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Daughters of Eve

3.61  ·  Rating details ·  3,623 ratings  ·  271 reviews
Sworn to secrecy. Bound by loyalty.
It's the high school's most exclusive club--but now a twisted mind is leading it. Who will be the first victim?

The girls at Modesta High School feel like they're stuck in some anti-feminist time warp-they're faced with sexism at every turn, and they've had enough. Sponsored by their new art teacher, Ms. Stark, they band together to form t
Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 1st 1990 by Laurel Leaf (first published 1979)
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Maddie Yes and no. It is for the more mature reader, as it deals with teenage boys taking advantage of teenage girls, sexism, chauvinism, and strong language…moreYes and no. It is for the more mature reader, as it deals with teenage boys taking advantage of teenage girls, sexism, chauvinism, and strong language. If the reader is more advanced and definitely knows about this sort of stuff, it is okay for a middle schooler. (less)

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Average rating 3.61  · 
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 ·  3,623 ratings  ·  271 reviews

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Oct 27, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people who prefer shades of gray to black-and-white.
I have to say, I'm pretty shocked by some of the reactions to this book that have been posted here. As a staunch feminist, I have no problem at all with Daughters of Eve. In fact, I'd bet money that Duncan is a self-proclaimed feminist.

I think people are misreading this book as an anti-feminist crusade, when in reality it's a commentary on radicalism gone out of control. Most of the young women portrayed in this book are victims of chauvinism in varying degrees -- Fran is struggling to be taken
Joe Valdez
My Lois Duncan jag continues with Daughters of Eve and it's the best from the author I've read so far, a big, unwieldy but enthralling thriller with so much going on between the notes that it even develops a minor key in the paranormal. This one was first published in 1979 and revised by the author in 2011, not so much due to changes in technology or fashion, but in politics, with a high school in a fictional Michigan town curiously frozen in an era before feminism. Dry as a tinder box, this con ...more
“The silence was gone now, and the night was filled with voices—a chirp, a growl, a twitter—a burst of high-pitched laughter.”
― Lois Duncan, Daughters of Eve

I always loved this book, Daughters of Eve by Lois Duncan. Can be read by any age group. And should be.

This book has been labeled the female "Lord of the flies". It was also , back in the day, banned in many places. I really think the reaction to the book was sort of extreme. I feel this is sort of a love it or hate it and I happen to love
Sep 17, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Rush Limbaugh, as though he needs it
Shelves: ya-literature
A straight-up anti-feminist screed, and an embarrassment that Lois Duncan should be ashamed of herself for having written. The whole thing was so dreadful and offensive that I stole it from the Englewood Public Library in New Jersey so that no young minds would be tainted by it. (Yes, I know it was wrong. The only excuse I have is that I was in my early 20s at the time.)

The plot, as I remember it, is that a woman teacher, who’s your run-of-the-mill man-hating, ugly, radical feminist lesbian, tak
Charlotte Stein
Jun 21, 2016 rated it did not like it
A complete load of old nonsense. That anyone could think this is a feminist novel beggars belief. Nearly every man in it is awful, but the girls and their teacher are villainised for saying so. In fact, the teacher is flagged as a villain from the get go, leaving the reader in little doubt as to the message being drilled home here.

If Irene Stark is the villain, driven "mad" by bitterness and resentment at her position in life, then of course everything she says and recommends must be viewed wit
May 01, 2009 rated it really liked it
One summer when I was a teenager I read almost every book every written by Lois Duncan. I was really into suspense stories at the time, and I remember just devouring every one of her books I could get my hands on. Out of all the titles I checked out of the library that summer, Daughters of Eve and Stranger With My Face were the two that left a lasting impression on me,so much so that I bought my own copies. They still stay with me almost 10 years later.

Daughters of Eve is a great read- but very
If you don't mind being disgusted, read this book; it's very good.

The men in Daughters of Eve are horrific, and some of the women are giving them a run for their money. I think there is one decent male character in the entire book.

The story takes place in 1979, but you would think it was 1949. One girl's father still believes that only females should wash dishes, tend to younger siblings, and clean up any mess that a male makes around the house. Ruth is not allowed to do anything outside of scho
This and A Gift of Magic are my two ultimate favorite Lois Duncan books. Not only is her writing style amazing, but these topics felt real to me when I read them the first time, and I still enjoy them now.

