Letter Essay #7- Mia Larkin

I have lately read a 394-page book. The book is Blind, by Rachel DeWoskin. Rachel DeWoskin spent her twenties in China as a nighttime soap opera. She has also written 2 other books. Big Girl Small (one of the other books) received the American Library Association´s Alex Award. Throughout writing Blind, she learned Braille at the Chicago Lighthouse that was for the blind. Rachel now lives in Chicago and Beijing with her husband and two little girls. I choose to read this book because it seemed interesting. The book summary really stood out to me and the plot seemed good as well.

In the book, Emma has so many questions and wants to know what’s going on around her. Ever since her tragic accident and becoming disabled (being blind) it has been hard for Emma to accept things. Later on, a peer of Emma’s ends up dead. Emma knows that there is something more the adults around her aren’t letting her know, so along with her friends, they go out to figure out if Claire (the dead girl) committed suicide. Through this, there is a test of friendship and new discoveries that lead Emma to new hope and recovery.

The narrative voice of the book is in Emma’s viewpoint. I found this interesting because she is blind. The way that she sees her world differently from ours intrigued me. Instead of using sight to know what’s going on around her she used sound. As an example from the book, when Emma is getting ready for breakfast she listens for different things. “I tensed waiting for the sound of gas, the flame catching it, the smell.” (pg. 90). Here this shows not only that she uses sounds, but smell as well. I found this point of view exceptionally well written for the author not being blind. It was like a sneak peek of seeing how blind people see the world.

I liked the way that the author was very descriptive in Emma’s point of view. Though the author herself is not blind, she portrayed the scenes very well. It would’ve been simpler to have a different view perspective but, the author kept going through with Emma’s point of view. This shows how the author is able to portray certain ideas in people’s minds. In this case, it was being blind. The author was able to give Emma “sight”, which therefore allowed us as the readers to see what was going on around Emma. I am assuming that this novel was hard to write, but DeWoskin was able to give Emma “sight” to see with.

I was surprised that throughout the book there were a lot of deep meanings and deep thoughts. On the very first few pages of the book, there are a lot of deep thoughts and meanings. This honestly surprised me because it sort of just jumped out at me. I guess you could say it caught me off guard a bit. I didn’t expect it to be right in the front. Though I do feel it was an appropriate introduction. Since Emma is still finding her way it makes sense that the book would open with questions and deep thoughts.

I was interested in the very last part of the book. (Don’t read if you want to read this book). This is the part at the very end when Emma’s mom painted a painting of Emma. She made it in a special way that Emma can “see” the painting. When Emma gets to her face on the painting her mother asks if she would like to cover the scar with sunglasses.

“I said, ‘It’s lunchtime, big girl!’ toward her, and she said, “Mema,” which is definitely Emma because she only uses on syllable for “Ma.” ‘Right. Emma!’ I told her. Then I touched my own face; slid my sunglasses off my nose and pushed them up into my hair. I was thinking as I did it that maybe the gesture would become a habit. Sunglasses make cute headbands. And it felt good to get the hair out of my eyes-I hadn’t realized how hot it had gotten until I moved it. I felt the scar on my eye, as familiar as my mom’s skin or the sound of her voice, speaking colors to me. When the doorbell rang, I stayed still for a minute, facing my mom before I went to let in Logan and Annabelle and Spark. ‘Don’t bother with sunglasses,’ I told her. ‘I like how it is.’” (pg. 395).

In this passage of writing it shows Emma’s self-resolution and self-acceptance. The reason why I was interested in this is because it shows how the author can “hide” things inside the text. As you can see from the passage it wasn’t ultimately clear that Emma found her resolution, but if you dig deeper into the text, it shows that she was able to find self-acceptance and resolution. I would rate the book a 5 out of 10. Thanks for reading!



  Mia Larkin


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8 thoughts on “Letter Essay #7- Mia Larkin

  1. Dear Mia,
    I loved reading your letter essay. The way you really thought about the text was awesome, but I felt like 2 of your 3 paragraphs-using-the-green-sheet-topics were extremely similar. I felt like both the one on the narrative voice and the descriptions were really about the descriptions. This is still a good thing, though, as it is practice in connecting narrative voice and certain parts of a book.

    1. I agree with Sarah on this, Mia. Your letter-essay was really well done and you included some textual evidence in your first Reflection paragraph but the other two were similar but that is okay. I liked how you really analyzed your own feelings about how the author constructed the book.
      Mr. Jockers

  2. Dear Mia,
    Great job on this letter essay! It really showed lots of your own thinking on the book in amazing detail. I especially liked how you noticed character change in the last paragraph. It displayed how well you pay attention to differences, as you get farther into a book. Keep up the great work! 🙂

    Ashley S.

  3. Greeting’s Mia,

    While I was reading your Letter Essay I was intrigued when you described Emma’s sight, it made me feel blind myself… pretty weird huh! 🙂 Thank you for the spoiler alert that really helped me skip an unfortunate situation. Thank you for sharing your letter essay! This was your last one on the blog so good job! You made this one count! 😀

    ~ Elisabeth Berg

  4. Dear Mia,
    Great job on your letter essay! Blind seems like a great book. I have read a book, Girl Stolen, which is also about a girl who is blind, and it is also a mystery book. If you liked Blind, I think you would like Girl Stolen, as well. After reading your letter essay, I can’t wait to read Blind! Amazing job!👍
    Marissa S.

  5. Dear Mia,

    I haven’t read or heard of that book, and the author is new to me as well. Based on your summary, I became intrigued and wanted to hear more. I wonder if they explain in the novel, how Emma actually becomes blind, and what that accident was. I love how you mentioned that Emma’s point of view of her friend’s death is different from many, because it is hard to be a ‘detective’ when you can’t see.

    Great Job!

    -Isabel Prentice 🙂

  6. Dear Mia,
    I really loved your writing! Blind sounds like it´s a good book! I just might consider picking it up and reading it! I like how you really shared your thoughts, and described the book really well without spoiling it! really well done!
    – Maye Stichter

  7. Dear Mia,

    I think you did an excellent job on your letter essay! I’m really interested in reading this book now! You added so much of your own thinking and it really helped me understand the book.

    Great Work!

    – Maddie Longo

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