STARRED REVIEW
January 2017

Adjusting to a new life

By Josh Sundquist

Will Porter is blind and has been since birth. At 16, he’s making his first foray into a mainstream school, but using what he learned at the school for the blind doesn’t stop him from making mistakes, including almost sitting on someone in the cafeteria.

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Will Porter is blind and has been since birth. At 16, he’s making his first foray into a mainstream school, but using what he learned at the school for the blind doesn’t stop him from making mistakes, including almost sitting on someone in the cafeteria. That someone is Nick, who—along with academic quiz team members Ion and Whitford—quickly befriends Will. Will also meets Cecily, the fourth member of the academic quiz team, in his journalism class. Will is drawn to Cecily, but there’s something about her appearance that Will’s friends aren’t telling him, and it will come to the surface when he undergoes experimental surgery that allows him to see for the first time.

But before Will learns of this secret, he must acclimate to life as a sighted person. Debut novelist (and Paralympian) Josh Sundquist illuminates this surprising and frustrating process with profound insight: It’s like learning a language when you don’t know what language is. When Will first awakes from the surgery, his eyes are bandaged shut, but he immediately senses a difference in the darkness. To Will, this new darkness is a sound, a thundering noise in his brain that he wishes would go away. Upon first opening his eyes, his brain is flooded with so much visual stimuli that he becomes dizzy and sick.

Best suited for older teens, Love and First Sight will leave readers questioning the definition of beauty and thankful for the gift of eyesight.

 

This article was originally published in the January 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

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Love and First Sight

Love and First Sight

By Josh Sundquist
Little, Brown
ISBN 9780316305358

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