Top positive review
3 people found this helpful
When everyone goes blind and society breaks down
on 21 July 2016
A wonderfully written and extremely different book. For a start no one has a name. Everyone is described as - for example, the first blind man, the first blind man's wife, the doctor's wife. As in The Day of the Triffids people are struck blind, but this book is far more savage and we only encounter one person who can see - the doctor's wife. When the epidemic of blindness spreads she struggles to keep a small group of people alive when they are interned. The epidemic takes over the whole city with horrific consequences, anarchy, murder, feral gangs, rape and starvation follow in a very short time.
The book also has minimal punctuation so that it takes a while to get used to and also sometimes to work out who is speaking. But it works and in fact the writing is wonderful. It could be read on many different levels, as an allegory or parable, there are many biblical references throughout, blindness of course is often used as a metaphor. There is one startling scene with the doctor, his wife and a prostitute which makes one think of the situation being an eye opener - the doctor's wifes' eyes were opened to her husband - I think if I re-read the book I would see many more allusions and themes such as redemption, human relationships, and altruisim versus selfishness.
Of course the book is harrowing, in a way I was putting off reading it, but ultimately it is uplifting and I am intrigued to know there is a sequel, Seeing. Blindness was made into a film in 2007.