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Fast Women

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  12,266 Ratings  ·  569 Reviews
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Crusie returns with her most hilarious, sizzling novel yet

Nell Dysart’s in trouble. Her divorce is 18 months old, she’s been sleepwalking through life, and the best job she can get is with a detective agency that specializes in relationship work. Determined to turn her life around, Nell flings herself into making McK
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Published October 13th 2010 by Brilliance Audio (first published May 1st 2001)
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yeah, i'm surprised, myself. but it's a different kind of four-star rating. because while there were elements i thought were unsuccessful and dippy characters whose actions confused me, you don't sit down and eat a tub of frosting with a wooden spoon and then complain about the aftertaste.

i just don't usually have this much fun with the titles for the bodice rippers society. they are fine, but usually they are trying too hard to be sexxy, which is a total turn-off.

this one was goofier, and i th
mark monday
Mar 11, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to mark by: RBRS (Assignment #6)
Shelves: romantika
my first contemporary (and heterosexual) romance. or in this case, a "romantic mystery". cute, fun, and even ocasionally interesting. the situations and attitudes depicted in this novel are so outside of my experience that at times i felt like i was reading a scifi novel. which was not a bad feeling.

do you live in a bubble?
interesting question. my first instinct is to say No, of course i don't. that's probably everyone's first instinct; who wants to live in a bubble, who wants to admit that?
Jun 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
“This does not sound like lust.”
“Thank God.”
“This sounds like luv.”

Fast Women is an entertaining contemporary mystery romance. It is about a group of people, who in some sense are all connected to each other. These connections are so complicated that I had to write a list of the characters for myself. :)

The main characters are Nell and Gabe. Gabe is devilish and tempting, Nell is “gracefully efficient” and go-ahead. Nell enters Gabe’s life, and she rearranges not only his office, but his w
ALERT, ALERT, ALERT! I think I found one! A real romance novel that feels like a romance novel! It negated most of the problems I have with romance novels: that the people I'm supposed to like are assholes, that it all happens too fast and unrealistically, that the main characters spend all their time thinking about each others crazy crazy amazing bodies. And and and! Women's sexuality isn't fetishized as pure as the driven snow. Possessiveness happens, sure, but you know, when it's realistic. N ...more
Jun 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery

OK, they're not really fast exactly, but c'mon, they only have fragile little stumpy china legs.

The Walking Ware may be only a metaphor (a pretty obvious one), but these women are Special Olympics fast, not Florence Griffith Joyner fast. They are like people who come out of comas and must slowly learn to walk again. Only, most of them seem to have never known how in the first place.

Suze seemed in some ways to have the most excuse for her retardation: she married an older man whom she met while

3 Stars! Too much going on and it was hard to keep track of, at least for me.

Usually this author's writing works for me, but unfortunately this won't go on my favorite read shelf. That's not to say it wasn't amusing and somewhat entertaining, but in the end, there were too many side stories that got in the way of the original plot, and I didn't enjoy it the way I wanted too.

On the plus side, the narrator Sandra Burr was a pleasure to listen to.

Evelyn Bryant
Nov 05, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not my first Cruisie book , but I believe it will be my last. I have heard good things about this author and have tried to read her. First off, I liked the fact the characters were not 20 somethings, formula, etc. I liked that Nell was attempting to move on past the bumps in the road that life had dealt her. I have no clue what purpose her best friends served. They were all three annoying ,tiresome women. Who would get a job they apparently need and set out to antagonize the boss? I can see clea ...more
Katrina Passick Lumsden
I had reservations when my mom told me this book was funny because she likes a lot of books that I end up finding corny. Or worse, funny because they're trying too hard. But in this case, my mom was right. This book is hilarious. I don't often laugh-out-loud while reading, but I did more than a few times while reading this. The female protagonist, Nell, can be a little hard to connect with at times, and this is written for a generation of women ahead of my own, but even with that, I found I was ...more
Apr 27, 2012 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
*****MINOR SPOILERS!!!********

1. Was anyone else REALLY disturbed about a 40 year old men having sex with an 18 year old high school student in a motel? And people looking at that photo and talking about how "in prime" Jack looked and NOT how it was a few months away from being statutory rape?

