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Ekstrom Library

Reading & Resource Series: Her Body and Other Parties: Home

In Spring 2024, University Libraries invites students, faculty and staff to read and discuss this work by Carmen Maria Machado.

The reading and resource series is sponsored by the Library Student Advisory Board (LSAB). In Fall 2023, University Libraries requested book selections from the University of Louisville community. Over 25 suggestions were submitted. The LSAB voted on the selection. 

To learn more about the LSAB, and join, visit its webpage.

Book jacket for Her Body and Other Parties

Finalist for the National Book Award for Fiction

"[These stories] vibrate with originality, queerness, sensuality and the strange."--Roxane Gay

"In these formally brilliant and emotionally charged tales, Machado gives literal shape to women's memories and hunger and desire. I couldn't put it down."--Karen Russell

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 naïvely assumed had shown it all, generating a phantasmagoric police procedural full of doppelgängers, 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.

Series Calendar


Hyperlinked flier for Reading and Resource Series February program


Hyperlinked flier for Reading and Resource Series March program


Hyperlinked flier for Reading and Resource Series April program