You Read What? Book Reviews: Blind Spot

Author: Laura Ellen

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

  • Imprint: Harcourt Children’s Books

Publishing Date: October 23, 2012

Available Formats: Print and E-book

Number of Pages: 336

Number of Days It Took Me to Read: 3

Source: I received this e-book from Netgalley with the permission of the publisher. I don’t receive anything in return for the reviews. Not even chocolate…

LAURA ELLEN debuts with her Young Adult novel, Blind Spot.

Photo by Vania Stoyanova, VLC Productions

Cover:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is quite the eye catching cover (pun very much intended). It was one of the main reasons for requesting this ARC along with the synopsis itself. I’m not too sure about the tagline though. Corny seems to scream in my head but overall…really good. It’s abstract enough without giving too much of the story away or being too obvious but also relevant.

Synopsis:

Winter stops hiding Tricia Farni on Good Friday

When a truck plunges through the thinning ice of Alaska’s Birch River, Tricia’s body floats to the surface– dead since the night she disappeared six months earlier.

The night Roswell Hart fought with her.

The night Roz can’t remember.

Missing things is nothing new to sixteen-year-old Roz. She has macular degeneration, an eye disease that robs her central vision. She’s constantly piecing together what she sees– or thinks she sees–but this time her memory needs piecing together. How can Roz be sure of the truth if her own memory has betrayed her? Can she clear her name of a murder that she believes she didn’t commit?

Plot/Storyline:

Boy, was this a good read. I thought that this would primarily be a murder/mystery book but it was so much more than that. It’s a story that’s essentially about disability and the stigma that’s attached to it. The murder was just the platform to voice the difficulties of those with disabilities face in a very pro-able bodied society and I felt Ellen did just that. The story begins with the time leading up Tricia disappears, during the time she was missing and the aftermath which allows readers to see these characters at different points in time, painting a more richer picture of them.

Writing:

The pacing was great. I got sucked in despite the fact that the investigation and disappearance of Tricia didn’t occur until much later. The drama existed long before that, though, with Roz’s struggles with friends, family and school – all of which had me screaming various things at my computer screen (a swear word here and there…a gasp as well along with the occasional cringing). The writing was exactly the most poetic thing I’ve read but it got the job done in telling this story and was good for a young adult novel.

Characters:

         Roswell (Roz) is legally blind and when you first hear that, it’s like you automatically know how you’ll feel about this character or what they’ll be like. I thought Roz would be shy and kind. I was wrong. Roz is headstrong, smart, and doesn’t take crap from anyone. She’s also defensive, self centered at times and blind in terms of differentiating between the people who care about her and those using her. I was annoyed, frustrated and angry with her a lot but I felt pity too (and anger for her). I hated that people boxed her into a corner because she’s been labeled “disabled”. Her mother is just…terrible. I promise that by mid-way through the book (or earlier) it’ll sneak up on you on how much you care about her regardless of her flaws.

         Mr. Dellian got most of my wrath (along with Jonathan) because of how used the label of disability as a weapon against some of the characters (but mostly Roz) and it made my skin crawl to think of people in real life that could and probably have done that.

I love Greg. He’s just adorable but he had moments that had him come across as a jerk.

        Tricia is someone I can respect. She may appear much more damaged than the other characters but she sees a lot more than she’s given credit for.

Memorable/Forgettable?: Memorable. I’m still reeling from the emotional tail spin that’s been inflicted on me. I was put into the mind of a character that I normally wouldn’t relate to and felt what she did to the point where the residual effects still linger…

Rating: I give this 5 capes out of 5.

A. A. Omer

The opinions expressed here are mine and readers are welcome to disagree. In fact, I encourage it! I never believed in putting particular books or authors on some sort of universal pedestal but you’re free to put it on your individualized pedestal because I most certainly will.

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