Read Are You Seeing Me? by Darren Groth Online

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This road trip will have earth-shattering consequences . . . Twins Justine and Perry are about to embark on the road trip of a lifetime in the Pacific Northwest. It's been a year since they watched their dad lose his battle with cancer. Now, at only nineteen, Justine is the sole carer for her disabled brother. But with Perry having been accepted into an assisted-living resThis road trip will have earth-shattering consequences . . . Twins Justine and Perry are about to embark on the road trip of a lifetime in the Pacific Northwest. It's been a year since they watched their dad lose his battle with cancer. Now, at only nineteen, Justine is the sole carer for her disabled brother. But with Perry having been accepted into an assisted-living residence, their reliance on each other is set to shift. Before they go their separate ways, they're seeking to create the perfect memory. For Perry, the trip is a glorious celebration of his favourite things: mythical sea monsters, Jackie Chan movies and the study of earthquakes. For Justine, it's a chance to reconcile the decision to ‘free' her twin, to see who she is without her boyfriend, Marc – and to offer their mother the chance to atone for past wrongs. But the instability that has shaped their lives will not subside, and the seismic event that Perry forewarned threatens to reduce their worlds to rubble......

Title : Are You Seeing Me?
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780857984739
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 274 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Are You Seeing Me? Reviews

  • Saleh MoonWalker
    2019-04-02 19:19

    بعد از مرگ پدرشون، دوقلو های نوزده ساله، به نام های جاستین و پری ریچر، تصمیم میگیرن که از استرالیا خارج بشن تا بتونن دوباره کنار مادرشون که ترکشون کرده بود، برگردن.شخصیت این دو نفر تقریبا شبیه همه، و توصیفات جالبی داره که نشون میده استرس و فروپاشی روانی چطور در نوجوان ها رخ میده. پری، اوتیست هستش و تا قبل از این اتفاق پدرشون شرایط مناسبی براشون ایجاد کرده بود تا به راحتی بتونن زندگی کنن اما حالا شرایط تغییر کرده.نکته جالبی که بهش اشاره میکنه اینه که با تمام پیش بینی ها و آماده بودن برای اتفاقات باز هم نمیشه کامل از مشکل جلوگیری کرد. داستان سیر جالبی طی میکنه و کمی هم از داستان پدر رو به نمایش میذاره. نشون میده که با اینکه پدر خوبی بوده اما همسر مناسبی نبوده. نثر کتاب ساده س و سرعت پیشروی خوبی داره.

  • Cait (Paper Fury)
    2019-04-19 19:25

    Oh how I love this book.It was one of those impulse-clicks on Netgalley. I swore I'd stop doing them...but then I turn up gems like these that I would never have thought to try! This book is so so special and how even am I going to explain it?First of all, it's about Australian twins, Justine and Perry, going for a holiday in Canada.Bring out the moose, eh? (I know, that's a vicious Canadian stereotype, but if it makes the Canadians feel any better when I think "moose" I think "Supernatural" not Canada. But I'm digressing, aren't I?) Books about Australians are awesome, especially when they are fair dinkum Aussies. They use words like "sticky-beak" and talk about "Possum Magic". IT IS SO AUSTRALIAN. The humour is very Australian too. Lots of sarcasm. Lots of dry humour. Like Justine's response to people staring at Perry:"You've never seen a disabled person and their homicidal carer before?"I'm just snickering over here, don't mind me.I do scowl at the blurb because...it's a "holiday" not a "roadtrip".I'm not fond of misleading blurbs, but this one IS a doozy. Look, they go in an airplane across the ocean to Canada. Yes, there is a bit of driving. But one does not call a flight to Canada a roadtrip. No.Let's talk about the characters, eh?(See what I did there? With the "eh"? Okay...forget it.) I absolutely adored both Justine and Perry! It's dual narrated, but in quite BIG sections. So you really get comfortable inside Justine's POV...and then it'll switch to Perry. I think that helped me get to know them sufficiently before it moosed to a different viewpoint.They're twins, their 19, their dad has just died, and they're taking a holiday before some Big Life Changes happen. (That's all in the blurb, so not spoilers.) Perry has a brain condition, which I suspect is basically Autism. When it flipped to his POV, it was so excellently written! His voice is completely different to Justine's. Long sentences. Imaginary scenarios. And he didn't explain anything. He just narrated like it was happening in his head.Like they went out to eat and Justine orders, and Perry starts thinking about food poisoning and imagining everyone in the restaurant dying. But he's saying everyone is dying around him. As the reader we have to pick out what's real and what's not real. I loved that.Justine is also all types of awesome. She's caring. She's stressed. And she's capable. None of this clingy desperate lovesick YA that I keep falling into. This is real and kind of sad, but beautiful.Let's moose over to talk about why the author wrote this.Like the stalker-reader I am, I snuck onto the author's website and read his blog. He actually has twins himself, and he wrote this book for his daughter. His son has autism. I don't think he wrote this book about them (since they're not yet teens), but he wrote it for them, and HOLD MY MOOSE (meese?) that's just incredibly sweet. It made me trust the book 100% too, because the author knows what he's talking about.The writing and characters are just fabulous. What more do I want in a book?I wouldn't call it the most original thing I've ever read. But it's enjoyable. It's sweet. There are some serious NO STAHP moments, and then I just wanted to hug my kindle.But if nothing else, you want to read this for the Aussie humour, okay? Okay.(This is Justine imagining HOW they should be greeted arriving in Vancouver...so her little dry interior monologue:)Yes, go straight through. No need for passports. We love Australians here in Canada...We know you've had a rough flight. We know you've had a rough LIFE. All those sharks and snakes and rugby players trying to kill you every moment of the day. Far be it from us to make things more difficult. And, here, have this leftover gold medal from the Vancouver Winter Olympics. You've earned it. I died at the "sharks and snakes and rugby players trying to kill you"...Welcome to 'Straya MATE.This is like 4.5 (except Goodreads doesn't allow half stars so I don't usually bother with them). I LOVED it, but it was a bit predictable. It was happy/sad and bitter/sweet and I loved viewing the world through Perry AND Justine's eyes. And also I got to make lame moose jokes, so that's fun, eh?

