Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Edward's Eyes

Edward's Eyes

Patricia MacLachlan
For ages 9 to 12
Simon and Schuster, 2009   ISBN: 978-1416927440

From the moment when Jake looks into baby Edward's eyes for the first time, he is totally smitten by his little brother. He reads to Edward, talks to him, and teaches him all about baseball. There is something about Edward that makes the blue eyed boy special, and he grows up to become a smart, amusing, loving boy who just happens to adore baseball with a passion. Edward plays in the family baseball games every day until the colder weather of fall forces him to give it up for the time being.

One summer Edward becomes more than just a great batter in the daily baseball games. He also teaches himself how to pitch a phenomenal knuckle ball, one which no one can hit. It really does seem that there is nothing that Edward can't do.

When a new baby is born, Edward not only names her Sabrina, but he takes over the care of her, just as Jake did for Edward when Edward was a baby. Edward is eager for Sabrina to be a part of the baseball scene in his family so he goes to town on his bike to buy her a little baseball hat. He never comes home. Edward crashes his bike into a tree and he is mortally injured. Wanting something good come out of their terrible loss, Jake's parents decide to donate Edward's organs.

Grief stricken Jake is, at first, furious about what his parents have done. How could they agree to do such a thing to Edward? Then the family gets a letter from the person who received Edward's corneas, and Jake starts to consider that maybe organ donation is not such a bad thing after all.

In this remarkable story readers will see how some of the younger members of an  extraordinary family form special relationships with each other. These relationships provide the children with a vital support system and precious friendships. When Jake loses Edward he truly feels as if a huge part of himself is gone.

Though this is a very sad tale (the reading of it might require the use of handkerchiefs), there is also a message of hope at the end. Though Edward is gone, he still lives on in the people he left behind, including the people who received a priceless gift from him