Saturday, 9 February 2013

Blind Faith, N.R. Walker

A veterinarian falls for the owner of one of his 'patients', a blind man.  They must work together over time to establish a relationship when one is full of anger and insecurities.

** This review has slight spoilers **

- Review by Cindi

Blind Faith

Carter Reese, a veterinarian, has moved to Boston to take a position at an animal hospital.  He is replacing a retiring vet who still makes house calls.  During one of these house calls with the other man, Carter meets Isaac and his service dog, Brady.  Isaac has been blind since he was a small child and Brady is the last of many service dogs that he has had over the years.  Isaac receives help from his sister, Hannah, who comes over almost every day to insure that his needs are met.  He is a teacher at a school for the blind and he is very self-sufficient.  After a rocky start between the two men, over time they become friends and then later more.  

Brady is the ultimate service dog.  He does his job and he does his job well.  But he receives no attention from Isaac other than instructions when he is working.  No playing, touching or petting.  He ignores the dog who is desperately wanting approval from his owner.  Carter, as well as others, notices Isaac's reaction to the dog but they don't push it with Isaac.  Isaac has a temper and is prone to throwing tantrums without warning.  Carter, still new to the relationship, refuses to bring up anything that will hurt them as a couple so he continues to stay quiet with the exception of a couple of comments made that ended in Isaac shutting him out.  This continues until much later in the book when Isaac ends up in a dangerous situation and Brady saves his life.

This book started off well.  I like that it is about a character with a disability.  As mentioned above, Isaac is very self-sufficient.  He is able to manage around his home and place of employment with no problem.  He is even able to catch a bus and do things away from his home with the help of Brady.  I liked Carter early on as well.  Isaac's sister was perfect.  Helpful when needed but quick to put Isaac in his place when he becomes difficult and believe me,  Isaac becomes difficult often.  Carter is extremely patient because he has quickly fallen in love with the other man.  But when Carter voices his true feelings, Isaac clams up and the book started going downhill for me.  

I tried to be sympathetic to Isaac because of his disability and I am.  But I could not be sympathetic when he was acting like a bratty child.  He did this often.  While his blindness may  be the underlying cause for this, it is not front and center during the times this is happening.  Carter says the three words.  Isaac freaks out.  Carter takes off and refuses to accept Isaac's calls because he's sure Isaac is calling to say goodbye.  This is where Carter's character went downhill for me as well.  Instead of manning up and having a discussion, he runs and refuses to answer his phone because of what he assumes Isaac will say.  

"It's bad enough I don't have sight, I can't deal with silence too."

They eventually work things out and then later Isaac does the clamming up and ignoring of phone calls, in effect not taking his own advice (see above quote).  I felt like I was reading a Young Adult book where two teenagers were going back and forth. It did not read as an adult novel in some places (with the exception of the sex) because each character was acting like a child.  The reasons for Isaac's lack of attention to Brady comes out and I felt that it fell flat.  I could understand it to an extent but I felt that that particular part of the story was overdone and dragged out too long.  Also, I know of no good veterinarian who would stand by and allow an owner of a dog to simply ignore it.  Don't get me wrong, Brady is well cared-for but he's not loved by his owner and this is obvious.  Isaac may feel it inside but he does not show any affection toward the dog outwardly.

Other than Brady, the perfect guide dog, the saving grace for me in this book is Mark, Carter's bisexual best friend who makes a couple of visits.  He is adorable.  He's funny and he takes no prisoners, so to speak.  What you see is what you get.  I loved him from his first introduction.  Had he been in the book more I may have enjoyed the story more than I did.  I also enjoyed reading about Isaac's sister.  She plays a big part in the story and she is written perfectly.

I ended this not feeling a lot of love for either main character.  It was a quick read and there are a few "Aww..." moments but nothing that really stood out for me.  There is a bit of fast-forwarding in the relationship... "weeks later..." .... or.... "months later..."  I would have liked to have seen what happened during those months or weeks.  I understand the author was wanting to push the relationship along without it seeming like it was insta-love but I am one who wants details and I felt that a lot were left out.

Overall, a good book but nothing really spectacular.  Had I liked Isaac and Carter more, I would have probably loved the story.  Unfortunately, that was not the case.


  1. Thanks for this review, Cindi. I had it on my TBR but no longer. I would NOT like this book. If there's no love for the animal I'm gone. The characters would have annoyed me no end.

    1. There actually IS an explanation (a semi good one) for why the guy was stand-offish with the dog. But I felt that it could have been written better and that it dragged on too long. Not a horrible book but I wasn't keen on either MC. The liked the dogs and secondaries more. :)

    2. * I liked the dogs and secondaries better. :)