Publisher's Note:  

The language of the stars is the language of the body. Like a star, the anorexic burns fuel that isn't replenished; she is held together by her own gravity.

With luminous, lyrical prose, Binary Star is an impassioned account of a young woman struggling with anorexia and her long-distance, alcoholic boyfriend. On a road trip circumnavigating the United States, they stumble into a book on veganarchism, and believe they've found a direction.

Binary Star is an intense, fast-moving saga of two young lovers and the culture that keeps them sick (or at least inundated with quick-fix solutions); a society that sells diet pills, sleeping pills, magazines that profile celebrities who lose weight or too much weight or put on weight, and books that pimp diet secrets or recipes for success.

Binary Star

by Sarah Gerard

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Overall Review:  

Days after I have finished reading it, this book is still at the forefront of my mind, which is not typical for me. I am a voracious reader and sometimes feel as if I have to put each book I have finished into a category in my mind:  those I really liked and those I didn't like. This book falls into the former, but I am still struggling with the ending--no, actually I am still struggling with the entire novel. This book is a slight one, coming in at just under 200 pages. I read it in one sitting, but I may have to read it again to really let the whole story sink in.


This book was both wonderful and painful to read. When I first began reading, I didn't realize it was a novel, so I was reading it and thinking it was a first-hand account of Sarah Gerard herself. Though not autobiographical, this book is a sort of fictionalized account of a part of Ms. Gerard's life. There were parts I could really relate to, and I loved how lyrical and beautiful the author made self-harm sound, without putting it in any sort of positive light. She made it easy to understand how logical it can seem to a mentally ill person to hurt themselves in an attempt to relieve pain. This book won't be for everyone, but it is a wonderful quick read that made me think and really ponder a lot of things I have subjected myself to. If you want to understand an addictive relationship between two people, an addiction to food (or lack thereof), or an addiction of any kind really, Binary Star offers some smart insight.

Content Analysis:  

Profanity/Language:  1 religious exclamation; 1 mild obscenity; 3 derogatory names; 5 scatological words; 5 anatomical terms; 28 F-Word derivatives.


Violence/Gore:  A character hits another character in a fist fight; self-harm methods are referred to.


Sex/Nudity:  Adults kiss several times; sex is referred to; two adults are said to make love in a brief scene, no description is given; two adults visit a strip club, a woman is mentioned to be dancing in a sexually suggestive way and nude body parts are mentioned; a man and a woman have sex in one brief scene with no explicit detail.

Mature Subject Matter:  

Self-harm, addictions, mental disorders.

Alcohol / Drug Use:  

Adults drink; an adult man is an alcoholic and drinks excessively; prescription drug abuse is mentioned several times.

Reviewed By Lydia
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