2. OMG that whole convo about Gale understanding why men HIT THEIR WOMEN? Are you F-ing kidding me? Um, men don't hit women because "they love them so much they can't have them leave, but they can't stay wi
I really enjoyed this book. I liked the central characters a lot, and it made me happy. There is humor in this book and an approach to love, romance, and marriage that is grown-up and realistic while still maintaining a sense of fun and optimism. This isn't the kind of romance novel where the leads spend the whole book trying to avoid having sex and then when they do it's just happily-ever-after. They have to work at their relationship. They have to negotiate with each other to get what they nee ...more
Anne  (Booklady) Molinarolo
3.5 Stars

This novel is quirky and hilarious! The writing style is good overall, but I did
get confused at times by some of the dialogue - loss of 1/2 star. Gotta love those Dysart women!

Nell Dysart is sleepwalking through her life as a divorced woman. She didn't see it coming. And now she needs a job. She sits in Gabe McKenna's office at his detective agency and thinks of ways to fix it, all the while she is breaking a window, his chair arm, and poking a hole in his Oriental rug. McKenna hires Ne
I quite liked this one, as it was frothy and fun but still somehow realistic—Crusie is good at setting up relationships between both the main and the secondary romantic couples which don't rely on external forces to create angst and drama, but rather at showing how repeated patterns of behaviour can ruin relationships without any outside help. I also liked the fact that Crusie is always happy to show her female characters taking genuine pleasure in their food, but not in a neurotic way, and that ...more
Jim son of Jim (formerly PhotoJim)
I'm not sure if I liked this or not.

What I did like: Some people have sex for stupid reasons. Some people have sex with people you don't think they should. Strong women. Columbus Ohio (where I live). Some amusing banter.

What I didn't like: All men are not bastards. More than I ever wanted to hear about china patterns. What's with freezers? Weak women. Somewhat incoherent plot. A couple of totally unreal characters (Chloe anyone?).

So some good, some bad. Overall a light and fun read by an author
Olga Godim
Jan 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: jennifer-crusie
I love this writer. I’ve read everything she published and I subscribe to her blog. This re-read (it was originally published in 2001) gave me enormous pleasure and induced several laughing fits.
The story starts with the protagonist, Nell, coming to a job interview. She is a divorcee, still reeling from her husband’s betrayal after their 22 years of marriage. Her interviewer and potential employer, Gabe, owns a PI agency and he needs an office manager.
He picked up her resume. “Why did you leav
Oct 10, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Horrible. I stopped reading half way through.

I don't know, I'm guessing I"m not the target demographic for this type of book because I found it extremely hard to relate to any of the characters. Being in my twenties, my humanist side roared with indignation at how appalling all these women acted and behaved, not to mention, the stereotypical ways all the men were portrayed. They were all manipulative, dysfunctional, and stupid people trying to do the "right" thing but actually doing the WRONG th
Jacob Proffitt
Gabe and Nell are awesome and the story was a lot of fun as well. I was a bit put off by the sex outside the main couple (both sleep with someone other than the main romance storyline during the course of the book, though both instances pull back pretty quick and happen early). I didn't realize that that would be a thing until I read it, but it turns out I'm not a fan—and yeah, I'm still trying to parse out why that bothers me and what aspects of it make a difference.

A note about Steamy: despite
Mar 03, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women seeking bodice ripper wish fulfillment thinly disguised as chick lit mystery
Meh. I was really hoping for more.

I was hoping this would be like a good Susan Isaacs book, something along the lines of Long Time No See or After all these years. Meaning yes, a light read with some romance and a happy ending, but also a mystery and unconventional main characters I'd actually meet, or would want to meet, in real life. I think Jennifer Crusie was trying for that effect and while I acknowledge some limited success, overall this book didn't make it for me.

We meet Nell, a beaten-do
Feb 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm giving this book four stars, not so much because I loved it, but because it had a strong emotional impact on me. Fast Women was not an easy book to read. It contained some heartrendingly-accurate descriptions of the pain, the anger, the self-doubt, and the exhausting circular thinking that attends the end of a marriage. Even though I was exasperated with almost every character in this novel at one point or another, I could identify with almost all of them because they were struggling with th ...more
The first half of this shapes up really well - The Maltese Falcon on speed.  Crusie does unresolved sexual tension very well, with a good line in resolving it too.  There's a complicated murder investigation going on in the background, which I think I followed.  Points deducted for the fact that too much time is spent on secondary characters at the expense of the MCs' story, and for some strange conflicts introduced into the MC story at the end.  Less is more, sometimes.  But - it's Crusie and s
Fast Women

The Characters


And a bunch of other folks.

The Story

This story was really interesting and really complicated. A who-done-it story laced with friendship, comedy and love.

