As unnerving as the buzz of a neon light, Ivy Pochoda’s fourth novel, These Women, pulses with a heart-in-your-throat mystery ... On its surface, the setup is familiar, but Pochoda’s ingeniously structured white-knuckler is concerned with upending assumptions; these pages dare us to interrogate what we believe, especially when it comes to who does or doesn’t deserve our sympathy ... Discovering the hopes and hang-ups of each brash, brazen woman is as thrilling as learning how they’re connected and whether they will survive.
... not only has Pochoda written an immersive, intriguing murder mystery—she's also crafted a framework with which we can examine how all women are viewed in Western cultures, sometimes as madonnas, more often as whores ... almost more chilling than the killer's actions and motivations is the strange family situation in which he operates, one that is so opposite to the lives of his victims that readers will wonder how they can coexist in the same locale, and one that also shows our society's views of women, taken to any extreme, make things bad for us all.
...Ivy Pochoda, in her flawless new novel These Women, has her own angle on the L.A. street, one not only low to the ground, as you might expect, and razor-sharp, but also trained on the women working the most dangerous beat of all ... These Women is at first glance a conventional murder mystery constructed on that sturdy old tripod of serial killer, murdered women and dogged female detective. But each of those elements is freshly minted here thanks to the psychological depth granted each character and the graceful twists of Ms. Pochoda’s cunning yet unfussy plot ... Essie Perry [is] surely one of crime fiction’s most memorable and convincing investigators ... every detail—of the criminal investigation and, equally riveting, of these characters’ lives—draws us deeper into the pulsing, restless city.