Courier Mail; Date: 2007 March 23; Section: Entertainment
What Makes Australia Grate • reviewed by IAN BARRY
HOW many of the things that you do depend on your sight? How many words, in any
language you can name, are concerned with vision and light? Words referring to
sight are built in and integral to the way we give meaning to the world. Consider
then how different your life would be if you gradually lost your sight to the
point of total blindness.
Knighton has first-hand experience of slow and inevitable sight
deterioration and has written a book on his life which gives
us access to the world of the visually disadvantaged. He would
far back as he could remember, Ryan was always the clumsy kid.
Growing up in Langley, British Columbia, Canada, with his parents
and siblings, he had a normal enough childhood, occasionally
punctuated by inexplicable gaps in his interactions with the
his doctor diagnosed retinitis pigmentosa, a degenerative and
untreatable eye disease, on the day of his 18th birthday, many
episodes in his life suddenly became understandable – the
strange things that happened on his childhood paper route;
the inexplicable accidents at his first job; his woeful driving
record and those disappearing trousers, among many other things.
Knighton himself says, it is difficult to not use words like "hindsight" in
a situation like his.
he was also blessed with a love of words and a scrupulous honesty.
This book is a rigorous self-examination by a man undergoing
a reluctant transformation, written by someone who understands
how to tell a story. It is as honest an account of a modern
life, with all its joys and tragedies, humour, foibles and
insights, as you are likely to find.
back to reviews