Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Review ~ Not by Sight by Kate Breslin

Some books are read. Some books are devoured. Not by Sight by Kate Breslin is to be savored. As much as I wanted to read this book and not put it down, I kept finding myself slowing down as I read in order to enjoy the wonderful writing and compelling story Kate Breslin gave us in this treasure, Not By Sight,

Grace Mabry, the daughter of a tea shop owner in London in 1917, and the twin sister of a brother fighting on the front lines for his Great Britain, is appalled and disgusted that any able bodied man would stay home from the Great War to laze around when so many are giving their lives for their country. Compelled by these emotions, Grace and her lovely companion sneak into a costume ball filled with many of these war dodgers in order to shame each man with the white feather of cowardice.

Jack Benningham appears to be the greatest coward of them all - at least on the outside. Upon receiving one of Grace's feathers, he is amused by her gall, and transfixed by her beauty, so much so that he loses track of the real reason he is attending the ball - a far more important one than just helping the Red Cross.

First, I really enjoyed learning more about WWI. As someone who generally sticks to WWII history, I am slightly embarrassed at how little I know about WWI - especially in England. It was fun to learn about the Women's Forage Corps and the suffragette movement in England and Europe, as well as hints at Mata Hari and the use of spies throughout Europe during the war.

I really loved the character development in this book. Everyone had such depth, both the main and secondary characters. Everyone also had a secret of some kind that they were hiding. While the overall story was about Grace and Jack, there were many side stories that played out throughout the book, that pulled me in as a reader and made me want to know more about each one. They did not detract from the main story, but instead helped it along in some rather surprising ways.

These stories also helped with the theme of the book: not by sight. As someone who has had poor eyesight her entire life, I really related to this theme, and its various meanings throughout the book. Sight can refer to physical, emotional, relational and spiritual aspects, and all three are dealt with in Not By Sight. While I've always dealt with the physical aspects of poor eyesight, I'm only really just now exploring it's meaning when it comes to emotions and relationships, and even sometimes, how my spiritual walk needs work. I've come to realize how blinded I am at times when it comes to these parts of my life, and it was interesting to see how the characters in this book dealt with their blindness in these areas, and how they changed because of it.

A truly beautiful tale full of glorious scenery, suspense and intrigue, and even a Beauty and the Beast-esque romance, readers will find themselves captivated by the wonderful story, complex characters, and the importance of living by faith and not by sight in all aspects of life.

Happy Reading!

Sarah K.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for such a lovely review, Sarah, I'm so pleased you enjoyed Grace and Jack's story.:) God bless!