, but I’m having a hard time even figuring out what ones - fantasy? YA? Mystery??? And Jillian, my GOD. She was f’ing insufferable- whiney, talking about how much she needs to have sex every time she even looks at a male (seriously, I do *not* care), her ridiculous inner dialogue & bratty attitude. Also if I had to hear/read the phrase “her eyes turned red” in reference to someone crying I was about to stick a fork in my eye. I felt the premise was weird as hell - like the author forgot what the club was about so she would randomly mention “feminism” (in quotes because there was really no follow through) to remind the readers that despite all the witchy shit going on (also wtf) these women were trying to do good. And politics was also involved..? Like, I can see the potential but the execution was definitely not there. Honestly I don’t even want to waste anymore energy on this review lol if witches, bad dialogue, an audiobook narrator who is smiling the whole time she’s reading (why was this so frustrating for me???), a terrible attempt at a love triangle and “feminism” is up your alley maybe you’ll enjoy this one. 1.5 stars only because of Libby and her sweet persona.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Alix

    3.5 stars A Special Place for Women sort of felt like two different stories for me. There was a definite tonal switch between the first half and second half. In the first half of the story, the protagonist infiltrates this secret society of powerful and wealthy women. This is presented as a commentary on elitism and how hypocritical these women were. They preach feminism and destroying the patriarchy, yet they are all privileged, wealthy, and white women. They abuse their power for their own selfi 3.5 stars A Special Place for Women sort of felt like two different stories for me. There was a definite tonal switch between the first half and second half. In the first half of the story, the protagonist infiltrates this secret society of powerful and wealthy women. This is presented as a commentary on elitism and how hypocritical these women were. They preach feminism and destroying the patriarchy, yet they are all privileged, wealthy, and white women. They abuse their power for their own selfish goals. They are not inclusive and one has to be deemed worthy to be a member. The second half is when things start to change. You begin to sympathize with these women. The secret society is no longer viewed as an elitist club of privileged women but a sisterhood-although misguided and wayward-wanting to do good. It was conflicting for me to go from disliking these women in the first half to rooting for them in the second half. Overall, I enjoyed this book for its commentary on elite women and their brand of feminism, but I found the twist and the tonal change in the second half to be too jarring. The twist didn’t really work for me and I think the story would have benefited by staying more grounded. Also, I could have done without the romance/love triangle.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Geonn Cannon

    I liked this... didn't quite love it. But it's a rare case where the ending kind of saves the whole thing. I really liked how it ended. There was a romance I felt was obligatory (complete with a potential third option that I feel was supposed to maybe be a triangle? But he just seemed like he was... there). Both of her love interests, actually, just seemed to be potential partners just because they were straight men. "We should be together because why not." But everything with the group was real I liked this... didn't quite love it. But it's a rare case where the ending kind of saves the whole thing. I really liked how it ended. There was a romance I felt was obligatory (complete with a potential third option that I feel was supposed to maybe be a triangle? But he just seemed like he was... there). Both of her love interests, actually, just seemed to be potential partners just because they were straight men. "We should be together because why not." But everything with the group was really good. I wish we'd gotten more of the women there, and the history.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kaila McCracken

    “I understood that to be a woman in the world was to spend so much time trying to act the right way. Be loud enough, but not too loud. Stand up for yourself, but pleasantly... Always, always I was trying to get it right, to find the balance, but here around this circle, naked but not sexualized, together we could flail and scream and open ourselves raw without worrying about anything else at all.” If I could give half stars (damn you, GoodReads!) I would probably give this 3.5 stars rather than 3 “I understood that to be a woman in the world was to spend so much time trying to act the right way. Be loud enough, but not too loud. Stand up for yourself, but pleasantly... Always, always I was trying to get it right, to find the balance, but here around this circle, naked but not sexualized, together we could flail and scream and open ourselves raw without worrying about anything else at all.” If I could give half stars (damn you, GoodReads!) I would probably give this 3.5 stars rather than 3. The mystery component of the story was interesting and fun, and there were some insightful observations around elitism, gatekeeping, and the grating phoniness of the “girl boss” brand of feminism. That said, I didn’t really connect with Jillian (the protagonist), and her predictable storylines with Miles and Raf felt like they detracted from the genuinely fun and unique parts of the story.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Claudia

    3.5-4 stars ✨

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