Carmen Maria Machado

CARMEN MARIA MACHADO’s debut book, Her Body and Other Parties, is a finalist for the National Book Award and the Kirkus Prize. Her fiction and nonfiction has appeared in The New YorkerGranta, NPR, GuernicaElectric LiteratureGulf CoastBest American Science Fiction & FantasyBest Horror of the YearYear’s Best Weird Fiction, and Best Women’s Erotica, and her short stories have been nominated for the Shirley Jackson and Nebula Awards, awarded a Pushcart Prize Special Mention, and longlisted for the Tiptree Award. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and has been awarded fellowships and residencies from the Michener-Copernicus Foundation, the Elizabeth George Foundation, the CINTAS Foundation, the Yaddo Corporation, and elsewhere. She is the Artist in Residence at the University of Pennsylvania, and lives in Philadelphia with her wife.


HER BODY AND OTHER PARTIES

A highly anticipated debut by “one of the most ferociously gifted young writers working today” (Michelle Huneven)

In Her Body and Other Parties, Carmen Maria Machado blithely demolishes the arbitrary borders between psychological realism and science fiction, comedy and horror, fantasy and fabulism. While her work has earned her comparisons to Karen Russell and Kelly Link, she has a voice that is all her own. In this electric and provocative debut, Machado bends genre to shape startling narratives that map the realities of women’s lives and the violence visited upon their bodies.

A wife refuses her husband’s entreaties to remove the green ribbon from around her neck. A woman recounts her sexual encounters as a plague slowly consumes humanity. A salesclerk in a mall makes a horrifying discovery within the seams of the store’s prom dresses. One woman’s surgery-induced weight loss results in an unwanted houseguest. And in the bravura novella “Especially Heinous,” Machado reimagines every episode of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, a show we naively assumed had shown it all, generating a phantasmagoric police procedural full of doppelgangers, ghosts, and girls with bells for eyes.

Earthy and otherworldly, antic and sexy, queer and caustic, comic and deadly serious, Her Body and Other Parties swings from horrific violence to the most exquisite sentiment. In their explosive originality, these stories enlarge the possibilities of contemporary fiction.

Rachel