  • Catherine ♡
    2019-04-08 19:09

    Actual Rating: 4.0I'm a single dad and I got twin kids, I said. One who's seventeen going on thirty, one who's seventeen going on ten.That. That was the line that hit me.This story was beautiful, but in that fuzzy, cozy kind of way, with a sprinkle of heartbreak thrown in. Are You Seeing Me? is about twins, Justine and Perry. Perry's got a brain condition that results in what people call "inappropriate behaviors", and when their father passes away, Justine becomes his main caretaker. But then Perry is accepted at an assisted-living residence, and the two of them decide to go away on a road trip, before the goodbye. But for the twenty-year-old girl who wants to give her mother a second chance and her twin brother, who loves earthquakes, Jackie Chan, and Ogopogo, the Canadian lake monster, the world is going to continue being a little shaky.The plot was very calm, I'd say. A lot of the progression happened emotionally, which really is the most important part. Although there was nothing really surprising, it was kind of like a cozy little adventure.The book is also written in dual perspectives (Justine and Perry) that switched in chunks, but their voices were each so unique that I had no trouble differentiating between who was who. I especially loved reading Perry's voice because it helped me understand what it would be like inside the mind of someone with a mental disability. I loved the abstract writing style, and though it made the climax scene a little confusing, I understood the reasoning behind it and a reread of the scene really cleared things up and added to the story's realism.The writing style was definitely a very strong part of this book. There were some journals written by the dad that were scattered throughout the book, and I also really enjoyed the extra depth they brought to the story.Overall, this book was definitely a treasure, and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to read such an eye-opening story.

  • Catherine ♡
    2019-04-13 13:23

    Actual Rating: 4.0I'm a single dad and I got twin kids, I said. One who's seventeen going on thirty, one who's seventeen going on ten.That. That was the line that hit me.This story was beautiful, but in that fuzzy, cozy kind of way, with a sprinkle of heartbreak thrown in. Are You Seeing Me? is about twins, Justine and Perry. Perry's got a brain condition that results in what people call "inappropriate behaviors", and when their father passes away, Justine becomes his main caretaker. But then Perry is accepted at an assisted-living residence, and the two of them decide to go away on a road trip, before the goodbye. But for the twenty-year-old girl who wants to give her mother a second chance and her twin brother, who loves earthquakes, Jackie Chan, and Ogopogo, the Canadian lake monster, the world is going to continue being a little shaky.The plot was very calm, I'd say. A lot of the progression happened emotionally, which really is the most important part. Although there was nothing really surprising, it was kind of like a cozy little adventure.The book is also written in dual perspectives (Justine and Perry) that switched in chunks, but their voices were each so unique that I had no trouble differentiating between who was who. I especially loved reading Perry's voice because it helped me understand what it would be like inside the mind of someone with a mental disability. I loved the abstract writing style, and though it made the climax scene a little confusing, I understood the reasoning behind it and a reread of the scene really cleared things up and added to the story's realism.The writing style was definitely a very strong part of this book. There were some journals written by the dad that were scattered throughout the book, and I also really enjoyed the extra depth they brought to the story.Overall, this book was definitely a treasure, and I'm so glad I had the opportunity to read such an eye-opening story.

  • Figgy
    2019-03-31 19:25

    'Are you making a mountain out of a mould hill, Just Jeans?''No. Are you seeing me, Pez?''Yes, but I honestly think this is a mould hill.' 'It's not.''A tiny little hill covered in mould.'Meet Perry and Justine. He has a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people - mixing with them and communicating with them - and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours. She's 'neurotypical'. The rest of this review can be found here!

  • Christine Bongers
    2019-04-19 18:10

    Funny and profoundly moving, this is a book everyone should read. It's about seeing the person in all their unique glory, not just the disability, or even worse, the unhelpful label. In nineteen-year-old twins, Perry and Justine, Groth has created two unique voices that will stay with me forever. And as for their dad, Dan, oh man, his voice from the grave just about killed me. A celebration of family, life, love and loss. Loved. Loved. Loved. This. Are you hearing me? Six stars. At least.

