CM . . .
. Volume XXII Number 25. . . .March 4, 2016
Set in the wilderness of the Albertan Rocky Mountains, Finn spends his last two weeks of summer with his family and his school friend, Cheese, at “Splitsville”, the family cabin. Struggling with a degenerative eye disease that will take approximately five years to completely blind him, Finn literally counts down the days, minutes and seconds until “Lights Out”. He is struggling with the loss of his ability to do all of the things he loves, including biking. However, he forgets his obsessive counting when he discovers a mysterious floating island where time stands still and his vision is strangely restored. Faced with the opportunity to spend the rest of his days hiding from his world in this place he names “Perpetuum”, Finn confronts his feelings about his disease and his relationship with his friends and family.
Taking a first person perspective, the author helps readers to “get inside” the head of a 14-year-old who has to deal with both the usual struggles of adolescence and his disease. Through his fantastic adventure, Finn wrestles with himself and his relationships, trying to come to terms with a future that he had not envisioned for himself.
David Carroll’s characterizations are highly believable and compelling. Finn is a complex character who is, at times, both likeable and unlikeable. Carroll captures the severe beauty and richness of the Rocky Mountains, creating an excellent parallel to Finn’s personal journey through his own emotional wilderness. The cadence and vocabulary of the story, although believable, is ideally suited to younger teens from ages 12-15. The subject matter offers a fresh and meaningful perspective on what it means to be “able” and “normal”, making Sight Unseen a solid addition to tween and teen collections.
Christina Neigel is an associate professor in Library and Information Technology at the University of the Fraser Valley in Abbotsford, BC. She is currently completing a doctorate in education at Simon Fraser University.
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other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.