Greer Kadetsky is a shy college freshman when she meets the woman she hopes will change her life. Faith Frank, dazzlingly persuasive and elegant at sixty-three, has been a central pillar of the women’s movement for decades, a figure who inspires others to influence the world. Upon hearing Faith speak for the first time, Greer–madly in love with her boyfriend, Cory, but still full of longing for an ambition that she can’t quite place–feels her inner world light up. Then, astonishingly, Faith invites Greer to make something out of that sense of purpose, leading Greer down the most exciting path of her life as it winds toward and away from her meant-to-be love story with Cory and the future she’d always imagined.
The Female Persuasion focuses mostly on a woman named Greer who we are introduced to while she is going to college at Ryland, a college in Connecticut. We follow her through her life until she is middle-aged, while also skipping around to other characters like her college boyfriend Cory, and her mentor Faith Frank, among others. I liked that we got a bunch of different viewpoints in this book, including secondary characters. Even though there are a lot of characters, Wolitzer somehow managed to keep the book from getting convoluted and confusing.
The Female Persuasion is about a girl and her mentor, but also many other things. It looks at relationships between parents and children, romantic partners, and friends. There is a hefty dose of feminism and the tone of the overall book would be considered feminist in my opinion.
I loved reading about the characters in this book and I felt as though this book is more about the characterization than the actual plot. If you asked me to tell you what the plot was I frankly wouldn’t be able to tell you because I was so focused on the characters and their stories. Is this the plot? I don’t know, all I know is I loved this book.
Final Thought: I actually can’t really think of anything I didn’t like about this book. There was tragedy, love, hardship, feminism, political topics, friendship, betrayal, and so much more. It was more of a coming of age tale to me, so I guess that might be my only complaint. The blurb makes it sound more like it is just about the mentor/mentee relationship, but there was a lot more to it then that. I can’t wait to read more from this author because I adore her writing style, and I think she is a masterful storyteller!
The Female Persuasion in 3-ish words: Memorable, Witty, Observant
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 / 5