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Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar
Young adult

Star Daughter

Debut

We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Shveta Thakrar, on your first book!

by Shveta Thakrar

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Quick take

Mythology meets astrology as a young star travels between worlds on an epic quest to save her father.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_400

    400+ pages

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FamilyDrama

    Family drama

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Magical

    Magical

  • Illustrated icon, Icons_Quest

    Quest

Synopsis

The daughter of a star and a mortal, Sheetal is used to keeping secrets. But when an accidental flare of her starfire puts her human father in the hospital, Sheetal needs a full star's help to heal him. A star like her mother, who returned to the sky long ago.

Sheetal's quest to save her father will take her to a celestial court of shining wonders and dark shadows, where she must take the stage as her family's champion in a competition to decide the next ruling house of the heavens—and win, or risk never returning to Earth at all.

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Free sample

Get an early look from the first pages of Star Daughter.
Star Daughter

Part One

My mother is a star.

I am half—half of the earth, half of the heavens.

Cut me, and I might bleed silver. My skin is a rich brown, the exact shade of my human father’s skin, but my hair is long and thick and frosted like the moon. In my chest burns a fiery core that beats in time with the music of the spheres, their song deep and layered with dreams.

My mother is a star, one of many bright jewels who sing praises in the skies, who view us from on high. She chose to come down and make a life on Earth, but it wasn’t long before she yearned to go home. Nothing could truly hold her here—not my father’s proposal of marriage, not my birth into the world, not even our nightly dances together in the yard after devouring the dinner my father had cooked, when we’d flee the sink full of dishes to spin and turn, washed in the light of her family above. Our family.

She watches me now from her old throne, one more twinkle in the constellation Pushya, a figure as distant as the characters in the bedtime stories she once loved to tell me. In the evening, I see her clearly, laughing with her companions, radiant. Sometimes I catch rare glimpses of her during the day, when the sky is blue and everything is warm and golden, and it’s almost like having her with me again. Some nights, while the world slumbers, I raise my head to the coal-dark heavens and dream I can even speak to her.

Yet I can’t touch her anymore, can’t go with her to the park, can’t have her take me shopping or hug me or scold me or just be in the same room with me.

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Why I love it

To me, a transportive story makes you study your hands at the end of a read… it makes you wonder if some glitter from that world you left behind has somehow caught on your fingers. Star Daughter is that kind of transportive read. The mythic, South-Asian Otherworld Thakrar constructs is vast, imaginative, and an utter delight for the senses.

The novel tells the story of Sheetal, born of a star mother and a mortal father. She’s spent her life trying to suppress her celestial identity in order to live a “normal” life. But when an accident lands her father in critical condition, Sheetal must embrace her star identity and enter her mother’s world in order to save him.

This is the kind of questing tale that has the familiarity of a well-worn, beloved blanket, told in a voice that is pure poetry. I finished the book feeling almost jet-lagged, my senses so tangled up in the world Thakrar built that reality felt blurry by contrast. At a time when travel is limited, this book is the journey we need—and I hope you too close the book convinced that some stardust souvenirs will fall onto your lap.

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Member ratings (1,086)

  • Courtnie N.

    Kamuela, HI

    The most beautiful idea, played out in a solid story. There were a few moments when I wished for slightly more detail, but overall it was lovely. Sheetal and co. were flawed but grew ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Ananya T.

    San Gabriel, CA

    This book is every South Asian girl’s dream come true! The writing flows, the pacing is perfect, & the story is enchanting. The character building is particularly good! I fell in love with Minal! ❤️

  • Elena T.

    Redding, CA

    I loved reading about deities I’ve never heard of before. A very interesting and fun read with a few little plot twists and an exciting competition where everyone has secrets and information to give.

  • Shreya K.

    Cumming, GA

    It was a sweet story about a young girl attaining womanhood exploring her roots and ancestry. The celestial spin to the story adds so much mystique and shine to the story which was an absolute delight

  • Velvet G.

    Blaine, WA

    A fantasy well worth the work for westernized readers to put the effort into. If you're willing to quickly look up names or creatures you don't recognize, this story will reward you beyond your search

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