Summary from Goodreads:
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…
INTERVIEW WITH CAROL: Weight and Body Image
1. Why do you think readers will like your book?
I think readers will enjoy THE BODY INSTITUTE because it includes the issues of appearance and body image, related to a person’s weight. People often make assumptions and snap judgments based on what other people look like, and they can also be cruel and bullying. These reactions can shape someone’s personality and sense of identity. We’ve all seen this played out, whether from personal experience or someone we know. Today, weight is a really controversial and heated topic. For instance, are some models too thin—and are others too “fat”? What message are we sending our teens when Hollywood and the modeling industry portray beauty as only belonging to slim figures?
2. Where did you get the idea for THE BODY INSTITUTE?
The germ seed for this novel happened as I found myself wondering, “If I were in someone else’s body, would I do the same things that person does?” And more specifically, “If I were in a body of someone who was overweight, could I lose weight FOR
them?” I started thinking about how much appearance affects our personality. At first I thought my mind and personality would stay the same regardless of whatever body I was in. Sure, I could lose weight for that person, easy-peasy. But upon further thought…maybe my personality and beliefs would begin to morph once I was in that person’s shoes, while experiencing all the things that affect her daily life:situations, friends, family, strangers, societal pressures. Above all, my new and heavier appearance. I was fascinated by this scenario.
I’m a YA writer represented by Kelly Sonnack of Andrea Brown Literary. My sci-fi novel THE BODY INSTITUTE explores the themes of society, identity, and body image. I live in the beautiful, green state of Oregon and have a Studio Arts degree; I’m an SCBWI member. You’ll usually find me in my writing cave, surrounded by my dragon collection and the characters in my head. I also enjoy reading–mostly young adult novels–as well as drawing, painting, and quilting. I also attend writing conferences, walk with my husband, and enjoy music and dance of all kinds.