Well, I am still not entirely sure if I can write a review, but I will do my best! This book sure was a rollercoaster of awesomeness!
Edit after reviewing: Well apparently I was able to write a review. 😛 This is one of my longest reviews!
Let me first get two not so good things out of the way. Yes, I just have 2 little things that I didn’t particularly like, still the book was too good in overall to not give it a 5+ stars.
So here we go.
Number 1 on my list of not so good things:
Will’s mom. I can imagine why she did all she did, and she did some sweet things too. But her mothering and helicopter momming was just plain annoying. The way she made decisions (important ones) for him was just terrible. The whole operation part? I was just pissed at her for doing that stuff. How can you. Your son is not 3 any more, he is 16, he can, and must make this decision on his own. You can’t say yes to stuff, you can’t just make appointments. That is terrible. I can imagine you want to help him, but this is not going to help anyone. It will only make your son run away as soon as he is able to do that. And I don’t think you want that.
Plus who the hell buys a Tesla when their kid is blind and relies on the sound of the car?
Number 2 on my list of not so good things will be spoiler tagged.
The whole dramaramarama surrounding Cecily’s birthmark, which she didn’t tell Will about. And for fucking good reasons. The poor girl is getting bullied all her life. She has a not quite nice nickname. She isn’t that big on trust (no shit). She was so happy that you didn’t see it. That you could finally see, or actually take her, as she was. Not immediately judge her as so many do. And yes, I do kind of agree that it might not have been the best decision, but really? She already told you she kind of regrets it. She said she was sorry. But again, I also can see why she has done it. I would have done the same, I might not have a birthmark, but I have other things, and if I come along someone who doesn’t see those? I would hide them too. Even though I might feel bad at times. I would just be too worried, too scared that what we have now will be broken, like so many other things, because of this.
Also really his drama? It was like I was seeing a 4 year old spoiled rotten brat. Oh boohooohoohooohoo she didn’t tell me. My life sucks. Everyone is mean. Trust is for pussies. I don’t want anything anymore. Throws away all her stuff (the pictures she made with love for him so he could see them when he had the operation and he could see again, he even smears fucking mayonnaise over them) deletes her info, defriends her. Then goes in some kind of depresses fuck mode for weeks. *sighs and rolls eyes* That is so mature. And see, this is another reason for her to just not say a fucking word about it.
Phew, that was a relief to throw that number 2 out. That was definitely demanding a lot of attention. Then again it was my least favourite part in the book. Such a shame that it was added.
But but but but but the rest of the book, and the overall book feel, was just amazing, and I loved loved loved it so much! You can definitely tell Josh Sundquist did a lot of research about being blind, how it is for them, how the operation works, and how it will end. I am not blind myself, but I have read some literature stuff/saw documentaries about it, and the writer definitely captured the right feeling. It was all just really realistic.
I also liked how he was able to tell us, through Will, how blindness works, and some of the things that Will didn’t like that people did are things that I have heard other blind people say was a point of blehness to them as well. People who just grab them out of the blue and drag them to places while they aren’t going there. Or people who assume that just because your blind you can’t do anything.
Will was an amazing character (well with the exception of that little tantrum). He was sweet, responsible, a good guy. It was quite interesting to see him traverse through life, see how he experienced several things, from people who just were a bit too eager to help him while didn’t need help, to people who didn’t understand. How he walked the world while being blind. How he found his way through his home, school, or other places. It was also quite interesting to see him on a tandem with one of his parents. Them telling when there was a turn. It was quite amazing as well that he knew exactly where they were, just by calculating various variables.
I loved how fast he found a good group of people who didn’t mind him being blind, who included him in most of the events (some stuff was just too hard after all).
I could imagine his frustration with his mother. He just wants some time to think, he just wants to make his own decisions. He is blind, not stupid.
I did love him and his dad together, sure it was at times awkward, but his dad really meant well and also was pretty helpful.
I want to wish him luck on his New Year’s Resolution he made during the end of the book. I am sure that he can do it. Maybe with some help of Cecily and some others, but I can see him do that at the end of the year.
His friendship (and as we all can guess from the blurb so this is not a spoiler, much more) with Cecily was a delight to read. They didn’t start off quite well, but after that it was quick friendship and she was there for him when he needed someone. She helped him out, she partnered with him, she talked to him. I just loved them together, and wished them all the best. I loved how it first was just friendship, some awkward moments, but then went to something much more. Yes, Will didn’t want a relationship, but you can’t stop love. It can happen at any moment. I was happy for both of them.
Cecily was a sweet girl, and when you know what is up, things connect to her behaviour at the beginning. I loved how she was with Will, and how she took care not to fall in the standard behaviour that people often do when they see a blind person. Instead she took her time, patience, and tried to explain stuff to him as simple as she could (even then it wasn’t always the right explanation, but at least she tried). I felt so sorry for her for what she had to go through in her life. No one deserves that. 🙁 I was really crying at the end and what she said there. hugs Cecily
The operation was definitely quite scary, and I was just hoping, praying that everything would go right, of course, by the blurb, we know this is going to happen, but I still was hoping. You never know, I have seen enough blurbs that lie. 😛
And then after the operation, the worry, the stress. Would he be able to see? And how will he learn about the world that is now visible to him. And also will he be able to keep his vision, or will the donor material reject him as is also a chance.
I have to say I laughed so hard when he was learning shapes and colours. Especially the triangle was hilarious. How things, like triangles, just seemingly disappeared for him when it was turned around or flipped over. How later on he still didn’t get the whole depth, perspective, and several other things, which was cause for some trouble, but, it was also quite magical to see him be so amazed by all the little things, and all the wonders. How he was so amazed by even the simplest thing, then again I can imagine that, he has never seen anything, but it was still very sweet and amazing to read about it. His observations made me laugh. Nah, it is no magic. Definitely not, though it is pretty magical how it all works so finely.
The ending was real cute, a bit cliché, but oh well. It was cute, and it was nice, and I was happy with what happened there. The mom definitely made a good redemption part there, though I would have loved to see the dad’s reaction to it all.
I think I now have everything, oh wait, I have to give extra points to Dr. Bianchi. He was a great guy and I loved his enthusiasm for what he did. How he actually listened to his patients, how he actually tried to help out, and how he was honest with the facts. I wish everyone could have a doctor like this guy.
All in all a book that will make you laugh, cheer, cry, worry, hope, and much much more. You will step into a rollercoaster of a book that will take you up and down, all around, loopdaloop, and won’t let you go until it is the end of the book. I loved this book, and I will definitely re-read it again someday.
I would also highly recommend this book to everyone. Be sure to read this one! It is a wonderful book with great characters.