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Love and First Sight
Cover of Love and First Sight
Love and First Sight
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In his debut novel, YouTube personality and author of We Should Hang Out Sometime Josh Sundquist explores the nature of love, trust, and romantic attraction.On his first day at a new school, blind...
In his debut novel, YouTube personality and author of We Should Hang Out Sometime Josh Sundquist explores the nature of love, trust, and romantic attraction.On his first day at a new school, blind...
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Description-

  • In his debut novel, YouTube personality and author of We Should Hang Out Sometime Josh Sundquist explores the nature of love, trust, and romantic attraction.

    On his first day at a new school, blind sixteen-year-old Will Porter accidentally groped a girl on the stairs, sat on another student in the cafeteria, and somehow drove a classmate to tears. High school can only go up from here, right?

    As Will starts to find his footing, he develops a crush on a charming, quiet girl named Cecily. Then an unprecedented opportunity arises: an experimental surgery that could give Will eyesight for the first time in his life. But learning to see is more difficult than Will ever imagined, and he soon discovers that the sighted world has been keeping secrets. It turns out Cecily doesn't meet traditional definitions of beauty—in fact, everything he'd heard about her appearance was a lie engineered by their so-called friends to get the two of them together. Does it matter what Cecily looks like? No, not really. But then why does Will feel so betrayed?

    Told with humor and breathtaking poignancy, Love and First Sight is a story about how we relate to each other and the world around us.

About the Author-

  • Josh Sundquist is a Paralympic ski racer, cancer survivor, popular YouTube vlogger, motivational speaker, and Halloween enthusiast. Every Tuesday, Josh releases a new video to 200,000-plus subscribers on his YouTube channel. He is the author of We Should Hang Out Sometime and the bestselling Just Don't Fall. As a motivational speaker, Josh speaks to schools, conventions, and corporations across the world. He invites you to visit him online at joshsundquist.com or follow him at @JoshSundquist.

Reviews-

  • Publisher's Weekly

    October 17, 2016
    At the start of this engaging novel from motivational speaker and memoir writer Sundquist (We Should Hang Out Sometime), 16-year-old Will Porter enrolls at Toano High School. Blind since birth, Will knows that if he is going to become a journalist, he must prove that he can live independently in the sighted world. His first day is a fiasco, but Will acclimates quickly and befriends a girl named Cecily. Romance seems destined until Will undergoes a cornea transplant and discovers that Cecily hasn’t been entirely forthcoming about her appearance. Will’s trust in Cecily is shattered, and he’s left wondering whether their relationship is worth salvaging. The plot’s beats are predictable, and the interpersonal conflicts can ring false, but Sundquist writes eloquently about what it might be like for someone who was born blind to be given sight. He explores the physical, emotional, and psychological ramifications of Will’s change in a thoughtful and evocative manner, providing readers with a fresh perspective on how humans interact with each other and the world around them. Ages 12–up. Agent: Lucy Carson, Friedrich Agency.

  • AudioFile Magazine Narrator Pat Young delivers this audiobook about our senses and how we interpret them. Sixteen-year-old Will, blind from birth, enters a mainstream public school for the first time and, in rapid succession, finds a strong coterie of pals, discovers friendship with a bright and troubled girl who is a photographer, undergoes experimental surgery on his eyes, and faces losing his newly gained vision. Young's voicing of the story's cast--Will's hovering mother, his insightful English teacher, the kids on the quiz team--enhances Sundquist's deft characterizations. In the audio format, the accounts of Will's world encourage listeners to reflect on their own sensory awareness. Add the well-developed romantic theme, and this is a perfect listening experience. F.M.R.G. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award � AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine
  • Kirkus

    October 15, 2016
    Sundquist (We Should Hang Out Sometime, 2014) explores blindness and sight in his first novel. Aspiring to be "the Stevie Wonder of journalism," white, congenitally blind Will Porter is confident that mainstreaming into high school at 16 will be a snap. But things get awkward when he falls for Cecily, an artistic, evasive white girl with a knack for explaining visual concepts. Soon, Will learns that he has the opportunity to gain eyesight via experimental retinal stem-cell implants. His difficult decision sensitively explores disability and its influence on identity. The author's research shows; there are frequent explanations of eyesight and its relationship to the brain. That information is critical for understanding the disorientation and frustration that Will experiences upon gaining eyesight. Sight requires him to learn colors, shapes, and perspective as if he's just been born--which, in a sense, he has. Such surprises as racial differences (when he sees African-American pal Whitford for the first time he thinks, "What's the fuss about?"), paintings, and a "counterintuitive" snowstorm prompt interesting reflections, and his new perspective is tested when he realizes that Cecily's appearance significantly differs from his cheerfully nerdy new friends' descriptions of her. The juxtaposition of blindness with (not) judging by appearances is common, but the author gives depth to the trope by highlighting the betrayal Will feels at the exploitation of his blindness. The resolution is optimistic yet realistically open-ended. Thought-provoking and insightful. (author's note) (Romance. 13-18)

    COPYRIGHT(2016) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    November 1, 2016

    Gr 7 Up-Blind since birth, 16-year-old Will Porter has decided that he is ready to mainstream at a new high school rather than continue attending his former school for blind students. After a few minor missteps, which are presented with humor, he adjusts to the new school and makes some interesting friends along the way. The most unique aspect of this inspiring tale is that it is told exclusively from Will's point of view. The author succeeds at providing readers with a sense of the challenges of day-to-day life for someone with a visual disability, especially for a risk-taking teenager who is striving to be independent. A close friendship and budding romance between Will and fellow student Cecily add further layers. When Will considers surgery to restore his sight, the threat that this possibility poses to the teens' relationship will encourage young adults to think about their own biases related to physical attractiveness and body image. Readers will enjoy the humor and romance of the story while gaining a better understanding of life with a visual disability. Sundquist makes it clear that Will is not defined by his disability; he often has better "vision" than those with eyesight. VERDICT A highly recommended and engaging story for most YA collections.-Theresa Muraski, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point

    Copyright 2016 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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