all the things she said; a review

All the things she said: Everything I Know About Modern Lesbian and Bi Culture by Daisy Jones

Publisher: Coronet ¦ Hodder & Stoughton

Publication Date: June 3rd, 2021

A modern, personal guide to the culture of queer women and everyone in between. 

All The Things She Said explores the nature of 21st century queerness. Lesbian and bi culture is ever-changing and here, journalist Daisy Jones unpicks outdated stereotypes and shows how, over the past few years, the style and shared language of queer women has slowly infiltrated the mainstream. (Think less hemp sandals, IKEA trips and nut milks and more freedom, expression, community. And Cate Blanchett.)

From the dingy basement clubs of east London to the unchartered realms of TikTok, cutting in DIY mullets and christening Meryl Streep ‘Daddy’, Daisy explores the multifaceted nature of what it means to be lesbian or bi today, while also looking back and celebrating the past. 

The book shines a light on the never-ending process of coming out, what it’s like to date as a queer woman, how physical nightlife spaces have evolved into online communities and the reasons why mental health issues have disproportionately impacted LGBTQ+ people.

As someone immersed in the queer culture of women, Daisy brings both the personal perspective and a journalistic one to this changing landscape. Through interviews and lived experience, a cohesive image emerges: one which shows that being lesbian, bi, or anything in between, isn’t necessarily always tied to gender, sexual practice or even romantic attraction. 

With verve, humour and razor-sharp prose, Daisy paints a vital and insightful modern day portrait of what it means to be a queer woman in 2021.

I was gracefully awarded an advanced review copy of this publication through NetGalley.

What can I say about this book that hasn’t already been covered by the in-depth synopsis? (also curtesy of NetGalley). It was an incredibly refreshing read; Daisy really immerses you in the culture she is portraying – a culture of early queer establishments, exploring diversity, and forming online queer communities.

Daisy provides a timeline of queer night life in the UK, and how safe spaces and queer-only establishments were established. Within, there is a clear picture of what I would determine to be a very real, and very raw depictions of queer lifestyles throughout adolescence. Through her words, we are witness to a much different life (read: the city life) as a young queer person in England.

I really enjoyed reading this and learning a lot about the night life, fashion, musical interests of LGBTQ+ communities in the early 2000’s. Of particular interest was the chapter regarding the eponym of the book; t.A.T.u’s 2002 hit single All the Things She Said. I had read urban-text myths of the origins for the music video, and how the duo were forced by their record producers, so it was interesting to read a journalist’s perspective and research on the topic.

  • I recommend this book for;
    • readers who enjoy essay-style non-fiction
    • readers interested in personal accounts of LGBTQ+ peoples
    • readers interested in 2000’s gay night club scene in London
    • readers interested in biographies

Places to pre-order:

Waterstones ¦ Amazon ¦ Book Depository ¦ Gays the Word ¦ Queer Lit

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