On Thursday, March 18th at 4:00pm PDT Warwick's will host Laura Maylene Walter as she discusses her new book, Body of Stars, in conversation with Huda Al-Marashi. Laura Maylene Walter is a writer and editor in Cleveland. Her writing has appeared in Poets & Writers, Kenyon Review, The Sun, Ninth Letter, The Masters Review, and many other publications. She has been a Tin House Scholar, a recipient of the Ohioana Library Association's Walter Rumsey Marvin Grant, and a writer-in-residence at Yaddo, the Chautauqua Institution, and Art Omi: Writers. Body of Stars is her debut novel.
Celeste Morton has eagerly awaited her passage to adulthood. Like every girl, she was born with a set of childhood markings - the freckles, moles, and birthmarks on her body that foretell her future and that of those around her - and with puberty will come a new set of predictions that will solidify her fate. The possibilities are tantalizing enough to outweigh the worry that the future she dreams of won't be the one she's fated to have and the fear of her "changeling period" the time when women are nearly irresistible to men and the risk of abduction is rife.
Celeste's beloved brother, Miles, is equally anticipating her transition to adulthood. As a skilled interpreter of the future, a field that typically excludes men, Miles considers Celeste his practice ground - and the only clue to what his own future will bring. But when Celeste changes, she learns a devastating secret about Miles's fate: a secret that could destroy her family, a secret she will do anything to keep. Yet Celeste isn't the only one keeping secrets, and when the lies of brother and sister collide, it leads to a tragedy that will irrevocably change Celeste's fate, set her on a path to fight against the inherent misogyny of fortune-telling, and urge her to create a future that is truly her own.
Huda Al-Marashi is the author of First Comes Marriage: My Not-So-Typical American Love Story, a memoir the Washington Post called “a charming, funny, heartbreaking memoir of faith, family, and the journey to love.” Her other writing has also appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the LA Times, al Jazeera, and elsewhere. First Comes Marriage was longlisted for the Chautauqua Prize and a finalist for the Southern California Independent Booksellers’ Award.