  • Danielle
    2019-04-01 16:06

    This book was wonderful. Here's a quick impressionistic list of reasons why:1) it's beautifully-written. From the get-go, the prose is lovely -- gentle, literary, but never over-written. Here's a taste, from page 37, as twins Perry and Justine step out into the Canadian sun for the first time and stop to take a selfie: "The snap is more than money -- it is perfect. Our eyes are ablaze. Our grins are starlight. Despite the fifteen-hour flight and lack of sleep, we have been captured at some sort of fission point; the release permitting the very best of our past, present and future to burst through for a nanosecond. As I stand there, spellbound, breathing the gluggy Vancouver air, the photograph materialises in other places, other times..." On top of that, it's a good story. It's possible to have great words but a bad tale; happily, this is not one of those books. It works.2) it's contemporary YA literature that manages to avoid cliches and tropey-ness. First off, there's not a love triangle in sight. In fact, there's only a glimmer of romance and what's there is honest, real, and not composed of pink-tinged warm fuzzies. Secondly, there's very little space given to what the characters look like or wear, or their appraisal of others' appearances. The story isn't about school or work or rivalry or the boy next door (none of which are wrong, all of which have been done a thousand times before). Finally, at 19 years old and functioning as the primary carer for her brother, Justine is the exact definition of YA: a young adult. She is wrestling with responsibility, decisions about the future, money, the way others perceive her brother's disability. Her experience is one people will relate to no matter what their age.3) Perry and Justine live in Brisbane, and there is something so I-don't-know-what-it-is-but-I-like-it about reading a book with links to a place you know and love. It's a feeling akin to belonging, or even ownership. Having looked out onto the same bridge, same river, same bookstore cafe that the characters are also seeing makes their story that much more real, more tangible. And for me, it brought up all my fledgling feelings of Queensland patriotism, which have taken eight years to generate.4) it punched me right in the heart. My little brother has down syndrome, so I get what it's like to walk through life with an answer waiting on the edge of your tongue to explain away anything that people find unusual or unsettling. There's 17 years and three other siblings between me and him, but the others all live away and I live right next door, and that feeling of the two of us out to face the world is something I can relate to deeply. Sometimes I have dreams of disasters happening and the one person I always try to find in the midst of the tsunami or the earthquake, the one person I have to reach to make sure he's safe, is my brother Tain. I could understand Justine's fierce love for her brother because I feel that for my brother, too. At the same time, I felt a little envious of these characters. Perry -- who narrates part of the story -- is articulate and expressive. He's able to explain himself clearly. He has defined tastes and interests, special skill sets, and knowledge that can impress others. There is no external sign of his disability. Though people might be startled or feel uncomfortable because of the way Perry responds to situations, he can also blend into a crowd. No one can look at him and, simply by evaluating his physical characteristics, make assumptions about his abilities, his personality, his worth. I envied that in Perry and wished momentarily for some of those things for my brother. This was a new experience for me, but at the same time it reminded me that things always look different from the outside looking in.5) it inspired me to love better, which is one of the best things a book can do.

  • Shelleyrae at Book'd Out
    2019-04-19 14:25

    A heartwarming and touching novel from Darren Groth, Are You Seeing Me? is a story about siblings, family, love and understanding.After losing their father to cancer just weeks shy of their eighteenth birthdays, nineteen year old twins, Justine and Perry, are heading to Canada for a holiday of a lifetime. Perry is hoping to find proof of the Ogopogo's existence and visit the area where his favourite Jackie Chan movie, Rumble in the Bronx, was filmed. Justine, anxious about their impending separation, is determined this will be an adventure Perry won't forget. Neither are fully prepared for the seismic events that will rock their world.Are you Seeing Me? is told, with compassion and insight, from the alternating first person viewpoints of Justine and Perry. Justine, older than Perry by three minutes, is 'neurotypical', Perry, as Justine is often forced to explain, "...has a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people – mixing with them and communicating with them – and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours". Since the death of their father, Justine has been Perry's sole carer, their mother having abandoned the family when the twins were only four. The unusual sibling dynamic is wonderfully portrayed, 'Just Jeans' and 'Pez' have a loving bond. Shortly before his death, the twins father made arrangements for Perry to move to an assisted living community, but Justine is struggling to accept the decision despite acknowledging Perry's right to independence and Perry is determined to hide his reluctance to leave his sister in the belief that doing so will free her to live the life she put on hold to care for him. I thought the twins were realistically depicted, and very likeable, characters. Justine is mature and capable but not perfect. Perry's perspective is believable, though occasionally confusing given his occasional slip into an imaginary narrative. There aren't any real surprises in the plot of Are You Seeing Me?, but the story is well paced and believable. It is well written with natural dialogue and I particularly enjoyed the author's dry sense of humour.Are You Seeing Me? is an engaging read, appropriate for both mature YA readers and adults. FYI: Groth dedicates this novel to his own daughter who, like Justine, is neurotypical while her twin brother, like Perry, has been diagnosed with autism (whom he honoured in Kindling)

