2015 Alex Award Recipient!
Maren Yearly is a young woman who wants the same things we all do. She wants to be someone people admire and respect. She wants to be loved. But her secret, shameful needs have forced her into exile. She hates herself for the bad thing she does, for what it's done to her family and her sense of identity; for how it dictates her place in the world and how people see her--how they judge her. She didn't choose to be this way.
Because Maren Yearly doesn't just break hearts, she devours them. Ever since her mother found Penny Wilson's eardrum in her mouth when Maren was just two years old, she knew life would never be normal for either of them. Love may come in many shapes and sizes, but for Maren, it always ends the same-with her hiding the evidence and her mother packing up the car.
But when her mother abandons her the day after her sixteenth birthday, Maren goes looking for the father she has never known, and finds much more than she bargained for along the way.
Faced with a world of fellow eaters, potential enemies, and the prospect of love, Maren realizes she isn't only looking for her father, she's looking for herself.
Camille DeAngelis' Bones & All is an astonishingly original coming-of-age tale that is at once a gorgeously written horror story as well as a mesmerizing meditation on female power and sexuality.
DeAngelis , who coincidentally went vegan shortly before starting work on this novel, serves up a cannibal story that successfully blends metaphor with the macabre. Maren's 16th birthday seems too good to be true and sure enough, she awakens the morning after a near-perfect celebration with her mother to find an envelope of cash and a note from her mom: "I love you but I can't do this anymore." Ever since Maren literally devoured her babysitter when she was a little girl, her family has been on the run Maren doesn't let people get too close to her, but when they do, they're liable to get eaten. The other thing Maren's mother left her is her birth certificate, which includes the name of the father she's never known. Hopeful that she might find acceptance and answers, Maren embarks on a cross-country journey in search of her dad. Along the way she discovers often under gruesome circumstances that she is not the only one of her kind, but she is, in a very real way, destined to be alone. This story of a young woman who actually consumes anyone attracted to her provides a strange glimpse into a truly profound depth of loneliness. Maren's story also offers readers plenty to chew on: issues of feminism, family, and the very idea of flesh eating. What's more, it's a genuinely entertaining (though occasionally stomach-turning) story of a young ghoul's coming of age. Delicious fun.
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