“You have to learn to love yourself before you can love someone else.”
Faceless by Alyssa Sheinmel
When Maisie Winters wakes up, she’s in the hospital.
The last thing she remembers is running through the hills of her neighborhood one misty morning. Slowly, she puts the pieces together. Before she could make it home, a storm gathered. Lightning hit a power line and sparks rained down, the hot-burning electrical fire consuming her. Destroying her face. Where her nose, cheeks, and chin used to be, now there is…nothing.
Maisie’s lucky enough to qualify for a rare medical treatment: a face transplant. At least, everyone says she’s lucky. But with someone else’s features staring back at her in the mirror, Maisie looks—and feels—like a stranger. The doctors promised that the transplant was her chance to live a normal life again, but nothing feels normal anymore. Before, she knew who she was—a regular girl who ran track and got good grades, who loved her boyfriend and her best friend. Now, she can’t even recognize herself.
If anything this book has certainly been one of the most emotional reads of this year. Face transplants are not something that I’ve heard a lot about; and I was so excited when one of my friends gifted me this for my birthday!
This story is focused on a girl called Maisie who undergoes a face transplant after a particularly bad accident; and her journey to accepting herself with a new face. Personally, I think that the author – Alyssa Sheinmel has an amazingly unique way of writing. She managed to write a book that talked about such a serious topic but refrained from making it such a heavy read that it overwhelms the reader.
The characters in this book were extremely well written and as far as I’m concerned I didn’t think there were any problems with them. I was worried that Maisie would be one of those characters who would be unusually cool after just having her faced removed; but she really wasn’t. Maisie still struggled with accepting herself and it wasn’t a morning after thing it took Maisie the duration of the whole book to merely accept herself and even then she still wasn’t completely healed.
I felt this book is one that will stay with me for a long time and one that I think many more people should read. It’s a book about emotion, and hurt, and self acceptance; this book reminded me of just how hard things can be for some people sometimes.