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Review of Watching Women and Girls by Danielle Pender


Danielle Pender's debut short story collection examines how women and girls are looked at, and how the ways in which we are observed and perceived shapes the way we see and treat ourselves. Pender cleverly picks up on how women subvert this gaze and how they perform for it, how they internalise it, police themselves, and project it.



There are many lenses through which women are looked at within these stories, including class, work, family and friendship to name a few. From tales of fierce friendship between teenage girls to new motherhood and older women finding new freedom, there's a range of life experiences to be found here, and yet all feel universal - and comforting in their ability to be so. Even at its most uncomfortable moments, this is a book that will make you feel connected to fellow women, and there's a real beauty in that. Watching Women and Girls feels like a real passion project from Danielle Pender and I'll be watching (get it?) to see what she turns to next.


Review by Abi.

Watching Women and Girls was published on 23/06/22 by HarperCollins.


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