Publication Date: 30/03/2023 ISBN: 9781529069389 Category:

Maps of Our Spectacular Bodies

Maddie Mortimer

Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Publication Date: 30/03/2023 ISBN: 9781529069389 Category:
Paperback / Softback


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Winner of the Desmond Elliott Prize
Shortlisted: Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year – Goldsmiths Prize – Betty Trask Prize
Longlisted: Booker Prize – Dylan Thomas Prize

Maps of Our Spectacular Bodies is a story of coming-of-age at the end of a life. Utterly heart-breaking yet darkly funny, Maddie Mortimer’s debut is a symphonic journey through one woman’s body: a celebration of desire, forgiveness, and the darkness within us all.

‘Original, memorable, shimmering’ – Sarah Moss, author of Ghost Wall

Lia has only one child, Iris; her magical, awkward, endlessly creative daughter who has just entered the battleground of her teenage years. Lia and Iris have always been close, but there is a war playing out inside Lia’s body, too, and everything is about to change.

As she confronts what might be the end, memories of her own childhood and a passionate love affair come rushing into her present, unearthing buried secrets and her family’s deepest fears. But Lia still has hope . . . for more time, for more love, for more Iris.

The Sunday Times Book of the Year
‘Restlessly inventive . . . delicate and persuasive’ – The Guardian
‘Extraordinary, kaleidoscopic’ – Daisy Johnson, author of Everything, Under

Publisher Review

Remarkable . . . A tearjerker, but it's hopeful too . . . Brave, inventive and mature * Sunday Times * Here is a book to dance and sing about. An extraordinary, kaleidoscopic dive into language -- Daisy Johnson, Man Booker-shortlisted author of Everything, Under Compelling and uplifting . . . undeniably impressive: Mortimer is clearly a talent to watch * Telegraph * An original and memorable novel written in shimmering prose. The characters stayed with me long after I'd finished reading -- Sarah Moss, Women's Prize-shortlisted author of Ghost Wall and Summerwater Lyrical and beautiful, this is a novel unlike anything else * Stylist * Both expansive and intimate, Maps of Our Spectacular Bodies is an intricate portrait of a life hurtling towards the inevitable. An extraordinary debut. -- Kiran Millwood Hargrave, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Mercies Striking . . . formally inventive . . . Sadness is not allowed to crowd out wit and joy * New Yorker * A beautiful novel about death that feels completely alive, pulsing with tenderness and wit -- Megan Hunter, author of The End We Start From and The Harpy An extraordinary debut, unlike anything I've read. Wildly inventive, poetic and poignant, this is a rare gem of a novel that took my imagination to new places and touched my heart. -- Emma Stonex, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Lamplighters Technically dazzling . . . Mortimer has the same felicity with language as Jon McGregor, combining an incantatory prose style with imagery so acute it almost burns * Daily Mail * Ambitious, sprawling . . . brings to mind Eimear McBride's A Girl Is a Half-Formed Thing . . . restlessly inventive . . . delicate and persuasive . . . sharply funny * Guardian * It may move between different styles and moods, but underpinning it all is the book's bursting energy and, in the face of death, its verve for life * i newspaper * This is a touching, eye-opening perspective on life and illness like you've never read before * Good Housekeeping * Using word placement, font, and shape to create images on the page, Mortimer deepens the reader's engagement with the story and characters . . . Through breathtaking attention to detail, Mortimer crafts a stunning novel that touches on the expanses one life can contain * Booklist (starred) * Maddie Mortimer's dazzling debut novel about a woman with breast cancer is a life-affirming read - all the more so because of its proximity to death . . . While there are many books that explore these themes, it is rare to find one that does so in such an immersive and harrowing way * Straits Times *

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