Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Hey Ya'll; Happy Thanksgiving to all my US friends - and anyone else who celebrates this holiday. Turkey Day is one of my favorites because all you have to do is cook, eat and spend time with family and/or friends. Who doesn't love a good meal!?!

Speaking of meals, and overeating, and getting fat and lazy - at least for one or two days - I found your perfect after Turkey read. Or, before the meal, if you don't have to cook or travel and need something to take your mind off all the delicious smells.

Perhaps THE BODY INSTITUTE (Entangled Teen) will even help you to not overeat due to reading about the health care issues and bullying surrounding obesity, even those who carry just a tad of extra poundage. Of course, you could go the other way; feeding your literary appetite while stuffing your gut and then napping with the dream of a Reducer melting off all that excess poundage. Now that's my kind of weight loss program!

I wasn't sure I'd like this YA novel, but I was intrigued by the premise, and the one line on the cover that asks the question "are we our minds . . . or our bodies?" I attended a book signing at a local bookstore, and after hearing author Carol Riggs discuss the book, the plot concept and issues explored, I had a few questions. The author wasn't sure if it was Dystopian, but did assure me it was not the typical angsty YA voice. I liked what she read, and that intriguing question, and decided to take the chance and purchase a paper copy.

To my mind, this is definitely not dystopian, and does not take place in a school. The world is set approx 50 years in the future, but that future is not a set date, as the technology, environmental, and social issues addressed could plausibly happen any time between next year or more than a hundred years. I liked how the author moved today's current issues along to a logical conclusion, complete with all the expected benefits and drawbacks. I could see myself living in this speculative future and completely related to the concerns and stubbornness of the Grandfather.

The age of the protagonist - nearly 18 year old Morgan who is an over achieving science geek with loyal friends and a wholesome, patriotic attitude - works well for the future focus, as even today young people and their industriousness is what the older (not elderly) generation depends on to keep the world moving forward. Each generation of characters was well developed, easily relatable regardless of the age of the reader.

Without giving spoilers, I'll just say the villain in this novel is Big Business and Government, focusing down to one person of course; and includes the question of how much control each should have over our individual choices/rights. I like a book that opens my mind to different opinions, and makes me want to research/learn about technologies and philosophies.

I would recommend THE BODY INSTITUTE to anyone who enjoys a well paced mystery, an exploration of social issues in the near future, excellently developed and believable characters, and a wholesome concept that promotes family values.

As I said, this book is good food for thought, and if you would prefer exercising your mind as opposed to your body after an excellent meal, pick up this book and your favorite beverage and snuggle in for a cozy read.

Purchase links:
Amazon   B&N   Kobo   Indie Bound   Powell's Books   Books a Million

Meet Morgan Dey, one of the top teen Reducers at The Body Institute.

Thanks to cutting-edge technology, Morgan can temporarily take over another girl’s body, get her in shape, and then return to her own body—leaving her client slimmer, more toned, and feeling great. Only there are a few catches…

For one, Morgan won’t remember what happens in her “Loaner” body. Once she’s done, she won’t recall walks with her new friend Matt, conversations with the super-cute Reducer she’s been text-flirting with, or the uneasy feeling she has that the director of The Body Institute is hiding something. Still, it’s all worth it in the name of science. Until the glitches start…

Suddenly, residual memories from her Loaner are cropping up in Morgan’s mind. She’s feeling less like herself and more like someone else. And when protests from an anti–Body Institute organization threaten her safety, she’ll have to decide if being a Reducer is worth the cost of her body and soul…

Are we our minds...or our bodies?

Carol Riggs lives in the beautiful green state of Oregon, USA. She enjoys reading, drawing and painting, writing conferences, walking with her husband, and enjoying music and dance of all kinds. You will usually find her in her writing cave, surrounded by her dragon collection and the characters in her head.

Contact Carol on her website, blog, twitter, Face Book, Good Reads,


Mark Koopmans said...

Wow that book seems like a really good read.... love the concept!!

Congrats to Carol :)

... I see you stopping by my blog:) And, happy Thanksgiving to you too, Donna:)

Carol Riggs said...

Aw, thanks, Donna! You are a sweetie to review my book and do a post. :) HAPPY Thanksgiving to you!!!

Dixie@dcrelief said...

Heavy duty subject matter. Ironically my latest video watching deals with possible scenarios akin to this. Sounds like a good read.

Congratulations, Carol. Hope your Thanksgiving is fun and safe.

Donna, make sure you have fun; I wanna hear about it later.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Donna - and Carol - what a great book to read over Thanksgiving .. or afterwards ... I agree with Mark - the concept sounds fascinating and interesting to think about ... good luck with it - Happy Thanksgiving to you both .. cheers Hilary

DEZMOND said...

It is even better if it's not dystopia, because there's just too much of it these days.... I've translated like ten dystopian novels this year.

Pat Hatt said...

A book that makes you think is always a win indeed.

Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! said...

Hi humans, Donna and Carol,

A most poignant message within the book. Hearty congrats to Carol and her book of timely impawtance.

Have a very nice American version of Thanksgiving.

Pawsitive wishes and doggy kisses,

Penny xx

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great read, and has a lovely message-- thanks for sharing this, Donna!

Christine Rains said...

Sounds like a great read! Thanks for the review. :)

Yolanda Renee said...

Congratulations Carol!
Unique premise and timely!
Great review, Donna!

Denise Covey said...

Hey Donna! Turkey Day. I like that. At least we only have one day of the year when we gluttonise...Christmas Day. Too hot for turkey. Seafood is the go and not so much poundage putting on, lol!

I like the sound of Carol's book. So much YA is dystopian these days, but not all. Carol's premise sounds intriguing!

Denise :-)

Misha Gericke said...

This book has been on my TBR list for a while now. :-)

J.L. Campbell said...

Yes, the book premise definitely sounds intriguing and I like mysteries as well.

Congrats to Carol!