THE EXTRA WOMAN named one of the best books of 2018 in the “House & Home” category by the Financial Times.

Read excerpts from THE EXTRA WOMAN at The Paris Review and Literary Hub.

New interview with Joe Melia of Bristol 24/7

Read interviews with Kelly Faircloth at Jezebel and with Alanna Schubach at Brick Underground

Listen to interviews with Kris Boyd of Think (KERA FM); with Mark Rotella and Rose Fox of Publishers Weekly Radio; and with Courtney Balestier of WMFA Podcast.

Read the highlights of my interview with Sarah Mikutel of Postcard Academy here, and listen to the whole interview here.

“In 1936, a Vogue editor named Marjorie Hillis published Live Alone and Like It, a jubilant guide for the single working woman, which offered advice on how to find an apartment, mix a cocktail, and manage a love affair. As Scutts writes in this study of Hillis and her era, the idea that unmarried women could be happy and fulfilled challenged ‘the very basis of American women’s citizenship.’ Hillis’s subsequent books defended the ideal of female independence, even through the ‘retrenchment into domesticity’ of the postwar era. As Scutts argues, it’s an ideal that still requires defending today: ‘Exercising the right to live your life as you choose is still a political act, and a brave act.’”—“Briefly Noted,” New Yorker

“Scutts should feel proud that she did what she set out to do: return Hillis to her rightful place in the pantheon of women who made it possible for the rest of us to enjoy that freedom.” —Ellen McCarthy, Washington Post

“Scutts’s book, written with an enticing no-nonsense clarity that is reminiscent of Hillis’s original, acts as both a biography of Hillis and paints a fascinating portrait of the cultural context surrounding her work. “—Lucy Scholes, The National 

“Smart and enjoyable. . . Scutts’s affectionate portrait of Hillis helps draw a line from her subject’s cheerful independence to the choices we enjoy today.”—Barbara Spindel, Christian Science Monitor

“[Marjorie Hillis] died in 1971, but as Scutts reminds us, her audacious celebration of female independence can still amuse and inspire us today. She and Scutts’s wonderful book should be toasted with well-mixed cocktails.”—Anna Carey, The Irish Times

“The Live-Aloner’s fight to be accepted in her full humanity is a battle her great-granddaughters (or great-grandnieces) are still waging.”—Dawn Raffel, San Francisco Chronicle

“Though her advice about bed jackets and bubble baths seems quaint today, [Hillis’s] celebration of solitude, independence and integrity is, as Scutts reminds us, worth reviving.”—Linda Simon, Newsday

“Historian Joanna Scutts puts Hillis into the context of her time, in an engrossing book that’s part biography of Hillis and part cultural history of women in 20th century America.”—Constance Grady, Vox

“It may be useful for younger women disdainful of feminism to be reminded of just how crippling and pernicious gender-based restrictions once were.”—Julia M. Klein, Chicago Tribune

“In The Extra Woman, Joanna Scutts makes it clear that somebody was working those fields long before the ineffable [Helen Gurley Brown] stuck in her spade. . . . Part biography, part social history, The Extra Woman is Ms. Scutts’s eye-opening . . . attempt to rescue Hillis from obscurity and to make the case for her as a proto-feminist.”—Joanne Kaufman, Wall Street Journal [paywall]