  • Casey
    2019-04-09 21:33

    Are you seeing me is an amazing story of twins, a Brother and Sister on one last adventure together before one moves out of the family home. Perry and Justine are 18 year old Twins who lost their father and soul carer. Perry and Justine leave Australia to go on a roadtrip/holiday from Canada to America in search for the Ogopogo which is Perry's favourite animal/myth. The Ogopogo is like a Sea Monster. Perry also loves information about Earthquakes and measures the ground with a seismograph for tremors. The Earthquakes and talk of the earth becoming unstable is definitely a perfect example of what autism is like at times. This book is fun, heartfelt, sad, and insightful. If you're looking for a great roadtrip, finding yourself, positive sibling relationships, and some great Aussie humor than book this is for you. This book is in dual perspective and Justine and Perry's voices were both fantastically written and completely different. Reading split perspective I usually have a favourite but I loved Perry and Justine's voices equally. Perry has what Justine calls a "brain condition" basically every time a rude ass person decided they can stare and act rudely to Perry Justine describes his Autism in the simplest way to outsiders. Some of the descriptions of staring and the struggle to eat out are so real feeling. I count Are You Seeing Me to be #OwnVoices no it's not written directly by someone with Autism but it is written by a father who has a child with ASD. My brother has Autism and I just related to Justine on such a huge level, to her anger, to her understanding, to her annoyedness with others, to her love for her brother. If you're looking for a book with positive Autism/ Neurodiverse rep I definitely recommend this. Having Autism especially being higher on the spectrum can mean you can't put your story on paper so I appreciate Darren Groth for writing an amazing story that touched my heart and made me think about my own family.

  • Frances
    2019-04-14 13:33

    Whilst reading in Perry’s perspective, it was interesting to experience a little bit of what it would be like to live with a brain condition, however I don’t think the story’s way of portraying it was very realistic. Of course, this being a fictional narrative it wouldn’t be totally realistic, but when Perry could feel when events were going to happen, such as the motorbike tumble, or earlier on about how, as a child, he could feel the earth shaking- I didn’t know if I could take it seriously. Do some people with brain conditions really have these kind of abilities? Then again, it could be that Groth was trying to point out the mysteries behind those with brain conditions and how we cannot always explain what is ‘wrong’ with people so the best we can do is just to accept them as their unique selves.I had gotten confused with the anticipation of a seismic event that Perry kept touching on, and I thought that all the earthquake fears was a metaphor for the future ‘shake-up’ that the duo would be experiencing at the return of their mother. Then the climactic earthquake actually occurred and I had to read back to see if it was actually happening or if it was just a figment of Perry’s imagination. To quote a fellow reader, when Jackie Chan got involved and all the action to get Justine to the hospital occurred, it was quite ‘unbelievable’- as in improbable, I believe, for it to have actually happened. The ending was also a bit odd for me. I would have liked Perry to have established his own independence by going to Fair Go, but then again he did develop independence in other ways as well. I just feel like the protagonists are in the same situation as the beginning except for a few minor adjustments such as the mother returning into the picture as well as Marc, the loving boyfriend. I guess there are other, more sanguine ways of seeing it and I am very willing to hear them out to discuss them.

  • Tehani
    2019-04-19 17:16

    This was a challenging yet somehow gentle and thoughtful journey, a story about family, difference and confrontation that manages to both inform and engage without preaching or pandering.Justine hasn't had the easiest time. Her mum dumped them when she was young, her twin brother has a brain condition, and now her dad has died from cancer. While I'm often frustrated by books (particularly YA books) that hit the protagonist with all the "issues", this one manages to strike just the right balance. Despite (or perhaps partly because of) the curve-balls life has thrown her, Justine is smart, pretty well-adjusted, and holds a maturity beyond her years. And now she and her brother Perry are off on an adventure, to explore and, perhaps, to say goodbye. Groth weaves a skillful narrative here, drawing together threads from the past and present in a direct manner that offers an amazing insight into the world of not only Justine, but her brother as well. As readers, we are offered the opportunity to understand Perry and his disability, as well as Justine and the responsibility she shoulders. The writing had me in tears at times, but smiling at others, as Justine's fears and frustrations leapt off the page.Highly recommended for readers young and old, and particularly for those seeking to explore and understand difference, grief, and the love of a family.Thank you to the publisher for this review copy.

  • Jess ❈Harbinger of Blood-Soaked Rainbows❈
    2019-04-24 19:28

    I just noticed this one hanging out in my recommendations. I have decided I want to read it because:1. It has an awesome cover.2. TWINS!3. One of the characters has a love of mythical sea monsters and Jackie Chan movies.4. The cover alludes to earthquakes and a kraken. I haven't read anything about earthquakes AND a kraken before.*tosses it onto the [increasingly unrealistic] pile*

  • Bonnie Ferrante
    2019-04-15 19:04

    If you enjoyed The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time or House Rules you will love this book. Told from the points of view of Perry and his sister and caretaker Justine, the book focuses on the strong bond between siblings whose mother abandoned them as children and whose father recently died. I don't want to talk too much about the story. It is basically about relationships and how we assume things about the other person that may or may not be true.Both the major characters are engaging, complex, and selfless. I read this book in one night as I could not put it down. I loved both Justine and Perry. Both have big hearts, protective natures, a sense of humor, and courage.We are never exactly told that Perry has autism but Justine repeats a speech that sums up his challenging life in a single paragraph, "My brother has a brain condition that causes him to feel anxious or different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people – mixing with them and communicating with them – and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviors. I appreciate your understanding and patience." It sounds so simple, but it is incredibly complex. Perry struggles with all his strength to behave appropriately and to be a good brother in spite of his brain condition.When Justine takes Perry all the way from Australia to Canada, her brother must cope with sensory overload, the vastly unfamiliar, and breaks in his routine. Her reason for doing this opens a whole new Pandora's box.This is a story about sibling love, a broken family, redemption, sacrifice, and devotion. This book was a well deserving Governor General Award Finalist. A beautiful book that will seize your emotions and tug at your heart. I highly recommend it for all ages.