In Daughters of Eve, we have a bit of a popular-girls high school setting, but not in the way you would expect. Irene, a teacher, picks those girls who need friendship most and brings them together to create something good, something feminine and powerful. The only drawback is that Irene has a
Oh my god! This book! There are instances when I can't read another word because the situation about on how women are treated are just too much. The men are very offensive and they act like they own the world. Toward the middle when the girls are realizing their worth, I was given some sort of ease. But the story turned again. Ms. Irene Stark their club sponsor is a man-hater-psycho-bitch! And I got the impression that she's trying to turn the girls into man haters too, which is like pretty much ...more
Jul 31, 2012 rated it really liked it
I don't think this book is about feminism but about extremism. I think it brings up a lot of great points for its time.
Great book. Loved this one, too. Would love to own the versions of Duncan's book I had as a teen. I think they fell apart from reading so often.

June 2016: Updating to say I'm sorry to hear of Duncan's death. Daughters of Eve made a huge impression on me. I think it's often misinterpreted as anti-feminist. But I disagree. Observing these girls as they discover self value was enlightening.
Taylor (taymwoods)
Lois Duncan man - what a woman way ahead of the times. This book hits all points of discussion within feminism: misogyny, sexism, chauvinism, abortion/the right to choose, ALL the points. This definitely will point young adults into the discussion of feminism, women's rights, conservatism, and (I hope) the idea of going a little too far in being a super radical whatever.
Aug 12, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: general-fiction
I listened to the audio version and quite enjoyed this. It's the story of the Daughter's of Eve, which is an exclusive girls club in backwater Modesta. Duncan dishes out an interesting cast of characters. There's the overweight, insecure girl, the pretty, popular girl, a science enthusiast, an artist in love with a local farmer, a girl living in a home full of domestic abuse, a musician, and the teacher's daughter with a touch of ESP. The teacher-mentor of the club is a real piece of work. She g ...more
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
'How about some coffee?' her husband said now. His eyes were back on the newspaper.
'It's on, and the cups are in the drying rack.'
'I didn't ask you where it was. I said, how about some?'
'I know. I'm sorry.' Edna Grange got to her feet and went into the kitchen and poured his coffee.


This book was originally published in 1979. And now, here I sit reading in the year of our Lord two thousand and seventeen. And it is still painfully relevant. Body shaming, gender roles, bodily autonomy are still i
Jan 11, 2010 rated it did not like it
This could have been a really good book, but the characters were all such stereotypes, it was hard to feel anything for any of them. There was this weird undertone that I couldn't figure out as well. Was the author trying to be pro-strong independent female? If so, she was so heavy handed that it made you almost root against the girls and their journey to independence. It was like she was saying in order to be a strong, independent woman, you have to hate men. That's so far from the truth, in my ...more
Jul 15, 2009 rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult
Probably the worst book I've ever read in my life, and I've read some TERRIBLE books in my lifetime. This book vilifies feminism (I don't know if this was Lois Duncan's intention, seeing as she's a woman and thereby generalizing that she's cool with her sex) and makes most of her female characters such little wimps. The women with true, for lack of a better word, balls are met with such contempt and then punished at the end.

