Library Journal Review
Gr 8 Up-Since she was in eighth grade, Mara has held onto a secret that has shamed and hollowed her. She couldn't even tell her twin brother, Owen, from whom she's been inseparable since birth. Now, in high school, this secret has even cost her a loving relationship with her best friend-turned-girlfriend Charlie. Mara's hurting, but determined to put all that pain into her work with Empowered, her feminist magazine. When Hannah, Mara's friend and her brother's girlfriend, accuses Owen of rape, the world as Mara knew it shatters. Though Owen vehemently denies it, Mara believes Hannah, in part because of the secret Mara can barely admit to herself. For the first time in her life, Mara is alone and navigating the murky waters of deeply conflicting feelings. While nearly everyone in the story is hiding something-Charlie, for instance, is genderfluid, but not ready to tell their parents-Hannah's experience is out in the open and talking about it becomes a healing catalyst for Mara. The book explores so many topics-consent, slut shaming, rape culture, what it means to move on from trauma-but the tone never veers into pedantic territory, and the pace moves remarkably quickly for such heavy and emotional content. VERDICT A compassionate and engaging novel about what it means to tell your truth, no matter how painful it might be. A must-read for all YA shelves.-Leighanne Law, Scriber Lake High School, WA © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Booklist Review
*Starred Review* As the #MeToo movement continues to ignite the sharing of women's stories on- and off-line around consent, assault, and sexual agency, so too will the growing number of young adult novels that center around these formative topics. Blake's timely and gripping contribution is a nuanced he-said, she-said story with a fierce feminist bent. When Mara's twin brother, Owen, is accused of rape by his girlfriend, Hannah a young woman Mara trusts implicitly ­she's forced to reexamine everything she's always believed to be true about him. Meanwhile, Mara herself is finding footing in a friendship with her ex, Charlie. Charlie's self-assurance as a young genderqueer person and a rising musician directly contrasts with Mara's own insecurities about her identity, which are informed by a past trauma that the accusations against Owen threaten to expose. Blake's provocative work is full of bracing descriptions of Mara's internal conflicts: How can she love Owen so deeply but revile his alleged behavior? How does Mara make peace with her own sexual tragedy while holding space for Hannah? Unforgettable in its candor, Girl Made of Stars is ideal for teen readers who can handle the candid emotional intricacies of burgeoning sexuality and all its myriad possible pitfalls.--Walters Wright, Lexi Copyright 2018 Booklist