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On the Front Line with the Women Who Fight Back

4.29  ·  Rating details ·  1,384 ratings  ·  107 reviews

Put yourself in their shoes.

In 2007, Stacey Dooley was a twenty-something working in fashion retail. She was selected to take part in the BBC series Blood, Sweat and T-Shirts which saw her live and work alongside Indian factory workers making clothes for the UK High Street. This sparked her series of hugely popular investigations, establishing her as one of BBC3’s most
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Published (first published February 15th 2019)
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Lucy Langford

I am absolutely obsessed with Stacey Dooley's documentaries and have followed her work for quite a few years... so when I heard she was releasing a book I was ecstatic !

This book follows the many women she has met during her travels across the world. The women she meets usually come from impoverished conditions and have had to deal with horrifying events, something very different to how I live my every day life.

Stacey gives such an important voice to these women, she gives them a chance to
Schizanthus Nerd
I’ve followed Stacey’s career from fashion loving teen travelling to India through to the professional journalist she is today, watching and rewatching every documentary each time they’ve aired on television. When I first heard she was releasing a book I was so keen to get my hands on it ASAP. I read the blurb and immediately thought of DVD Special Features. I imagined Stacey’s book as a combination of Deleted Scenes and Director’s Commentary, but it was so much more.

What I love about Stacey’s
Mar 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2019
This is a written account of Stacey Dooley and some of the documentaries that she has made, in different countries.
It was a fascinating, sobering read and Stacey deals with the most difficult subjects with such maturity that I couldn't help but be really impressed by her.
It will not be for everyone, because of the subject matters, but it is a very good read.
The only thing that bought it down a little for me, was just that a lot of the situations were just so bleak, and there were no
Aug 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm a big fan of Stacey's documentaries and always used to watch them on bbc3. This book was really about Stacey's life, the many documentaries she has done and a bit of behind the scenes info from them. It was really fascinating. I would like to read more of her work and in all honesty she could publish a whole book on each of the adventures she has been on, I would like to hear about them in more detail. The only downside was there were a few repeats in the book, a few spelling and grammar ...more
Bronte Harris
Jan 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fantastic book

I loved this book, and even though I’ve seen all of Stacey’s documentaries it was like re-watching them through a new set of eyes. The chapters are quite long but necessary to give enough time to each story. Stacey does a fantastic job of maintaining her down to earth presenting style throughout the book and it’s so easy to read. The things these poor people have been through are shocking and upsetting and the book helps shine a light on those that need support the most. Would
Kate Henderson
Apr 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Listened via audible. Loved it!! Stacey relived a lot of moments from her various documentaries over the last 10 years. But she also gave added insight.
Wish it was longer and more in depth felt like she was only skimming the service.
Loved her narration. Felt so calming and like talking to a friend.
Really easy yet powerful listen!
Jan 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Stacey Dooley is an unexpected serious journalist and documentary maker. As she says herself, she is a girl from Luton who spent her wages of clothes and having fun. Until she didn't any more. Until she became aware of where all the fashion she enjoyed came from, and at what cost. And then began the awakening that has resulted in this important docu-journalist telling essential stories.

I have seen some of her documentaries and I think they work as television because she is not your average
Feb 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: feminism
'While her two young daughters watched, he went for her with the machete and hacked off one of her legs at the ankle and the other mid-calf, leaving her with two bloody stumps and a massive gash across one thigh. He made sure she couldn't leave. She literally couldn't walk away.'

'The girls were my number one priority. You need to be able to look at yourself in a mirror at the end of a day's filming and feel totally happy with how you've treated those around you. You have to ask yourself, If I
Amy Hamilton
Mar 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Full disclaimer, I've loved Stacey Dooley and her documentaries for years so I was really excited to see she was going to be publishing a memoir discussing her time making documentaries. I actually consumed this through the audiobook version of the book which is narrated by Dooley herself which I found really entertaining. Overall, this book is thought provoking and has an important integral message to it - women are hit harder by global problems than men (women includes trans-women and sex ...more
Hannah Milner
Jan 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've never seen any of Stacey Dooley's documentaries so I didn't know what to expect with this book. I didn't particularly like the way it was written with its colloquial language but once I got past this, the book and the message itself were really powerful, thought-provoking and eye opening. She covers women's struggles in many different contexts and I learned a lot from reading this book. I would recommend anyone to read it to learn about and inform themselves of the struggles that women face ...more
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fact
I have always liked Stacey Dooley's documentaries. Almost felt that I probably wasn't really her target audience (female - yes, rather too old though) but liked her very personal way of dealing with extremely difficult environments. This book is written exactly as she presents her documentaries; personable, friendly, approachable and very honest. She gives a resume of the important woman she has met during her various adventures and her feelings about the situations they have found themselves in ...more
Lee Johnson
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
OK I will be totally honest, I knew nothing of Stacey Dooley before seeing her on Strictly Come Dancing (yes I know). I think it is sad that she is now getting abuse from some quarters for doing 'light' entertainment as opposed to her previous work.

After reading this I am going to seek out her documentaries as some of the things featured in this book are absolutely incredible.

An excellent book, from someone who has experienced some incredibly distressing scenes, but also met ladies who have
Apr 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Prison; Immigration; Drugs; Child abuse; Femicide; High-end to low-end prostitution; Trans prostitution; Abortion; Child sexualisation; Murder; The Yazidi Women: War; Survival.
Emma-Hope Newitt
loved it, really inspiring and uplifting read!
May 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I knew I was going to love this; I'm a massive fan of Stacey Dooley and as soon as I saw she'd released a book I knew I needed the audiobook version.

