I received this book for free (hey, thanks!) in exchange for an honest review. I promise that this does NOT affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. For real.The One Thing on September 8th 2015
Format: ARC (336 pages) • Goodreads • Amazon • Barnes & Noble
Maggie Sanders might be blind, but she won't invite anyone to her pity party. Ever since losing her sight six months ago, Maggie's rebellious streak has taken on a life of its own, culminating with an elaborate school prank. Maggie called it genius. The judge called it illegal.
Now Maggie has a probation officer. But she isn't interested in rehabilitation, not when she's still mourning the loss of her professional-soccer dreams, and furious at her so-called friends, who lost interest in her as soon as she could no longer lead the team to victory.
Then Maggie's whole world is turned upside down. Somehow, incredibly, she can see again. But only one person: Ben, a precocious ten-year-old unlike anyone she's ever met. Ben's life isn't easy, but he doesn't see limits, only possibilities. After awhile, Maggie starts to realize that losing her sight doesn't have to mean losing everything she dreamed of. Even if what she's currently dreaming of is Mason Milton, the magnetic lead singer of Maggie's new favorite band, who just happens to be Ben's brother.
But when she learns the real reason she can see Ben, Maggie must find the courage to face a once-unimaginable future...before she loses everything she has grown to love.
I have to say, choosing to sign up for the ARC tour of this was completely random. I saw the description of the book and thought it may be interesting, but knew it was something I usually wouldn’t be drawn to. I couldn’t be happier that I decided to try this book! It was amazing.
I really liked the main character, Maggie – her voice was real and interesting. I can’t lie that the fact that she lived in Connecticut was a major factor in this! I don’t often get to read books that happen in my home state. Aside from Maggie, I looooved all of the characters. Ben was easily my favorite; he was adorable and hilarious. Maggie’s parents (well, mostly her dad) were definitely interesting too. You don’t normally think about how something like this happening also affects your family. Her mom and dad had to completely alter their lives to make sure she was taken care of, but they didn’t realize how much that affected Maggie, too. She just wanted to try to live as normally as possible. I liked her father’s effort and concern about her.
This book definitely made me think. I can’t imagine having sight and then going blind – you know what the world was like but you no longer get to see it. It made me wonder which would be “better,” being born blind vs. going blind. You don’t realize how many things need to change once you lose your eyesight. I loved this being explored (a little bit) with her new friend, who was born blind. Friendship was an important theme within this book, more so than anything else. Since she lost her eyesight, her life and friendships completely changed. She couldn’t attend her old high school or play soccer anymore, so she had to come to terms with all of that somehow. She tried to get back in touch with her old friends but found that so much had changed. She was swept up by Ben and his family, which was really touching.
Do you ever just LOVE a book so much, even though it has a few flaws, that you’re able to overlook the little nagging issues in it? This book was near perfect for me – not because it was actually perfect, but because I was so engrossed in the story that I chose to overlook the flaws. I really didn’t want to analyze it too much because it was enjoyable and engrossing. I liked the romance element, but it seemed kind of sudden. Not in an instalove way or anything, but I just didn’t FEEL chemistry as early as they claimed to have felt chemistry. This felt kind of like telling instead of showing. Some aspects felt one-dimensional.
Another quick thing: I mentioned the theme of friendship above, which I enjoyed overall, but I felt very weird about how things happened with Sophie. I don’t want to spoil anything, I’ll say that a major THING happens to her that felt kind of like a random, unnecessary addition to the story… especially because there wasn’t any real closure with it. It felt unfinished, and because of that, I don’t think it was necessary. View Spoiler »Her friend ends up pregnant and Maggie helps her talk to her parents. She ends up moving away with her mom and having to raise the baby (I’m guessing). Maggie sees this as the end of their friendship for some reason, even though it wouldn’t be unreasonable for her to keep in touch or try to make things work. « Hide Spoiler
I loved this book. I’m so, so glad I hopped out of my bubble and read it. I wasn’t sure how I would relate to the blind main character, but it completely opened my eyes. Wow, that was an awful unintended pun. I loved the themes of family and friendship, as well as the musical elements, a touch of romance, and a few parts that made me tear up. I’m really happy with the way the book ended, too. So adorable.