What Girls Are Made Of

A 2017 National Book Award for Young People's Literature Finalist When Nina Faye was fourteen, her mother told her there was no such thing as unconditional love. Nina believed her. Now she'll Read More →

  • Lexile: 900
  • ATOS: 5.8
  • Dewey: [Fic]
  • Copyright: 2017


“[H]arsh and beautiful, distant and immediate, furious and anguished.”—Leila Roy, Kirkus Reviews Blog View →


“Pair this with McGinnis’ The Female of the Species for a nuanced look at the complications of girlhood.”—The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books View →


“[D]escribes all things ‘girl’ in the brutally honest way. . . . Teen girls should read this book, even if it is not easy.”—VOYA View →


“Smart, true, and devastating, this is brutally, necessarily forthcoming about the crags of teen courtship.”—Booklist View →


“Arnold interweaves myriad landscapes . . . into a narrative wholeness that is greater than its parts. Unflinchingly candid, unapologetically girl, and devastatingly vital.”—starred, Kirkus Reviews View →


“The author presents a hopeful conclusion as Nina learns that self-love and fulfillment can be found through helping others. Because of its complex symbolism and graphic imagery, this well-written novel is best suited to mature YA readers.”—School Library Journal View →


“Stunning in its honesty and depth, What Girls Are Made Of unapologetically examines the strength, determination, and vulnerability of girls. This book is for anyone who is a girl, was a girl, or wishes to glimpse the interwoven beauty and pain that comes with being a… View →


“Finally, finally, a book that is fully girl, with all of the gore and grace of growing up female exposed. Arnold’s gorgeous prose takes us to all sorts of places to show us what girls are made of: a high-kill animal shelter, an abortion clinic, a bridge to nowhere that… View →


“Beautifully written and evocative, What Girls Are Made Of fearlessly examines the courage and struggle of being a teenage girl in the modern world. With a deft hand, Elana K. Arnold opens up a conversation about how girls survive as a whole when they are too often… View →


“We think we know what girls are made of. But not always. And Elana K. Arnold removes the veil—which is as gory as often as it is gauzy. What Girls Are Made Of shows the true, beautiful, and confounding complexity of women. This one will rip your heart out.”— Martha… View →