Sheila J. Sadr’s poetry is only the most visible manifestation of her creative drive. As an educator and therapist-in-training, she is deeply grounded in her local community and the poetry world of Southern California. That same restorative energy animates her debut collection Birthday Girl, winner of the 2018 Stories Award for Poetry. In this healing probe into femininity, Sheila Sadr questions and reinvents gender expectations as skillfully as poetic forms. This book is for anyone engaged in the strange survival of themselves and others, and it’s also a beautiful addition to a new tradition of Iranian-American poetry alongside writers like Kaveh Akbar, Anis Mojgani, and Solmaz Sharif. It’s a joy to bring Sheila Sadr’s poems to a larger audience, but given her determination, we know that this book would exist if she had to pulp the paper herself.