Hole in the Middle

This clever novel is an allegory about embracing your difference and just being yourself.

Morgan Stone is a regular teenager who lives with her best friend, her mother just happens to be a world famous fitness guru whose success is built on the idea of bodily perfection. Morgan has an unusual secret, though: a perfect hole in the middle of her body. She has spent the last seventeen years hiding her difference from everyone except her family and her closest friend. One night she discovers a dark and dingy club and finds a sense of freedom in the pulsing music there and in the next few visits feels inspired to reveal who she really is. But a camera phone image of her hole makes her Internet famous just as a new doctor appears along with a boy who is her exact opposite and who seems to promise a cure.

Fortmeyer manages to weave many important themes into this engaging tale. Ideas of bodily autonomy and individuality in a world obsessed with narrow ideas of beauty and perfection sit alongside themes of the Internet as source of support but also derision and the power of the arts and creativity for self-expression. There is even a love story thrown into the mix and a quest of sorts to find a legendary angel. This is a thought-provoking and thoroughly entertaining read.