Kendra Fortmeyer is an author to look out for.

The cover of

The cover of "Hole in the Middle" by Kendra Fortmeyer, set to release in September 2018. Source//Goodread

Lizzie deBrabander, Op/Ed Editor

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As someone who works at a bookstore, I receive a lot of perks, one of which is having access to advanced readers copies of books that haven’t yet been released. As I was looking through this months box, one book in particular caught my eye: Hole in the Middle by Kendra Fortmeyer. As I began reading it, I immediately fell in love with the writing. When I showed my mom the find, she excitedly told me that she knew the author! My mom was in an online writers group with Fortmeyer’s mother! This only made me more excited to dive into the story.
Fortmeyer has won the Pushcart Prize for her fiction writing, has been recognized by grants, and has previously had her short stories published.
“Hole in the Middle” follows Morgan, a girl who was born with a fist-sized hole straight through her stomach. When she finally decides to flaunt her body and this “flaw” she is quickly met with media attention, adoring fans, and cruel haters. Not to mention that a doctor seems to have found her perfect medical match in a boy named Howie.
This book is definitely not my typical genre, as I prefer contemporary and mystery to science fiction. However, this book still tackles very relatable issues, even with the scientific aspect. Morgan suffers with body image issues, distant parents, and relationship woes, just like many “normal teenagers” do.
The most enjoyable part of this book, though, is the writing itself. Fortmeyer manages to write poetic and thought provoking sentences that somehow don’t come off as pretentious. The plot still comes through the beautiful sentence structure, which I don’t see often in young adult literature.
Even with the stellar writing, unique plot, and approachable characters, the story fell a little flat for me. I couldn’t quite get myself to care about what happened to the characters. There were good moments, like Morgan’s friendships with Howie and her other friend Caroline. Yet, I didn’t find myself rooting for the characters throughout the story, I was more just waiting for the book to either get better or end.
Kendra Fortmeyer’s exquisite writing definitely makes her an author to look out for, I just don’t think that this debut novel truly shows all that she is capable of.
“Hole in the Middle” is set to release on September 4, 2018.

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