Grove Press
Grove Press
Grove Press

The Book for Dangerous Women

A Guide to Modern Life

by Clare Conville

A witty bedside companion about the vicissitudes of modern life, for today’s woman.

  • Imprint Grove Hardcover
  • Page Count 336
  • Publication Date May 01, 2012
  • ISBN-13 978-0-8021-2018-2
  • Dimensions 5.5" x 7.25"
  • US List Price $20.00

About The Book

The Book for Dangerous Women is a sly, elegant encyclopedia of practical wisdom by three women who know a bit about life and bring their myriad experiences to bear on topics such as marriage, infidelity, motherhood, sex, fashion, friendship, work, and self-discovery.

More than five hundred entries of sage advice show us how to get through life with a little grace and a lot of fun—from how to accept compliments to when to wear “cami-knickers,” to how to deal with ambivalence (toward lovers, friends, or foes), and why owning a cat and a fancy dress may be more fulfilling than sex. Like a dictionary, topics are cross-referenced and many include insights from the famed and infamous, such as Oscar Wilde, Coco Chanel, Mae West, Eve Ensler, Albert Camus, Anaïs Nin, and William Shakespeare. A typical progression of entries is: Affairs, Age, Arrangements, Bananas, Beauty, and Beds, followed by Bereavement, Birthdays, BFs, Blueberries, and Bolt Holes.

From those conversations and counseling sessions with your mother, sisters, daughters, and friends to those moments in life that only women can understand, The Book for Dangerous Women is the grown-up and contemporary reference book every woman needs.


“Stunningly funny.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Live as well as you dare is the marvelous motto of this compendium, The Book for Dangerous Women, an effervescent A-Z filled with wise words and witty anecdotes.” —Easy Living (UK)

“A feisty new guide to getting the most out of life . . . Essential feminine wit and wisdom.” —S Magazine/Sunday Express (UK)

“‘Live as well as you dare’ is the marvelous motto of the compendium, The Book for Dangerous Women, an effervescent A-Z filled with wise words and witty anecdotes.” —Easy Living (UK)

“Celebrates the art of being fabulous and female at fifteen, fifty, and far beyond.” —Daily Telegraph (UK)

“A feisty, must-have reference book . . .” —Joanne Guidoccio, The Record



Should you or shouldn’t you? The answer is you shouldn’t. But, as it’s crucial to the excitement of having one to let all experience, wisdom, and proffered advice go out the window, you are probably going to go ahead anyway. An affair can be excitingly illicit, deeply passionate, and often liberating—all the things that a long-term relationship isn’t. Affairs can also bring heartbreak, not just to the two people involved, but to their respective partners, children, and extended families.

If you are unable to practice self-restraint here are some guidelines:

1. Be discreet.

2. Don’t neglect your children.

3. Suspenders and stockings are always good.

4. Remember your friends, as you may need them in due course.

5. However wonderful it is, remind yourself occasionally that most affairs have a lifetime of six months to two years.

6. Don’t slag off your lover’s partner or join in when he does it. It’s unfair and it’s undignified.

7. If your lover is in a relationship and you are single, only you are allowed to set the rules.

8. If your lover tells you he wants to try and make his marriage work, have the good grace to let him try.

9. Occasionally put yourself through the shipwreck scenario, i.e. what are all the long-term options, both good and bad? Be honest with yourself.

10. If your lover’s partner becomes seriously ill in any way, his job is to support her. You must put your relationship on hold.

11. Protect your heart. (v: Cami-knickers, Contraception, Creative corsetry, Family therapy, Grief, I don’t, Lawyers, Loss, Money matters, Rejection, Teenagers)


“The appreciative laughter of a girl, however charming, is not to be compared to the deep pleasurable laughter in which a woman of intelligence can envelop a man.” —Daily Mail, 25 January 2010, Howard Jacobson
(v: Female comedians)


A beautiful, well-toned arm is sexy, and light work with weights and regular swimming will deliver results. However, if you do have a tendency to bingo wings, a forgiving cropped sleeve will do the trick.

Port de bras in ballet means “the carriage of the arms,” where the aim is to be graceful, poised and seamless at all times. Love your arms.

(v: Boxing, Pilates, Wild swimming)