Maybe I'm reading too much into it, but god damn it, my spider-sense wa
Oct 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
By about page 75, I was like "Yes, I get it, there is gender inequality. Enough already...what is the plot? Where are we going?" My main problem with this book is that there are just too many characters. I found myself having a hard time keeping some of the girls straight because the author has about ten girls but she takes a long time to come back to each of them. Then there's a bizarre anti-climactic climax with a page and a half denouement at the end. Meh. It's just meh.
Jun 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I just re-read this. It was one of my favorite teen shows just how easily people can be twisted by left-wing radicalism and how one-sided and scary those view points can be.
Roz Curney-Sherod
Mar 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hard to catch my breath after things started speeding up and forgot some of whom the main characters were. From the beginning, "Daughters of Eve" is a thriller/YA/paranormal book geared towards adults. I didn't think I'd like this at first but the book, even though it was written in 1979 then edited in 1990 was very well written. The situations in the plot still unfortunately ring true today and makes you more angry that almost nothing has changed. The story takes place in fictional "Modesta, Mi ...more
Nicole Palumbo Davies
Sep 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
This book has not aged well. Daughters of Eve is about an exclusive club of high school girls who find power in their sisterhood, and then use that power for revenge. Each of the 10 girls in the group is dealing with some form of sexism, but it is their teacher, a bitter, wronged woman, who leads them down a dark path.
There is no subtlety to Daughters of Eve. The reader is knocked over the head with the unfairness of being female (at least being female in the 1970's), and many of the male charac
I’m angry! The story wasn’t really wrapped up, and justice wasn’t restored. Also, the “modernized” text meant clunkily substituting CDs and iPods for records, and cellphones and email for landlines and letters. Very annoying. I’m going to read the original edition if I can find it.
The story was gripping indeed, but it should have been longer to better finish all the stories. And as I said, right and justice did not prevail, which felt both unsatisfying and unrealistic.
This trend of updating dec
May 20, 2007 rated it liked it
Shelves: childrens-books
This 1980 book would have really thrilled me in my lesbian separatist days. It is about a feminist club in high school that takes revenge on men when they feel they've been treated unfairly. The author's attitude is unclear. The moral judgements are mostly left up to the reader. First the club members shave the head of a boy who has used one of them for sex and then dumped her. Then they trash the science lab when a boy's project gets picked for the science fair over a better one by a girl. They ...more
The Daughters of Eve are the high school's most exclusive club, led by art teacher Irene Stark, and new members Ruth, Jane, and Laura are thrilled to be asked to join. Slowly, the club is led by Irene to question the gender assumptions which hem them in on all sides, and they eventually take some shocking actions in order to redress the balance.

The characterizations are sharply observed, and the character interactions are equally perceptive and often simply painful to read, as the girls (and th
ambrose austin
my girlfriend and i talked about this a bit and we couldn't decide if this was pro or anti-feminist. at first it seems decidedly feminist. but then the main feminist turns creepsville and then there's some violence because of the feminism. as for the book itself - eh.
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
One of my favorite Lois Duncan books and the subject matter is, sadly, as relevant now as it was in the 70's.
Cooper Philpot
Jan 13, 2019 rated it liked it

I just finished a book called “Daughters Of Eve”. this book is about a group of girlfriends who join a secret club in highschool but have been persuaded by the new club teacher named irene stark that they are being abused and belittled by their dad and the men close to them. Irene demands that the girls need to do something about it, so they take action and start to plan there revenge.

This novel is definitely a mix between multiple different genres, on one page it could be a thriller and on t
Jul 21, 2019 rated it liked it
I didn't read this as a teen when I was really into Lois Duncan's books. It holds up as a great read -- my 13 year-old daughter couldn't put it down -- but it pales in comparison to Summer of Fear and Down a Dark Hall.
Nov 01, 2020 rated it did not like it
this book was a train wreck from start to finish and was completely pushing the idea of "feminism gone too far"
I wanted to throw it off the third floor balcony of this apartment complex multiple times
Sara Maria
Jun 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Daughters of Eve is probably my second favorite of all of Lois Duncan's suspense novels right behind Down a Dark Hall. A great tale of sisterhood with a suspenseful twist. It had a great cast of characters who came from different social standings and backgrounds who came together to stand up for each other against the abuse they were suffering. A wonderful read.
heather - NightlyReading
Nov 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I can honestly say that I think this has been my favorite audiobook that I have listened to so far. The narrator's voice was awesome. I was able to distinguish between all of the characters that were speaking. She really was able to get her voice to sound just like the guys. I was in awe and mesmerized. I wanted to do nothing but listen to this book from beginning to end.

The book starts off introducing each character and it does not take the listener long to realize all of their different situat
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Lois Duncan (born Lois Duncan Steinmetz) was an American writer and novelist, known primarily for her books for children and young adults, in particular (and some times controversially considering her young readership) crime thrillers. Duncan's parents were the noted magazine photographers Lois Steinmetz and Joseph Janney Steinmetz. She was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but grew up in Saraso ...more

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“The silence was gone now, and the night was filled with voices—a chirp, a growl, a twitter—a burst of high-pitched laughter.” 4 likes
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