cover image Last Woman Standing

Last Woman Standing

Amy Gentry. Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $25 (320p) ISBN 978-0-544-96253-8

The life of struggling comedian Dana Diaz, the narrator of this provocative tale of psychological suspense from Gentry (Good as Gone), changes when she meets Amanda Dorn in an Austin, Tex., comedy club. Dana isn’t good at being friends with women, but Amanda is different, and soon Dana opens up about the harassment and assault she’s faced as a comedian. Amanda is no stranger to harassment. A former computer programmer in a male-dominated tech company, she’s had issues of her own. Tired of the humiliation and intimidation, they form a pact to systematically teach each of their aggressors a lesson, hoping their efforts will save other women. The plan seems to be working, until Dana nearly kills someone. Confused and unsure whom she can trust—including herself—Dana flees to L.A., back to her life before Austin. But Amanda isn’t done yet. She has another name on her list, and she’s determined that Dana will fulfill her part of the bargain—at all costs. Gentry ably explores issues of gender, violence, and rage, though the too pat ending comes as a letdown. Agent: Sharon Pelletier, Dystel, Goderich & Bourret. (Jan.)