The Random Thoughts

This story once again proves that I can not go wrong with a Jennifer Crusie book. But, now I’ve read all of the back catalogue and she needs to write me some new stuff.

4 Stars
Sep 04, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, romance, ebook
Well, this is my least favorite Crusie book, I think.

I didn't particularly like Gabe - I found him to be sexist, condescending, controlling, and kind of an all-around douchebag. No better, honestly, than Tim the shitbag ex. They both wanted Nell to be smaller than she was, someone who would prop them up, but stay in the background like a perfect, meek little servant. Neither of them respected the tremendous amount of work she did to support them. Both took her utterly for granted.

Nell had her p
Jan 09, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my unofficial goals this year is to take part in more of the group reads in one of my online book groups, On the Porch Swing. The group often has interesting and lively discussions, and I wanted to be a part of that this year. To begin the year, January's pick was Fast Women by Jennifer Crusie. I have never read anything by this author before, although I have heard of her. She's a favorite in many circles.

I did not really know what to expect when I began reading Fast Women. When I hear Je
Mary Kinietz
Lots of twists and turns.
LG (A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions)
After Nell Dysart divorced her husband of 22 years, she lost her appetite for everything. Because her friends, Suze and Margie, are worried about her, she gets a job as a secretary at Gabe McKenna's detective agency. Of course, Gabe's biggest clients are also all the men who are or once were in Nell and her friends lives, so it's not like she's getting too fresh a start. Gabe's agency starts looking into a blackmail case involving those men, and things start getting very complicated.

This makes i
Jul 22, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Funny and witty, but a lot of characters to track...

One of the (regular-speed) women in our book club selected an author new to us, Jennifer Crusie. We picked up "Fast Women" out of amusement with the title, although we're not really sure the book is aptly named. Early on, we almost confused leading lady Nell Dysart with Evanovich's Stephanie Plum - on a job interview, Nell breaks just about everything she touches in the prospective boss's office. But detective Gabe McKenna hires her anyway, an
I liked it well enough, though at times I felt it was more a book about bad relationships than a romance, and I never really got a feel for who Gabe was.

I did like Nell as a character, and her growth was very nice to see. I also liked that this was a book featuring characters in their forties, who both had been married before.

The other side characters I disliked most of the time, because nobody seemed to take control over their life. But since it was one of the main topics of the book I guess it
Dec 15, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed
I stopped in at the County library today, looking for a fix. I wanted something light and funny. I walked out with three Jennifer Crusie novels that I'd never read, and I finished this one within a few hours. It was exactly what I wanted.

As the cover copy explains, Nell and Gabe are both divorced. Nell's been in a bad place since her divorce; she's depressed, and she doesn't even have the desire to eat. Her friend, Suze, tells her that Gabe needs a secretary, and since Nell finally reaches the s
Kathryn Bain
Jul 29, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a humorous romantic mystery. This is not a laugh-out-loud book, but you do find yourself giggling in quit a few places. Be warned, there is sex, but not too graphic, and the "f" word is used every once in a while. This is not a Christian book, it is secular, so the hero/heroine drink and have sex outside of marriage. That, however, is the world we live in.

I had most of the mystery figured out well before the end, but with all the antics of the heroine and her friends, I found myse
Jun 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you want to be happy and entertained you can't go wrong with a Jennifer Crusie novel. This one was filled with offbeat characters, snappy dialog, some sexy scenes here and there, and peppered throughout with a little wisdom and a lot of humor. Fast Women is set to the backdrop of a detective agency and has a decidedly 1940's vibe in a very modern story. There's lots of good chemistry between the characters, and an underlying question or theme regarding the pros and cons of marriage. Some of i ...more
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #61 - Fast Women 1 4 Oct 21, 2014 12:45PM  
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  • Lady Be Good (Wynette, Texas #2)
  • Heiress for Hire (Cuttersville, #2)
  • Sex, Lies, and Online Dating (Writer Friends, #1)
  • Public Displays of Affection
  • Time Off for Good Behavior
  • Hot & Bothered (Marine, #3)
  • The Playboy (Chandler Brothers, #2)
Jenny Crusie is the NYT bestselling author of twenty some novels and lots of other stuff. Her latest novel, Maybe This Time, hit shelves in August, 2010.

Jenny lives on the Ohio River where she often stares at the ceiling and counts her blessings.
More about Jennifer Crusie...

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“Drink to me! I just realized that I've slept with everyone at this table! ~Nell” 19 likes
“I like my afterglow with you in motion. I measure time by how your body sways.” 18 likes
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