The Body Institute, a young adult novel by Carol Riggs, is a compelling read with an intriguing premise. It grapples with body image and scientific technology gone awry. What if you could swap bodies? What if you could pay someone to enter your body and lose weight for you? Would you do it? Do our bodies affect who we are inside? Does our consciousness change with changes in our physical appearance?
Carol Riggs explores all of this with her engaging characters and fast paced plot. The book shines a light on fat shaming in a way that seems eerily close to the truth in our world today.
Morgan is a teen girl who needs money to keep her family out of the slums. Although she is brilliant, her application for a school grant is suspiciously denied. She discovers she will get the grant if she becomes a REDUCER and allows her brain to be uploaded into the body of a girl who is 100 pounds overweight. Morgan must lose the weight before she can be returned to her own body. She imagines the job will be fairly easy and without lasting consequences, but when her thoughts are invaded by those of the girl she’s inhabiting, will her views change? She begins to consider: “Are we our minds…or our bodies?”
This book is well worth the read for anyone who enjoys sci-fi or simply enjoys a good read!
What are you reading this summer?