Monday, September 12, 2011

Review - Commune of Women by Suzan Still - Pump Up Your Book Tour - September 12, 2011

About the Book:

What happens when ordinary citizens, going about their daily plans, suddenly encounter their worst nightmare? That is a question the women of Commune of Women are about to answer.

On an ordinary Los Angeles morning, seven women converge upon LAX for various purposes. Suddenly, in the midst of the crowded terminal, disaster strikes. Each woman spies her only chance at survival and races into the tiny staff room that is to be her home for the next four days. By the first night, they have rudimentary knowledge of one another: Sophia is a powerful, 60-ish woman who is unaccountably adept at the arts of survival; Pearl, an ancient bag lady, part-Black, part-Choctaw, is resourceful and unafraid; Erika , a top executive, has had her business trip cut short by a bullet in the shoulder; Heddi, a Jungian analyst already stressed by marital problems, knows she must use her psychological skills to help the others; Betty, an overweight, histrionic, 50-ish housewife, can’t stand the sight of blood or the thought of how she’s driven her entire family away; and Ondine, a sylph-like, 40ish artist, wealthy, unhappy and neurotic, has inherited a home in France. For four days, united by their common will to survive, the women learn to cooperate and to both entertain and sustain themselves by telling their life stories, which grow darker and more intimate as the days pass.

Meanwhile, Najat, the sole female among her group, the Brothers, has been abandoned by her male companions in a control room with a bank of monitors giving a view of the entire terminal and of televised rescue efforts, where she struggles between her own conscience and the dictates of her group.

My Review:

One seemingly normal day at the airport turns into a not so normal event.  Chaos and gunfire at the airport causes six women to run for cover to the breakroom of the LAX airport.  Two of the women are wounded.   The women all come together and end up telling stories of their lives in the midst of all of the things going on.

I liked that Suzan Still defined each character by putting their name as a header while they tell their story.  You will go from one character to the next as you listen to their stories.  The writing is very detailed.   I loved the whole idea of the story.  You just never know, one day you could be doing something ordinary like going to the airport and you could be put with a bunch of women that you don't even know and end up telling more to them about your life than you would even expect.

At first I had trouble getting into the book and trying to remember who was who.  What have been really cool would be to have a picture of each woman maybe at the beginning of the book just so you could connected a face with the character.  I know when you read you are supposed to form each character in your mind, but it just would have been helpful.  I could really see this book being made into a movie!

My Rating :  
Commune of Women
Author:  Suzan Still
Published July 16th 2011 by Fiction Std
ISBN: 1936558165 (ISBN13: 9781936558162)
Number of pages: 350

About Suzan Still:

Suzan Still holds a masters in art and writing and a doctorate in depth psychology. A retired university professor, she also taught creative writing in a men’s prison, where she became increasingly concerned with issues of social disenfranchisement. She lives in the foothills of California’s Sierra Nevada Mountains with her husband and an assortment of rescued fur children.

You can visit Suzan at

Disclaimer:Thank you to Tracee at  Pump Up Your Book Tours for sending me a review copy. I was not compensated for my review. My thoughts on this book were in no way influenced by the author or publicist.They are my personal reflections based solely on MYexperience while reading this novel.
© 2011, Cheryl of Black Diamond’s Book Reviews. All Rights Reserved. If you reading this on a site other than Black Diamond's Book ReviewsUrban Image Magazine, or Cheryl’s feed, be aware that this post has been stolen and is used without permission.


  1. This one sounds really good. I'm going to keep an eye out for this one. Great honest review!

  2. I so don't ever want that to happen to me!!!!