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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
Taking My Half out of the Middle is a work of fiction that hybridizes political essays and travel genres. It is aimed at all ages and was penned by author Ouen Owen. The book tells the tale of a road trip between two brothers of different political leanings, with a centrist point of view character and his ultra-liberal brother on a journey to visit their elderly mother at her commune. As the centrist Jack writes a series of essays to defend his centrist political positions, the journey causes him to undergo a voyage of self-discovery when he reflects on the values he holds dear. What results is an emotive and thought-provoking read.
Author Ouen Owen has created a truly engaging piece which is unique in its presentation and combination of fictional storylines with modern political thinking. I enjoyed the essays under their own merit, particularly in view of the current struggles we are enduring as a planet, and then when you layer the tale of Jack, Donny and their family life over the top, it contextualizes where these ideas truly come from within us and makes them ever more relatable. Owen also writes with a smooth narration and a shift in style which keeps the essay clean and crisp but also marries the wordplay and atmosphere well with the storytelling voice. It is apparent that the work is achieved by a keen political thinker and a talented writer, and overall I would certainly recommend Taking My Half out of the Middle to all readers seeking a new perspective to explore.