  • Kim
    2019-04-05 16:04

    When I started this book I didn’t know much about it, other than that the main characters were twins - one with a brain condition - and that there was a review in the paper that recommended the story to Melina Marchetta fans. I was already sold. Throw around comparisons to my favourite Aussie YA author and I’m pretty much guaranteed to pick the book up. But even without that comparison, I would have loved this book. The powerful, emotional pull of siblings supporting each other through thick and thin, the fun adventure of exploring a new landscape, and the throw-backs to the past and the speculation of the future. This is what a contemporary YA novel is supposed to be – spot on writing and storytelling. Are You See Me? is a story about the final adventure between two twins before epic changes fall on their lives. A trip to find a mystical creature, visit the grave site of Bruce Lee and the discovery heroes in unlikely places. It is a journey of discovering who has you back, always; and finding out who you are on your own too. I have this thing about Twin novels. I seem to be reading a few of them lately. I don’t know if it’s a new trend, or I just haven’t noticed them in the past, but they keep popping up on my radar and I feel a weird connection to them before opening because of my own twin status. It was harder to relate to this twin pairing though, because I have no brothers! The whole male-female concept is a tad foreign to me. But I loved this pairing. Justine and Perry are 19 year old twins who have faced upheavals and struggles their entire lives, with one constant: each other. No matter what life has thrown their way, they help each other stand strong. This alone would have made me love them, but add in the fact that this is their last trip together before more life changing events and it makes every scene seem more precious. Perry has a brain condition, a disability that makes him anxious and upset around new people and situations. But don't let that sway any of your thoughts, because this teenage boy proves to be more capable, caring and selfless than any other character in this book. The way Groth captures his abilities and feelings is incredible and makes you want to jump through the pages and give him big hugs (although, make sure you ask first, because a random hug from a stranger might make Perry upset!)I love books about siblings – there’s something fantastic about knowing you have someone to count on, and when an author portrays that to a T, I find myself loving the book more than I thought possible. Are You Seeing Me? is that sort of book. One of the main themes throughout this book was the love that can be found through your sibling. Justine tries so hard to make this trip a final fun journey for Perry before he moves into a care facility – something she doesn’t want him to do, but he chose this change for their lives – because she wants him to have a lasting memory of their time together. While on the flip side, Perry is trying just as hard to show Justine that she can be free of his extra trouble making – even though he really doesn’t want to leave her, he just wants to show her she doesn’t need to be tied to him, and if it means moving into a home away from Justine, he’ll do it. Because he loves her. As a reader, we get to see both sides of this through the split POV sections of the book. For me, this made me think of a cross between Jennifer Brown’s Perfect Escape (with the road-trip-with-the-OCD-brother) and Marcus Sedgwick’s She Is Not Invisible (with the blind-girl-showing-she’s-not-an-invalid). But this was better, because we you got see both sides right there, not just the ‘normal’ or ‘disabled’ side alone. I loved being in both Justine and Perry’s minds. And as a bonus, we get a look at their childhood struggles and successes through sporadic journal entries from their late father. (Warning: these will make you cry!)I think my only issue with this book was with Leonie – Justine and Perry’s mother. A mother who was fed up with not getting any attention from her loving husband – who was being the best dad to his twins – a mother who up and left when Perry and Justine were four; a mother who reached out only to her daughter, 12 years later, and who struggled to accept Perry’s challenges. This issue was not so much with how her character was presented, because it worked for the story; but oh how she frustrated me, wanting back into their lives after ditching them without contact for years and years. Perry and Justine are way more forgiving than I would have been. Maybe it’s because I have such fantastic parents though, I can’t understand that need for them to come back into my life since my own parents haven’t left; but I thought she was a real piece of work. Are You Seeing Me? is an incredibly emotional read, and a powerful look at struggling siblings showing just how strong they are alone – but also how they’re even stronger knowing they’ve always got each other. 4.5/5 stars