Her writing voice is accessible and absorbing, and her speaking voice is friendly and charming. The women featured in the book I've seen before in Stacey's countless fantastic documentaries and to hear more about their lives and Stacey's feelings towards their situations was super compelling.

I'll definitely be recommending this to people.
Oct 01, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I'm quitting with this book.
she manages to turn everyone's story around and back to her which is pissing me off.
Her privilege certainly shines through alot.
Julie Reynolds
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
:-(. Sad. That is all.
Feb 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Strong and poignant

Wow what a book. It delves deep into what h happening everywhere and doesn't stop at certain points but del established even deeper than most journalists would, giving a perspective from every angle. It's very moving, heart breaking and soul delving.
Mar 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book adds another dimension to Stacey’s previous documentaries, her writing style is effortless and very easy to read. The book is harrowing and eye opening, I would definitely recommend giving it a read.
Michelle B
Feb 15, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I remember watching Stacey on her the first BBC programme in which she appeared, “Blood, Sweat and TShirts”. I liked her instantly; her straightforward talking, innocence and naivety. I have watched several more of her documentaries over the years and like how she has retained her own style whilst growing in intelligence and as a woman.
She writes well in her own voice (I assume with the aide of a ghostwriter).
The book documents some of stories of the women whom Stacey has met on her travels with
Book-Lover Book Blog
I'm a massive fan of Stacey Dooley's documentaries, I've watched them all and some I've even watched multiples times. They're informative, emotional and very in-depth and her book is just the same but in her own words; completely her own.

I was so excited to see that she'd released a book and I was quick to go to Amazon to buy it. I was completely engrossed, reading about the women Stacey has been in contact with around the world, and with each chapter, I remember each episode.

Very well written
Mar 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Until recently I had never heard the name Stacey Dooley , what brought her to my attention was the controversy surrounding her Red Nose Day film. A lot of what was being levelled at her seemed to be very negative. So while at my local book store I came across this book I was curious to see what she was like behind all those headlines. But that wasn't all, I have read many books about the hard lives women have to leave from around the world. It brings me constant reminders of what I fail to see ...more
Mar 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: netgallery
Stacey Dooley, a name that is linked with amazing hard-hitting BBC documentaries, ones that you talk about the next day in the office and do some more of your own research on wanting to know more about the subject. The book was no different, I’ll be talking about it tomorrow in the office trying to get everyone to read it!

I remember seeing Stacey when I was younger, she is so relatable and down to earth being honest at every turn. In her documentaries she covers many different topics around the
Lisa Jay
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm the biggest Stacey Dooley fan and this is such a wonderful book in so many ways. What I really love about Stacey is how determined she is to find and shine light on the positives, no matter what the situation. I love that she's put the complete focus of this book on how strong girls and women are. It's truly heartwarming and uplifting. If I'd seen and heard with my own eyes and ears even a quarter of what Stacey has, I would have found it hard not to ramble on for 300 pages in a pure bitter ...more
Sam Herbert
Feb 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I LOVE Stacey Dooley; she is my ultimate woman crush. I've watched all her documentaries, I follow her on Instagram, I've even had a chat with her via Twitter a few times. So I was chuffed when she released a book, documenting her journey across the world to places stricken with war, poverty, drugs and sexual violence. From Mexico, where people are dying trying to cross the desert to get into America; to the way transgender sex workers are treated in Brazil; to Canada, where thousands of women ...more
Robert Matthew
Dec 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An accompaniment to the BBC3 documentaries

In this book Stacey Dooley revisits her BBC3 documentaries, to bring to attention the trials faced by women and girls across the world, and the people working to make things right.

At the time of this review, the documentaries she refers back to are all available on iPlayer, in honour of her participation (and victory in) the BBC show Strictly Come Dancing. It is well worth viewing these in tandem with the book if you have the chance, but it is not
Mar 17, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this after watching one of Stacey's documentaries: I loved her approach and was so impressed by her courage. I found the book interesting and a very tough read, for obvious reasons. It's rather affecting to spend a week reading about the atrocities going on in the world today, and it definitely made me want to do something to help, and make others more aware. I also enjoyed learning more about Stacey, as her personality is such an important draw in the documentaries, and she comes across ...more
Olivia Rae Marshall
What a fantastic and educational book! Aside from being genuinely fab, Stacey is also a really down-to-earth writer who adopts the same conversational and chatty style that she does on the screen. The book begins by detailing how, in 2007, Stacey was working in a retail establishment and was a consumer of fast-fashion, giving little thought to the processes behind the making of her clothes and the labour involved. She signed up to take part in a BBC series Blood, Sweat and T-Shirts, and to her ...more
Not a bad collection....but in some ways I felt it was maybe lacking in the substance that the documentaries these writings are inspired by..I say maybe as I don't think I have seen any.
It's an interesting collection and in many ways is very BBC3 as it does seem politics for the young and vibrant and not old gits like me...that's no bad thing we need journalists of the future and although Stacey as yet doesn't come across from these writings as a strong proposition I do believe going through the
Helen Ashforth-Foster
The title of this book is a little misleading. From the title my expectation was for a in depth coverage of the different challenges women face and how they are fighting against this injustice. However the book read more like an exploration in how Stacey Dooley has grown and learnt as a reporter. Whilst this is interesting the book feels like those women who Stacey Dooley has come across are sidelined in the narrative in favour of praise of various editors or BBC commissioners that she has ...more
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“You have to be a strong fierce female. The world is tricky and I think if you don’t fight for what you believe in – if you don’t try and be the change that you want to see, however cheesy it sounds – what’s the point? Especially as we live in a country where you’re able to do that without being thrown in jail or persecuted. You have the right, you have your voice” 0 likes
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