Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Painted Blind by Michelle Hansen

Seventeen years old and agoraphobic, Psyche Middleton vows her dad will never see the risqué photos she took during a summer modeling stint abroad, but one of them ends up on a billboard in her Montana hometown. Now everyone—especially her dad—can see it. And yet, somehow, those are the mundane things in her life because she is about to fall unexpectedly, head-over-heels in love with Erik, a mysterious young man who rescues her from a crowd of admirers, and who she’s never actually seen because…he can make himself invisible.

As strange as this may seem, it’s about to get even stranger. Erik takes her to his palace in an idyllic kingdom, and she is swept into the beauty and culture of his world, but his affection has one condition: she may not see him. Overtaken, intrigued, and still not wholeheartedly believing he’s real, Psyche is going to have to decide if she can love him blindly; because if she can’t, she may lose him forever.

THOUGHTS:

Out of all the mythological retellings I've read over the past year, Painted Blind is my favorite. The world-building is sublime; the plot is relatively fast-paced; and the characters are engaging. The writing is beautiful - the descriptions of Erik's world are intricately detailed - and not a page of this book bored me. Though I pretty much knew how the story will progress since I am well acclimated with the myth of Cupid (Eros) and Psyche, Michelle Hansen threw little plot twists here and there to make this story truly her own.

I love how Hansen portrayed Psyche. Usually, when authors attempt to make a beautiful girl insecure and frightened of all the stares and attention, everything falls flat. They make the girl sound too whiny and ungrateful - and most of the time irritating - but that isn't the case for Psyche. Sure, she may be described as being unearthly beautiful, but like every girl who has to go through life with eyes feasted upon her every move, she quakes under the stares. Like every girl thrust into the public eye for something she's not proud of, she does everything she can to hide herself. The way Hansen talked about Psyche's fear of people and unwarranted attention was definitely believable, and in no way did I even doubt how Psyche felt throughout the book.

What I loved the most about this book was its supporting characters. While I didn't blink my eyes in disbelief at Psyche and Erik's love, I never felt like I actually got to know Erik as opposed to his servant, Aeas, and Psyche's servant, Titus. (Be warned - I'm using the term servant very loosely here.) Yes, I do see that he's very protective and that he does indeed love Psyche very much, but I think that that's all that I got from what I read and nothing else. I really wish that his character could have been explored more, but then again, this book was told from Psyche's point of view. I guess you can't really expect her to paint the man she loves in a bad light. However, as Aeas and Titus were both there for Psyche every step of the way when she had to accomplish the impossible, I really felt like I got to know the both them. Moreover, Psyche described both characters as she saw them - no sugarcoating whatsoever. If they did something that she didn't like, or they wanted her to do something that she won't do, she'd call it as it is. I also loved how Psyche and Titus interacted with each other - their banter was fun to read, and seeing their friendship progress was also entertaining.

Overall, Painted Blind was an entertaining and enjoyable read. I would definitely recommend it to readers who love retellings of myths - you won't regret reading this book!

Rating: 4 Stars 

Thank you to Createspace and NetGalley for providing me an e-copy of this book!

4 comments:

  1. Wow, great review! I've been really excited for this book--I love Psyche and Eris retellings! Now I really can't wait to get my hands on this book! :)

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    1. Thank you! :) I'm a huge fan of Psyche and Eros retellings myself!

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  2. I saw this book on netgalley, but I had no idea it was actually a greek mythology retelling! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on it, it sounds really awesome, and I can't wait to read it.

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    1. I was a bit surprised when I found out that it was a retelling as well. I hope you enjoy reading Painted Blind! :)

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