  • Nicole - Too Weird To Live, Too Rare To Die-
    2019-03-29 14:15

    It’s been more than a year since nineteen-year-old twins Justine and Perry watched their dad lose his battle with cancer, leaving Justine as the sole caregiver for her brother, who is prone to what Justine calls “inappropriate behaviors.” But now their reliance on each other is set to shift. Before they go their separate ways, the twins want to create the perfect memory.For Perry, the trip is a glorious celebration of his favorite things: mythical sea monsters, Jackie Chan movies and the study of earthquakes. For Justine, it’s a chance to “free” her twin, to see who she is without her boyfriend, and to offer their mother the chance to atone for past wrongs. 5 -Justine and Perry are the lovable twins - starsI have to say in the beginning I was nervous to read this book in the beginning cause I didn't know how it would deal with autism or people with autism, but surprisingly it dealt with it very well and made the characters more lovable each time it was there point of views. I have never heard of this author before or any of his stories before so it was the first time reading his writing style and how he would write disability and intertwine it. I think he did an excellent job with this kind of area and how it seemed so real than you find out that one of his kid has autism and that's how he got all of his facts based on autism and how it works and everything. It was fun reading about Justine and Perry, their relationship with each other and how they help each other out in some ways but they have their own personality and their own unique style to everything but come together when they need each other the most.Justine, is the caregiver of her brother and also a sister, after there father pasted of cancer. She is trying to deal with taking care of her brother and having a life of her own, with a boyfriend also. She wants Perry to have the best he could ever get, so she thinks of one very last trip to create the perfect memory before they go their separate ways but her dad had already had plan for Perry, if he was too much to handle for her. They decide to do all the stuff that they love to do together but incorporate stuff that Perry likes also. They go to Vancouver and have there little adventure there but everything is not always sugar plums and fairy dust. I really liked Justine because I feel like that's how every human should treat a disabled person like there a human being and not a circus animal like how normally people would treat disabled people and think there not important. She cares about her brother so much and loves him and doesn't want him to leave when they go back home but it's his decision if he wants to stay with her or to leave. Their relationship is so cute because they try everything to make each other happy as much as they can but also learn a lot from each other and that's what make this book different from the rest.Perry, I have to say I learned a lot from Perry about earthquakes and mythical monsters and how he deals with life all together. It's very different in a mind of a disabled person but you get the sense of how they deal with life all together and face the obstacles and how they can accomplish them by being independent and trying everything themselves. Perry had a plan from the beginning to set his sister free from taking care of him and living a normal life on her own, but what he doesn't know is that his sister wants him to stay so much because with each other they make their life complete and make each other happy. Perry is the most sweetest person you will ever meet or read about because he does everything to help his sister no matter what the situation is. The thing that surprised me the most was his plan in Seattle to leave his sister so he can be happy but than I felt so proud of him that he could do all of this and not have a panic attack, which is a big step for him and I loved that he could do that on his own.This book, taught me a lot of things about earthquakes, about family, love and learning how to be yourself and forgive and forget. It teaches a lot of lesson that you remember in life.

  • Rebecca
    2019-04-13 20:33

    This review is also on my blogActual Rating: 4.5I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest reviewIn a nutshell: Are You Seeing Me is a beautifully written novel about love and family that is both funny and moving.I knew very little about this book when I went into it, other than there was a trip to Canada involved and one of the characters had a disability. I've read a shameful number of books with protagonists like Perry and among other things, Are You Seeing Me has inspired me to look into more of them. I gained a new understanding and appreciation for not only the way the minds of people with autism work, through Perry's narration, but how others respond to it, through the other characters. It was particularly interesting when I read the author's bio that he has twins himself - his daughter is 'neurotypical' and his son was diagnosed with autism. It is something I've had very little experience with and knowledge of myself, but I recognise how realistic the disability is represented in Are You Seeing Me. I liked that Perry was shown to be more than his disability.The two perspectives in the book worked really well - it was effective to be able to read from both of Justine and Perry's perspectives. Justine and Perry both had very unique and distinctive voices, and I loved both of them as characters. I also appreciated their relationship. Justine needed Perry just as much as he needed her. Perry's POV was great in the way that the reader could gain a sense of what was going through his head. I also really liked Justine's chapters and it was great to explore the implications of caring for her brother, along with other aspects of her life. In general, the characters were well-written. They - particularly Justine - were written in a raw and realistic way and I really connected with them. I also really liked the diary excerpts that were included from their father. The writing style for Are You Seeing Me is simple yet beautiful. The book isn't overly long and it is a nice, quick read. It's a very profound and moving book and I loved its focus on family. It's also a lot of fun. I really enjoyed the dry Aussie humour. There was a nice Australian feel to it in general. The little Riverbend Books reference was particularly great. I enjoy road trip/holiday kind of books that have different locations as a setting so I appreciated that aspect of the book too.Are You Seeing Me is a wonderful little read that I really enjoyed. It's the kind of book, similiar to ones like Wonder, that I would recommend to anyone. Specifically, I'd recommend it to people wanting a fun yet meaningful YA contemporary read, particularly the kind that deals with disability and family.

  • Miffy
    2019-04-01 14:06

    This is a gentle tale of a family overflowing with love. Justine and Perry are sister and brother - twins. They have their fair share of problems. Mum left years ago. Dad, who has been a sole parent for most of the twins' lives, contracts cancer just before their 18th birthday. Perry has 'single-minded boy syndrome'. And Justine is Perry's main carer. There's plenty going on in this novel.The relationship between 'Just Jeans' and 'Pez' is equal in love, but not in responsibility. "Perry has a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people - mixing with them and communicating with them - and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours. I appreciate your understanding and patience." Justine understands that it's now her job to look out for Perry, but she has no idea of the toll that it has taken on her life so far, and how it will affect her future.Perry seems to be living in his own world of being an 'expert ear basher'. His obsessions are Jackie Chan movies, earthquakes, and Ogopogo. But as the story progresses we see that Perry understands more than Justine knows, and he is able to sense seismic changes - in both the earth and the world around him.The dual threads of this novel are very well done. Each sibling has a clear voice, and the nuances of their personalities shines through. Their relationship is realistic and their journey believable. Initially, I felt disappointed in the conclusion, but as I've thought over the story and the characters since finishing the book a few days ago I've realised that the ending was actually perfectly natural.A very enjoyable read.

