"Although Lazarin’s work has the tone and style of traditional mainstream short fiction, it joins a growing canon of quietly realist stories that establish women’s experiences as worthy of literary attention. And not just women’s experiences: These stories also explore the exhausting, slow poison of masculine power, the grind of the patriarchy on even the most privileged of women, the subtle ways in which men have trained women to minimize themselves." –Carmen Maria Machado for THE NEW YORK TIMES

"Danielle Lazarin’s first story collection, “Back Talk,” is a marvel of its kind, and it’s marvelous precisely in its Munrovian shiftiness, its ability to bend form and turn the story into something that is temporally and emotionally elastic." SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE

"The protagonists of Lazarin’s stories—daughters, mothers, siblings, girlfriends, wives—are gauging their strengths and soft spots, the ways in which they are independent and intertwined with those around them, their appetites for and aversions to risk and heartache, the truths they choose to know and those they cannot escape...Sensitive, intricate, and quietly powerful, Lazarin’s stories give voice to women learning to live on their own terms."KIRKUS REVIEWS (Starred)

""Lazarin’s exceptional debut collection digs deep into the lives of women, telling complex stories of loss, hope, and joy... Lazarin’s work is confident and exhilarating; this auspicious collection is uniformly excellent."PUBLISHER'S WEEKLY (Starred)

"Lazarin’s first collection of short stories focuses on the ordinary lives of women and girls in a brilliant and tender way....With poignant imagery and a fresh voice, Lazarin portrays these women honestly and relatably. Her exceptional craftsmanship speaks to the heart, as she paints these tales with empathy and a compassion that extends to all humankind." BOOKLIST (Starred)

"In this powerful debut, Lazarin has written her heart out chronicling the lives of recognizable girls and women as they come of age, find their footing and chart their path through life’s curves, on their own terms. She takes the reader into the crevices and corners of these women’s minds, where you can accompany them on their daydreams as they leave or enter relationships, or just generally try to figure it all out. Their voices stay with you long after the final story." THE RUMPUS


The Internal Conversation Is Constant
Interview with Peter Kispert

We talk about debut story collections, family, interiors of characters, second projects and push pins. Interview with T Hetzel

Finding Power in Pain: in conversation with Jessie Chaffee
“I think to only try to write women that are likable seems like the worst kind of trap of the patriarchy, right?”

As women writers, we tend to undersell ourselves, and be afraid to be vulnerable, or we doubt the moments when we're strong on the page. For me, I think, finding that place where you can be vulnerable and strong at the same time is what I want, because I think that's how women are."

“Back Talk”: The stories women tell each other behind closed doors Interview with Mary Elizabeth Williams

by Kirkus Reviews

In ‘Back Talk,’ Danielle Lazarin Excavates Women’s Unspoken Feelings
Interview with Alina Cohen

Writers to Watch

Danielle Lazarin Discusses Female Expression in a Society That Stymies It

Listen on iTunes or Stitcher
"I loved how the stories forced me to confront my own bias and my own prejudice that comes from a lifetime of reading women portrayed as too emotional, irrational, or as other types that are easy to dismiss. As I read each of these stories, I saw the way I expected the plot to go, and then marveled at Danielle’s refusal to take the easy way out."
–Caroline Donahue

Interview with Lee Thomas
"I wrote and revised many of these stories with the sort of anger she describes, that low-level fury that exists in part because we are told as women that our fury isn’t worthy of being a story, that we shouldn’t ask for more, that we should be happy to have what we’ve been given as women, any voice at all, any space."

Literary Magnet
"It’s no coincidence that most of the stories in Danielle Lazarin’s debut collection, Back Talk—a book about women, and edited, agented, and publicized by women—were first published in journals with female editors...The voices of women ring out in Back Talk...the stories show women of all ages negotiating the minor and major travails of modern life."


“This is the collection to read if you're hungering for the stories of women who subvert, who flick at the misogyny that surrounds them...Lazarin has a talent for crafting dynamics that are so real; the friendships, the families, the insidious ways women are undermined is all on display.” —Kat Chow for NPR

"The word "haunting" is so often overused, but in this case, it is an accurate description of how these stories, set between New York and Paris, maneuver their way into your thoughts long after reading" —Angela Ledgerwood for Esquire

Forget about what women want; as Lazarin illustrates in gorgeous, limpid paragraphs that will make you go back for more, the more appropriate question is, what don’t women want?...Back Talk is a pulsing, muscular heart of a collection that is as good as any I have read in years." BookPage

"A dazzling debut full of gritty, realistic characters, a refreshingly honest voice, and exhilarating writing." Camilla, Bookseller at Changing Hands Bookstore

“The women and girls in Danielle Lazarin’s deeply affecting debut story collection are desperate for connection, whether to family members or friends or acquaintances thrown together by circumstance. There are also a few love interests, but this is not a book about romantic love—it’s about the loneliness that is a companion to so much of the love we undertake.” —Maris Kreizman for Esquire

"Read this book to feel heard, seen, and understood." —Read It Forward

“Super compelling” Ann Friedman, Call Your Girlfriend

"Danielle Lazarin’s debut collection features stories of marriage, families, love, and loss that emit a vibe so low-key and unrushed at the outset that they startle when their depth of characterization, insight, and feeling dawns." B&N Reads

"To write about quiet episodes in ordinary lives in a way that readers can’t look away from takes talent, and Lazarin’s got it, big-time." —Mary Laura Philpott

"Danielle Lazarin's Back Talk is the ultimate collection of stories centered on the experience of women and girls — and we can't recommend it highly enough." Pop Sugar

"This is a powerful and tender collection." Thrillist

“This fantastic debut short story collection is filled with excellent stories of women and girls, centering on their lives in a way that feels refreshingly real. If you couldn't get enough of ‘Cat Person,’ this collection should be next on your list.” Bustle

“Lazarin delivers a powerful look at the moments that define relationships. It’s a phenomenal debut.” HelloGiggles

“Grief, love, wariness, empathy, the confusions of simply being a woman—these are emotions that most of us feel but sometimes find difficult to express. Lazarin gives us the tools to do just that.” O, The Oprah Magazine

"Lazarin...explores questions of grief, the emotional toll we can expect from others, and the unexpected ways that we do (or do not) connect with those around us. It’s powerful stuff, handled in unexpected ways."—Vol.1 Brooklyn