Praise for Body of Stars:
“Rapturously written and wildly original, Laura Maylene Walter’s debut novel maps the dreams and nightmares of girlhood. Like the best dystopian fiction, Body of Stars is both an allegory of our own world and a door that opens to a better one. Our lives may be written on our bodies, but our futures are not.”
—Emily Schultz, author of The Blondes and Little Threats
“Body of Stars sparks with tenderness and beauty, and Walter’s writing on the female body is genuine art. A thought-provoking exploration of fate and forced binaries, this is a book that lingers.”
—Erika Swyler, author of Light from Other Stars and The Book of Speculation
“A tender rebuke to the idea that biology is destiny, Body of Stars explores the boundaries of family, identity, and predestination. Through the lens of a complex coming-of-age story, Laura Maylene Walter asks us to consider how we can make the future matter when it seems like we already know its outlines, and what the difference is between the destiny of an individual and the fate of a society.”
—Adrienne Celt, author of Invitation to a Bonfire
“Part allegory, part warning, and part celebration of the female body, this is a thrilling and flawlessly crafted debut about the potential women have to hold magic, make magic, and change the course of history with the underestimated weapons of intelligence and love.”
—Courtney Maum, author of Touch and Costalegre
“What a gift Laura Maylene Walter has given us in Body of Stars. Through the lens of dystopia, this incandescent debut novel holds a critical mirror up to our world’s limitations on gender and the violence of those restraints, while it also forges a bold vision for agency, self-determination and freedom. Through and through, this is a powerful and luminous book.”
—Anne Valente, award-winning author of The Desert Sky Before Us
“In Body of Stars, Laura Maylene Walter has created the kind of alternate reality that feels wonderfully, thrillingly strange, until you realize it’s all too familiar. This tantalizing, powerful debut bewitched me from page one and left me unable to see our world—not to mention our collective psyche—in quite the same way again.”
—Anna Solomon, award-winning author of The Book of V.
“In Laura Maylene Walter’s Body of Stars, women’s bodies are their destinies, resulting in a cruel, predatory world for young girls. Yet siblings Celeste and Miles show strength and courage against the malevolent forces surrounding them. Walter writes with tenderness, empathy and beauty. An unusual, bewitching tale.”
—Bina Shah, author of Before She Sleeps
“Laura Maylene Walter’s Body of Stars will be enjoyed as a novel that employs the fantastic to inventively explore both the victimization and the power of women in a world very much like our own, but its central pleasure and achievement may be its depiction of a complicated and extraordinarily moving sibling relationship. In Walter’s generous and capable hands, Miles and Celeste remind us that love often means damage, and that the true test of love is not avoiding that damage, but repairing it when we’ve caused it.”
—Karen Shepard, author of Kiss Me Someone
From debut novelist Laura Maylene Walter, a bold and dazzling exploration of fate and female agency in a world very similar to our own—except that the markings on women’s bodies reveal the future.
Perfect for fans of Leni Zumas’s Red Clocks and Naomi Alderman’s The Power, Body of Stars is a unique and timely exploration of girlhood, womanhood, and toxic masculinity. A piercing indictment of rape culture, it is an inventive and urgent read about what happens when women are objectified and stripped of choice—and what happens when they fight back.
Body of Stars publishes March 16, 2021 from Dutton/Penguin in the US and March 18, 2021 from Hodder Studio in the UK. Pre-order today: