Sheetal's mother is a star--and when she left Earth to return to her place in the sky, it changed Sheetal's life forever. Now, ten years later, her presence in Sheetal's life has faded to memories and oddities which make it impossible for her to fit in in modern-day New Jersey. Far more than her ethereal singing voice or the star songs she sometimes hears at night, it's Sheetal's hair that keeps her in a constant struggle to be seen as 'normal'. Sure, black dye can mask the silver, glowing hair Sheetal inherited from her mother, but it never lasts as long as it should--and lately, the silver has been showing through faster and faster than ever before.
Oh, and of course, all the secrets she's keeping don't make anything easier, either.
Sheetal has managed to keep her star side under control for years, but the delicate balance she used to have on her life is beginning to come undone. At first it's just the dye fading from her hair faster than ever before, and the star song becoming more and more insistent--almost as if it's calling her... But when she lashes out at her father and burns him with celestial fire, Sheetal finally has to accept that she can no longer ignore the half-star part of her--and that the only place to find something which will heal her father is the home of the stars themselves.
But the stars have other plans for Sheetal, and no matter how much she finds herself falling in love with their sparkling, shimmering world, she's having more and more trouble reconciling it--and herself--with the Sheetal she used to be. And when the stars ask her to choose between her two worlds, she has to confront the truth about humans and stars--and to ask herself what she's willing to give up.
Star Daughter is a fantasy novel filled with magic, mystery, and starlight helmed by a strong, relatable protagonist. Thakrar's prose is exquisite and engrossing, and carries the story to complex places and relationships with a constantly interesting tale; she manages to capture both how Sheetal speaks and thinks as a modern-day teen and the magic and uniqueness of the setting. I particularly enjoyed the layers of the supporting cast throughout the book, which helped make it a consistently captivating read. The stars' world feels complete and beautifully imagined, and Sheetal's development as she enters it was especially notable to me. I also love the cover! I recommend Star Daughter to readers ages thirteen and up who enjoy fully realized and interesting stories with unique settings and strong characters.