Blind the Eyes
Snowmelt & Stumps (2018)
Reviewed by Tammy Ruggles for Reader Views (02/2022)
“Blind the Eyes: A Haunting YA Urban Fantasy (Threads of Dreams Book 1),” by K.A. Wiggins, is a dark fantasy novel about a teenage girl named Cole. Tempted by a golden-eyed, mysterious stranger to leave her oppressive world to avoid becoming something she doesn’t want to be is a dangerous prospect, but the stranger is enticing. Cole discovers who she is, but also has revenge on her mind, and it all plays out in an exquisitely conceived world of dreams, supernatural beings, and intriguing locations. You, along with the well-developed characters, will become enmeshed in a dark plot of secrets, strong emotion, nightmares, and death. But within its dark passages, Wiggins remembers to infuse hope, courage, and possibility.
What I really enjoyed about this book is the author’s gift for world-building and character development. You are with Cole every second on her journey and are invested in a way that causes you to care about what she’s going through, and hoping she is strong enough to not just survive, but to triumph. She has to dig deep and process in order to find the courage to stand up for herself.
The characters are different, piquing curiosity and the imagination, but well-explained and relatable. You never know what lies around the corner in this novel, but you can be sure it’s something dark, deep, and revelatory. The emotional component of Cole’s inner conflict is alluring. Who hasn’t been burdened by so many rules before, and just wanted to be free to be who they are? Who hasn’t questioned authority and doubted the accepted norm? But besides Cole, you’ll meet other supporting characters whose roles become clear and vital to the story.
I admire the way the author combines horror, mystery, and fantasy, and presents the whole novel in a consciously stylistic way. Certain passages in the book evoke a lyrical, poetic feel that really showcases Wiggins’ talent, and she uses horror in just the right places.
The immersive descriptions and manipulation of the reader’s imagination are just two standout skills to enjoy in this book. Just when you think you’ve read it all in a dystopian novel, along comes “Blind the Eyes: A Haunting YA Urban Fantasy (Threads of Dreams Book 1)”, by K.A. Wiggins, to add new life to the genre.