The New Yorker posted the National Book Award for Young People’s Literature Longlist on September 12, and Elana K. Arnold’s YA novel What Girls Are Made Of is one of the ten titles on the list!
How Elana found out
At 7:30 am at her home in California, Elana discovered she had been tagged in a post on Instagram.
“I had already gotten coffee and was sandwiched between my dogs, Phoebe and Poppy. I followed the link and was absolutely dumbfounded to see where it took me.”
Of course, it led to a New Yorker article that included ten titles by YA authors including Jason Reynolds, Rita Williams-Garcia, and Angie Thomas.
“I write weird young adult novels. What Girls Are Made Of is the weirdest; it’s uncomfortable to read, and it deals with a range of unsettling topics, including the ways we culturally objectify the young female body.”
And so What Girls Are Made Of has become the weird little novel that could.
“I hope that the recognition of What Girls Are Made Of alongside the other wonderful feminist books on the National Book Award Longlist means that we no longer qualify books about women and girls, written by women, as ‘women’s literature’ or ‘chick lit.’ Books about the female experience are books about the human experience.”
What Girls Are Made Of
Raw. Compelling. Unflinching. What girls are made of might just surprise you.
When Nina Faye was fourteen, her mother told her there was no such thing as unconditional love. Nina believed her. Now she’ll do anything for the boy she loves, to prove she’s worthy of him. But when he breaks up with her, Nina is lost. What is she if not a girlfriend? What is she made of? Broken-hearted, Nina tries to figure out what the conditions of love are.
Read a sample chapter today!
Praise for What Girls Are Made Of
★ “Unflinchingly candid, unapologetically girl, and devastatingly vital.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews
“Finally, finally, a book that is fully girl, with all of the gore and grace of growing up female exposed.” —Carrie Mesrobian, author of the William C. Morris Award finalist Sex & Violence
“With a deft hand, Elana K. Arnold opens up a conversation about how girls survive as a whole when they are too often acknowledged only for their parts.”—Christa Desir, author of Other Broken Things
“Shows the true, beautiful, and confounding complexity of women. This one will rip your heart out.”— Martha Brockenbrough, author of The Game Of Love and Death
“The author presents a hopeful conclusion as Nina learns that self-love and fulfillment can be found through helping others.”—School Library Journal