  • Rajaa Vora
    2019-03-28 18:13

    When i first started this book i wondered "how can/would this end?" To me it seemed that this book was mainly just a book about the character's, but it was so much more. The beginning starts with Justine's POV and it goes back and forth throughout the book. At the beginning it was mainly just introducing the character's and their stories and throughout the book it was mainly character development, which i really loved. I love how Perry, Justine, and their mom all develop and grow and find peace. The ending just added to that growth. I will admit though that i was not expecting that and at first i believed it was all in Perry's head. But it turned out to be real and the way that Perry handled that situation made me so proud of him. I truly love Perry's character and the way he wants to be the hero and set Justine free, but at the end he learns that it's ok--he's ok--and that he's not a burden on Justine. And he saves the day--or rather Jackie Chan saves the day. Overall i love the character development and the ending of this book. Five stars from me ^_^

  • Stephanie White
    2019-04-12 21:24

    I hadn't heard anything about this book so I went in completely blind and in this case that was the best thing I could've done! This book was a beautifully written, beautifully told story about Justine and Perry, twins who have lost their father and are embarking on a trip together. I loved their relationship, it seemed real and deep. I also loved the excerpts from the journal that the father left for Justine, they added context for the characters motivations and were heart warming and heart breaking at the same time. I loved Perry's point of view and found it offered such insight to his condition. Overall I found this to be a funny, realistic, young adult novel and would highly recommend it to anyone who reads going adult, with a warning that it may cause tears!!

  • EmilyViolet
    2019-04-16 14:04

    I really enjoyed most of this novel.The characters are well developed and there is a great storyline with a lot going on that you wouldn't really expect considering this is quite a short book.The reason I can't give 'Are You Seeing Me?' a higher rating is because the apex of the plot doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Granted, it is from Perry's point of view and the abstract way it is written is because that is how he is seeing it happen, but it still left me confused.Besides that, this is a lovely little novel with some relevant, important lessons behind the text.3 stars

  • Monika
    2019-03-29 17:24

    This book was recommended to me by my former high school librarian and I'm glad I had a chance to pick it up. I don't frequently read books about mental health but I appreciated the dual perspective that this story provided. It was fascinating to see the world from Perry's eyes and it was fun to learn facts about the city that I grew up in as well as the city I will be getting married in! I feel compelled to retrace Perry and Justine's trip just to better understand them.

  • Camille White
    2019-03-26 19:12

    I didn't connect with this book at all. Interesting concept of twins taking care of each other in wake of their fathers death (one with autism) but aside from the dad, none of the characters really came to life in my opinion.

  • Rob Slaven
    2019-04-09 20:27

    I received this book free for review from LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review. Despite the privilege of receiving a free book, I’m absolutely candid about it below because I believe authors and readers will benefit most from honest reviews rather than vacuous 5-star reviews.The tiny nutshell view on this book is that it's the story of a family trying to find stable emotional ground again after the death of their single-parent father when one member, Perry, the son, is autistic and has to depend on his sister for many of his daily needs. The narrative is constructed from a dual viewpoint so you get half of the story from the daughter's viewpoint and half from the autistic son's.Firstly, this is a YA novel so I give it a different critical eye than I would an adult novel. I ask myself three simple questions. The first of which is: "Is there any reason I wouldn't want my kids to read this novel?" In that regard, there is a fair amount of profanity but it's nothing over the top. There is brief mention of sex but nothing graphic. The book is devoid of drug use and has only minimal violence and it's the sort that kids are exposed to in action movies: car chases and the like. So on that basis I have no negative concerns about the book.Secondly, I ponder whether there's anything in the book that would make me WANT my kids to read it. In this case, there are a few positive messages about reconciliation and coping with situations and perhaps understanding a bit more about how the autistic mind operates. These themes don't leap out and club you over the head but they do represent an example of a family in a tough situation making it through to the other side so children dealing with loss might find it helpful. The book isn't terribly strong in this regard but its themes are at least present.Thirdly, and somewhat less importantly, will the kids enjoy reading it? In this case, I'm not really convinced. As an adult I found it interesting from more of an intellectual standpoint, getting inside the head of this autistic child and seeing their family dynamic. Unless the YA in question knows a person in this situation I think it might be difficult to engage their interest completely. So to the positive, the book is clean and has some weak lessons to teach. I was reasonably entertained and zoomed through this title in a few hours so it's a quick trip to be sure. The family dynamics are well rendered and the characters vivid (as you'd expect since the author lives with an autistic son).To the negative, the action does seem to flag about three quarters of the way through as evidenced by my sudden nap at about that point. Also, some of the segments from the autistic son's point of view leave the reader rather wondering what exactly happened. His perception of events (or retelling of them) is sometimes warped by his autism so some part of the real story is rather unknowable.In summary, this is a solid afternoon read and safe for the kiddos but it's not on my "if you only read one book this month" list exactly.PS: I hope my review was helpful. If it was not, then please let me know what I left out that you’d want to know. I always aim to improve.

