Book Review: What Milo Saw by Virginia Macgregor

Title: What Milo Saw
Author: Virgina Macgregor
Published: August 18th 2015 by Little Brown
Amazon | Amazon UK

Blurb: A big story about a small boy who sees the world a little differently.

Milo curled his thumb and forefinger together to make a small hole and held his fingers up to Al's eyes. "Look through here. That's what I see. Kind of, only worse." "Wow, that must be amazing." Milo shrugged. "Not really." "I mean, it makes you focus, doesn't it? I bet you see all kinds of stuff that other people miss." 

Nine-year-old Milo Moon has retinitis pigmentosa: his eyes are slowly failing and he will eventually go blind. But for now he sees the world through a pin hole and notices things other people don't. When Milo's beloved gran succumbs to dementia and moves into a nursing home, Milo soon realizes there's something wrong at the home. So with just Tripi, the nursing home's cook, and Hamlet, his pet pig, to help, Milo sets out on a mission to expose the nursing home and the sinister Nurse Thornhill. Insightful, wise, and surprising, What Milo Saw is filled with big ideas and simple truths. Milo sees the world in a very special way, and it will be impossible for you not to fall in love with him and then share his story with everyone you know.

First of all I would like to thank the publishers for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*

Review: When I first picked What Milo Saw I really didn't know what to expect. But soon I realised that this story was something like nothing else. What I love about reading is that once in a while you find a book so unique and unexpected that it takes you to a completely different world and you forget about your own life for a while. And that is exactly what happened to me with What Milo Saw. Once you meet this little fella and his clever and adorable pet, Hamlet, you can't stop reading about them. You become part of their story and once finished the book, you find yourself frequently going back to them.

Milo sees the world in a very different way. Due to retinitis pigmentosa, he no longer has his peripheral vision, it's like he sees everything through a pinhole. But soon we realise that it somehow allows him to see more that others see. He sees beyond what you expect to see and makes you wonder if we are all seeing the world in the wrong way. So it's no wonder that he is the first one to realise that his grandma's new care home is not what it should be. Here is when his quest to prove something is wrong there starts and when we start meeting the rest of the cast of this quirky story. 

We meet Trippi, a Syrian refugee who looks for his lost sister in the TV news. His is a story difficult to forget. He has been through so much but is still smiling and just wants to make everyone happier. A true lesson about life. I had tears in my eyes more than once. In the care home we also meet a bunch of old ladies who different to what everyone might think, still want to enjoy life, and a not so old man who hasn't closed the door to love.

The story is told through different points of view so he get to read about Milo's plans, Tripi's thoughts, Milo's grandma's worries and even about the frustrations of Milo's mother when she fails to comprehend her own child. I think this was very clever as it made me feel part of the story and had me glued to its pages from cover to cover, even if I found the pace of the story a bit slow sometimes. But I have to say that Virgina Macgregor showed her ability to embody such different characters perfectly, they all sounded genuine and each one of them was special in their own way, with their own story to tell. A beautiful and simple writing style and could say so much in so little.

As it says in the blurb What Milo Saw is filled with big ideas and simple truths, the author certainly makes you think a lot about yourself and this world we live in. We see what we want to see but what happens when we really look? A real gem of a book, I highly recommend it.


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