Watching Women & Girls

Watching Women & Girls

Danielle Pender

Pub date
Fourth Estate
A5 141x222mm
272 pages
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Book Overview

When you look at a woman, who do you see?

“Every aspect of her body or personality was up for inspection: too big, too small, too available, too hidden, too much, not enough.”

A wedding day brings back memories of sisterhood and betrayals; a motorway service station burger bar is the site of explosive violence, but also strange bonds; a trip home forces a reminder of a life-changing, lost friendship; a woman confronts her own infidelity; an artist celebrates a life spent in observation.

This debut collection movingly explores how women and girls are looked at, look at one another, and look at themselves, and how living as an object can shape their passions, fears, and joys. With a clear eye and dark humour, Danielle Pender considers sex, parenting, grief and class as lenses for the ways in which the world watches women — and how women are always watching back.

About the author

Born in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Danielle gained her BA in History of Modern Art, Design & Film at Northumbria University and MA in Creative Writing at Newcastle University. In 2013 she founded Riposte, a bi-annual print publication that offers a diverse and nuanced reflection on the lives of modern women which has attracted a loyal readership and following world-wide. She has written for other publications including Refinery 29, It’s Nice That, Apartamento, amongst others. She currently lives in London with her husband and daughter. This is her debut collection of short stories.


  • ‘Watching Women and Girls is a searing meditation on the moments that make, and break, us. As canny as they are entertaining, these stories are packed with emotional intelligence, capturing the dark and the light of the female experience in a series of vignettes that every one of us will in some way relate to. I loved it.’Charlotte Philby, author of The Second Woman
  • ‘Vibrant, intense and darkly comic, this is a powerful and thoughtful collection told through closely observed, spellbinding characters that stay with you.’Abigail Bergstrom, author and agent