Review: Blind Spot by Laura Ellen

Title:  Blind Spot
Author:  Laura Ellen
Series:  None
Publisher:  Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication Date:  October 23, 2012
Pages:  336
Format/Source:  eARC/Publisher via NetGalley

Age Group/Genre:  Young Adult/Contemporary, Thriller, Mystery

There’s none so blind as they that won’t see.

Seventeen-year-old Tricia Farni’s body floated to the surface of Alaska’s Birch River six months after the night she disappeared. The night Roz Hart had a fight with her. The night Roz can’t remember. Roz, who struggles with macular degeneration, is used to assembling fragments to make sense of the world around her. But this time it’s her memory that needs piecing together—to clear her name . . . to find a murderer.

This unflinchingly emotional novel is written in the powerful first-person voice of a legally blind teen who just wants to be like everyone else. (Synopsis and cover photo from Goodreads)

Tons of Potential…

Earlier this year I saw this book on a blog somewhere and decided I HAD to read it.  So I was really excited to get approved to read a copy through NetGalley!  It just sounded so suspenseful and interesting, so I was glad to finally get down to reading it.

I do have to say, I was left feeling a bit disappointed.  The synopsis was pretty misleading, I think.  I mean, the whole first line really doesn’t seem to fit the book at all except for the fact that Roz, the main character, has a condition which makes her legally blind.  And the synopsis definitely makes the book out to be a non-stop, edge-of-your-seat thrill ride.  There were some thrilling parts, sure, but by that synopsis I was expecting it to be the entire book.

I did enjoy the book for the most part, and it was a very quick read, which I appreciated, since I had been slogging through my previous read.  But it was less about the whole mystery and more about Roz and her friendships and relationships.  Which is fine, but I guess I just felt like this premise had such potential, and it just failed to live up to that.

I also often felt frustrated with a lot of the characters.  I know you’re supposed to be angry and frustrated with some characters sometimes, but I seemed to get irked by things that weren’t intentional character flaws.  And when I’m reading a YA book (as I do most of the time these days) and I get annoyed by something one of the characters does, I have to remind my 32-year-old self that it’s a realistic action for a teenager.  However, there’s only so many times I can do that in one book before it just becomes an unlikable character for me.  I didn’t completely dislike Roz, but she did a few things that put her on my list.

I did like reading from the viewpoint of a girl with macular degeneration, and one who spends some time in a Special Education class.  I’ve never read any books from this perspective and I really enjoyed it.  And I did really like the reason behind her name.  Very clever!

My rating for Blind Spot by Laura Ellen:

3 stars.  I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it.  I really felt like it could have been so much more.  For a review by someone who enjoyed the book more than I did, check out this one by Beth at A Foodie Bibliophile in Wanderlust.

Find it:  Goodreads │ Amazon │ Houghton Mifflin

Disclaimer:  I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley (Thanks, NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin!) in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other way for this review.


  1. Jessie Marie

    October 17, 2012 at 12:04 pm

    Bummer deal. I'm sorry it wasn't as exciting as expected.

    I struggle with unlikeable characters, too. Like, I understand the same as you that we're not meant to like every character but sometimes even the likable ones prove troublesome. That frustrates me to no end.

    I'm glad it was a quick read and I'm glad it at least managed to meet the middle of the road. The good news is – not every book is for everybody. : )

  2. Andrea @ Cozy Up

    October 17, 2012 at 5:45 pm

    I'm sorry to hear that this one didn't work out for you. It sounds like the synopsis is definitely misleading for this book. I would be expecting a thrilling book with some action to it. Glad it was a nice quick read though, those are always great even when you're not into the book.

  3. Bittner

    October 18, 2012 at 10:27 am

    Wow, this is a really short review for you. Either you must be far busier then I thought you were right now or you must really not have liked this book.

  4. Megan

    October 18, 2012 at 10:16 pm

    Too bad this one didn't live up to your expectations. I hate it when a character constantly is doing things that are dumb. Pet peeve of mine!

  5. Jen Ryland/YA Romantics

    October 19, 2012 at 12:13 am

    I loved the concept of this one, then started it and had a hard time getting into it. I may try again later!

  6. fakesteph

    October 19, 2012 at 2:08 am

    I'm so disappointed. This is one that I'm reeeeally excited for!

  7. Kimberly @ On the Wings of Books

    October 19, 2012 at 2:03 pm

    I'm sorry that this one didn't live up to your expectations. I totally get what you mean about the characters. I can only remind myself that they are just teenagers so many times before I become annoyed by it. The macular degeneration part of the story is very interesting, and very uncommon, I'm glad you liked that part of it.

  8. Beth S.

    October 21, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    I was frustrated with the characters too, most especially Roz, but I definitely found it quite page-turning despite my initial dislike for the main character. I think the only thing that finally made her redeeming was her affection for the people in her "special needs" class.

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