Tuesday, October 8, 2013

She is not Invisible by Marcus Sedgwick

Today I', really pleases to have Marcus Sedgewisk over at Escapism from Reality. His latest book She is not Invisible hit the shelves last week and he will be talking about it.
If you don't know what this book is about, below is the blurb and more details

SHE IS NOT INVISIBLE by Marcus Sedgwick 
Laureth Peak's father is a writer. For years he's been trying, and failing, to write a novel about coincidence. His wife thinks he's obsessed, Laureth thinks he's on the verge of a breakdown.He's supposed to be doing research in Austria, so when his notebook shows up in New York, Laureth knows something is wrong.

On impulse she steals her mother's credit card and heads for the States, taking her strange little brother Benjamin with her. Reunited with the notebook, they begin to follow clues inside, trying to find their wayward father. Ahead lie challenges and threats, all of which are that much tougher for Laureth than they would be for any other 16-year old. Because Laureth Peak is blind.

I don't about anyone else, but it sure seems interesting.  Especially about the protagonist being blind as I think this will open a whole new world of perception. so when I had the opportunity to have MA
Marcus at my blog I had to ask him him about it. Here's what he had to say.

As I write, it’s only day one in the life of my new book, She Is Not Invisible, and already, one question seems to be rising up above the others: why did I choose to write with a blind protagonist?

It’s a good question, but one that is surprising in a way since we decided not to even mention that Laureth Peak is blind on the jacket copy. This was a deliberate choice, because if at all possible, I wanted to avoid the idea that this is a book ABOUT a blind girl. It’s not. It’s a book about coincidence and a writer’s obsession with that subject, in which the heroine just so happens to be blind. There’s a big difference between those two things.

I’d been working on this book, on and off, for five years before I decided to have the protagonist be blind. For some long and complicated reasons, I met a blind girl, and at that point, I thought no more than; would it be interesting to make Laureth blind? I think once I’d had that thought, though, it was always going to turn out that way. Of course, I knew at once that this was going to be a big challenge, but I had no idea how big until I started to do some really serious research. I read a lot of literature, fiction and non-fiction. I did obvious things like spend the day blindfolded. But none of these things really got me close, because they don’t teach you what it’s like to never have seen, and I had decided that I wanted Laureth to have been blind from birth.

So two years ago I made the first of a series of visits to a unique school called New College, in Worcester. This is a state boarding school for blind and VI students, and from that first visit on I realised two things. Firstly just what a big challenge I had set myself, and secondly, that if I was going to get anywhere near achieving it, I had come to the right place. That’s because the young people I met during my various trips were unbelievably honest, open, generous and patient with someone who started off by asking all the stupid questions they always get asked.

But the months went by and I kept speaking to my new friends there, and slowly I began to think that maybe I could pull this off after all.  I still don’t know what it’s like to have been blind from birth. How can you ever forget what colour is, to give just one example? But I was given an enormous helping hand by the generosity of the students of New College, and if I’ve got close to their experience at all, it’s through their help.

Why did I write with a blind protagonist? There’s another way of answering that, which is much shorter. Why not? Why wouldn’t I? I’ve written about all sorts of people, and since 1 person in 30 in the UK has some form of sight loss, it was probably about time I did.

She is not Invisible released on the 3rd of October, 2013 by Indigo.


Ailsa on October 8, 2013 at 9:09 PM said...

I've worked with some blind and VI young people at my summer camp over the past few years, and it's always an experience that reminds me just how much I take for granted with my sight, and how normally these young people are even with the difficulties of not being able to see. I'm looking forward to reading this, it sounds great from what I've heard so far :)

Escapism Fanatic on October 9, 2013 at 12:29 AM said...

It's so true. We all take our eye sight for granted and don't appreciate it enough.
So I think it's about time we have more main stream literature on this topic.

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