What Stars Are Made Of
Publisher: Penguin Books
12 year old Libby’s beloved big sister Nonny is pregnant. And Libby is thrilled - but also anxious. Nonny and her husband have money worries, plus the pregnancy isn’t going smoothly. Libby is determined that everything should be perfect for them. Born with a rare condition (Turner Syndrome), she wants no such challenges for this baby. So she makes a deal with the universe to safeguard her family’s happiness, in return for her entering a major STEM competition. If she’s successful, the stars will align to ensure the baby is born safely and the cash prize will offer financial security. Plus Libby can achieve much deserved recognition for an overlooked female astronomer who discovered what stars are made of.
This is a heart-warming book, packed with intensely likeable characters, none less so than Libby, who is enviably selfless and resilient. Supporting her on her journey is an equally kindly cast including devoted sister, witty uncle, quietly proud parents, intuitive teacher and fascinating new friend at school. With the author herself having Turner Syndrome, authenticity shines through the pages. Whilst Libby’s physical differences (like short stature and hearing difficulties) cause her little worry, we see her meticulously learning strategies to fit in at school, something she finds far harder than the injections she gives herself daily without complaint.
This is a touching, inclusive and uplifting story of one girl’s love of her family.