Book Review–Blindsided by Priscilla Cummings

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This is the 4th book from my 114 in 2014 Reading Challenge.

Picture Source: Goodreads.com
Picture Source: Goodreads.com

Blindsided by Priscilla Cummings
Published July 8th, 2010 by Dutton Juvenile

 

In many ways, Natalie O’Reilly is a typical fourteen-year-old girl. But a routine visit to the eye doctor produces devastating news: Natalie will lose her sight within a few short months.

Suddenly her world is turned upside down. Natalie is sent to a school for the blind to learn skills such as Braille and how to use a cane. Outwardly, she does as she’s told; inwardly, she hopes for a miracle that will free her from a dreaded life of blindness.

But the miracle does not come, and Natalie ultimately must confront every blind person’s dilemma. Will she go home to live scared? Or will she embrace the skills she needs to make it in a world without sight?

 

——

I’ve been wanting to read this one for a while because it features a very different POV–that of a young girl who gradually loses her eyesight. It seems like there aren’t very many books which focus on characters who are blind so I knew I had to read it.

At first, I thought it was just going to be an “okay” book. The writing wasn’t anything special and in third person (which is fine, but I was hoping it would be in first). I wasn’t sure if I would be able to connect to the main character, Natalie, but once her eyesight started to get worse, I slowly found myself being drawn to her.

For most of the book, Natalie is ashamed and afraid of the day when she becomes fully blind. A lot of people seem to be annoyed with this, but honestly I can see her view. I am a very visual person so if I was told I was going to lose my eyesight, I’m not sure I would be the strongest person ever about it, either. I felt bad for her because I knew just how much I would miss being able to see. I do like that she finds some courage in the book, but I honestly like that her fear is addressed because I believe a lot of people would be afraid in the same situation.

The side characters were also pretty good. I got quickly attached to Bree, which of course was a mistake. But I also liked Natalie’s potential love interest at her new school for the blind and the assorted students there. I wasn’t the biggest fan of Natalie’s best friend, but she turned out to be okay in the end and their friendship was a realistic view of what happens when friends begin to drift apart.

I liked how Natalie’s parents were portrayed in the book, especially Natalie’s mother. There is one scene in the creamery that is probably my favorite scene between the two of them.

This isn’t a happy book. It’s more bittersweet. There’s happy moments and then there’s some pretty sad ones, too. It’s a realistic book, though, and gives a great portrayal in how someone might feel to lose their eyesight and how they would have to change every aspect of their life once it happened. I ended up really liking this one–probably 3.5 stars.

I’ll definitely be checking more books by this author.

 

3halfstars

jncname

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