“Wink,” by Rob Harrell, wasn’t as good as it seemed. 

“Wink” is about a boy named Ross, who has a rare form of eye cancer. Because of this, Ross has to wear eye goop, a hat, and deal with an eye that’s “winking”.

He has a lot going on. One friend, Isaac, hasn’t been talking or hanging out with him ever since Ross was diagnosed with cancer. 

He also has a crush, Sarah, and he wants to show her, and everyone else at the school, that he’s not just the “cancer kid.” But how is he going to do this when that’s all people can see, literally, with a scar and a winky eye?

He has to figure out how he’s going to do this, and decides to start playing the guitar. He picks it up quickly, and it helps him to process what’s going on in his life. 

So, when the talent show comes around, Ross has an idea. He could just stay hidden in the shadows and try to be normal, or he could show the school who he really is. 

I didn’t like this book as much as I thought I would. I felt like it was geared more towards boys. I also thought it was a little too dramatic, because there was just so much on his plate that it was almost unrealistic. 

I gave this book to my brother to read, and he liked it a lot more than I did. He agreed with me on the unnecessary drama. He did really like the Batpig comics that this book includes. 

Something to know about this book is that it goes from the past to the present a lot. This is confusing, and not done well. It took me until the end of the book to fully understand the story’s timeline. 

This novel also uses some “gateway” language, and while it’s true that many middle schoolers do curse, it was a little overused and got old fast.  

I could see how this book had the potential to be really heartwarming while at the same time being funny, but because of the language and drama, and the “boy” tone, it didn’t really accomplish that. 

I wouldn’t suggest getting this book because of the drama, confusing timeline, and overused foul language.