Sight Unseen by Susan Mac Nicol with Nicholas Downs
I’m not sure 5 stars is enough to be honest as this was so much more than I expected and such a wonderful story my head is full of it and I’m not sure I’m ready to share how I’m feeling! But still, the book is out and anyone can read it so I mustn’t be all possessive and territorial over it. It’s just that it touched me so much more than I expected and I feel all gooey and happy and find myself saying ‘awww’ an awful lot! Sounds crazy I know but with so many new books coming out all the time I’ve become slightly jaded and cynical and it takes a lot these days to leave me feeling satisfied. (Really wanted to put sated, but we’ll get to that later.)
I’m not going to lie, Susan MacNicol is one of my ‘go to’ authors and as such I’m always a little bit hesitant when she releases a new book in case I don’t like it as much as her previous ones. So far, luckily that hasn’t happened and I’ve really enjoyed everything she has written. But oh boy, has Susan set herself up with this latest one. Sight Unseen is undoubtedly her best so far, in my opinion, and it’s going to be a very hard act to follow.
Nate is a popular and successful sculptor living in LA with his model boyfriend Jon, not far from his very best friend since boyhood Cody. He has a lovely house with a studio in the back yard and loves his work. However, things take a turn that will forever affect the rest of his life when Nate is involved in a hit and run accident that leaves him blind. Jon tries hard to be attentive but how can he be with a man who can’t see how beautiful he is and so he leaves him in the capable hands of Cody. Cody is in love with Nate and has been since they were fifteen, however after a brief fling at seventeen they have remained just as friends. Nate also harbours feelings for Cody but doesn’t want to jeopardise their friendship in case his feelings aren’t reciprocated.
What follows is their story and how they reconnect. It’s not as simple as it seems as outside factors try to influence their chance at a future together. It’s a great story and flows very well yet the dynamic between Nate and Cody is the thread that pulls it all together. They have so much chemistry it just leaps off the page and their sex scenes are so hot and beautifully written. All of this contributes to a really wonderful love story set against the very real struggle Nate has coming to terms with his blindness. For an artist to not be able to see his work is terribly distressing yet Susan has managed to sensitively convey how Nate deals with everything and not make him too ‘woe is me’ but determined and eventually optimistic. Nate is like one of his sculptures that begins as an unmoulded mess and with loving tender care, emerges as something beautiful and full of life. Nate and Cody will remain with me for a long time after I have finished this book.
Overall, as you can probably tell this book moved me in so many ways. I enjoyed the other characters, the plot, the angst and the humour. I loved Cody and his happy hippy attitude to life, and of course Nate who I admire so much for his gritty determination to overcome his blindness and start to see things in so many different ways. And the sex – oh my goodness, I fanned myself a lot! All the right ingredients for a fantastic read.