  • Lauredhel
    2019-04-14 21:17

    Perry is getting ready to explore his own independence moving out of home in an assisted-living situation, but first wants to travel to see if his beloved sea monster is real, and to see where the Jackie Chan movies were filmed. Justine is neurotypical and stressed, constantly worrying about defending Perry from strangers who judge his “inappropriate behaviours”, and about future responsibilities. She is also looking forward to meeting her pen pal in Canada. Perry’s constant companion, his seismometer, detects upheavals both real and metaphorical, as the twins travel toward adulthood and their new relationship. Told in dual narration, this sensitive journey of newly-orphaned nineteen-year-old twins caring for each other is worth a second look. While it may look to some outsiders that Justine is the ‘carer’ for autistic Perry, they care for and depend on each other through their trip to the Pacific Northwest. I like very much that Groth gives Perry’s voice equal weighting in the story. This is not a choice all authors would make, as in our fiction, as in our society, the voices of family members of autistic people is so often privileged over the voices of the people themselves. (Complicating this rather is the fact that Groth is the parent of an autistic twin.) This story side-steps both new adult lit and disability lit tropes and cliches as it explores an resilient, intimate sibling relationship at a time of transformation. Recommended for all who enjoy character-driven contemporary literature. ‘Good to meet you, Ross. Good to meet you, Jane.’ There’s a pause. Ross taps his chin twice, narrows his eyes. I recognise the signs. He’s had his first inkling that the young guy in seat 39G is not fashioned from a familiar mould. Bravo, Ross! Unless the association is patently obvious – Perry’s under stress or immersed in one of his favourite obsessions – it takes most people a while to suspect my brother is a bit skewiff. It’s one of his weightier burdens: look like everyone else, act like no one you’ve ever seen.Dad used to tell me: ‘If you go through life finding fault in others, you’ll end up in a world of one’. He said we need the people around us – warts and all – and I understand this much better now that I’m older. At Fair Go I will be on my own, but I will need help with some of the tasks – cooking and sewing and maintenance around my place and the farming jobs they get all residents to do. And the help I need will come from the people around me. But Fair Go is not the same as planet Earth, and not all people are helpers. Some are rolled-gold assholes. They kick your basketball away in the school playground or they move when you sit next to them on the train or they drop cigarettes into your sponge-bucket at the carwash or they call you a spaz and a retard. It’s very difficult to be responsible and pretend bad people’s faults are invisible. And if you have more bad people around you than good, you might even begin to think a world of one is okay.

  • Rebecca
    2019-04-24 17:15

    Justine Richter has a familiar spiel for strangers when circumstances cause her high-functioning autistic brother Perry ("Master Disaster") to start wigging out in public places: Perry has a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people - mixing with them and communicating with them - and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours. I appreciate your understanding and patience. From the moment "Just Jeans" sets out to negotiate the world for, and with her twin, Pez, you know this is a story to be savoured and treasured. Told through dual narratives from the perspectives of brother and sister - but also intercut with journal extracts prepared for Justine over the course of her life by the twins' recently deceased dad - "Are You Seeing Me?", particularly the sections narrated from Pez's viewpoint, will move you beyond words.I don't often master the italics function on Goodreads butyou just care so muchabout these two nineteen-year-olds who are embarking on the biggest road trip of their lives. Their world is shifting, they're about to meet the mum who ran away from home when they were four, there's an ancient water-dwelling monster lurking, earthquakes literal and figurative, references to classic Jackie Chan movies (which had me at hello) and multiple acts of kindness from complete strangers.I learned new phrases like "rolled-gold asshole" and "drive-by hugger", but even more than how much I loved Groth's writing, I loved how Perry wasn't portrayed as a quirky bunch of funny quirks for comedic or romantic value but as a real person who - maybe because of his neuro-diversity - loves even more deeply and sees even more clearly than a so-called "normal" person. Just thinking of the way Perry holds his sister's fingers - to comfort himself, to comfort her and revive her, just by the middle, ring and pinkie - will bring tears to your eyes. The mantra that runs through the story is (and it's worth me going full italics again): love is reliable. You can depend on it.And every second you're reading "Are You Seeing Me?" you believe that with all your heart.

  • Rochelle
    2019-04-19 17:33

    *I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*Darren Groth has blown me away. I want to stand up and applaud him. Perry is just what YA fiction needed. Hats off, Groth, Hats off. Groth could have easily written this book just from Justine’s point of view, but instead he showed us inside Perry’s head. Perry has “a brain condition that can cause him to feel anxious or upset in different places and circumstances. He has trouble with people – mixing with them and communicating with them – and it sometimes results in inappropriate behaviours.” But that doesn’t mean his opinion doesn’t matter and this is his story too so I am happy he had a voice. He had a tendency to let his imagination run wild, which I really loved about him, and he loved his sister greatly and wanted to do what was best for her.Justine has always been there for Perry. They have a special connection and she has always been able to understand him and help calm him when he becomes overwhelmed. She is always there to save the day and Perry wants to be the one to save the day for once – which is why he is willing to go into an assisted home, so Justine can have the life she deserves.I just absolutely loved the relationship between these two. They quickly drew me in and held me captivated as they navigated their travels. Both of them were well rounded and it felt like I was reading a story about real people.Although dead, their dad had quite a strong voice through journal entries. He kept a journal for Justine as she grew and through these entries we got to learn more about the background story, including the reason their mother abandoned them.This is very much a character driven book and the characters were outstanding. Both realistic and relatable. When the story ended, I wasn’t ready to let these two go.Serious and funny, heartwarming and touching, Are You Seeing Me? is the type of book that will stay with you for a long time. It is a standout contemporary that everyone should read. I highly, highly recommend it.First published on my blogInside My Worlds

  • Pauline
    2019-04-15 20:30

    4.5 stars. This a beautifully written, simple (but not simplistic) and touching book. The character development is just wonderful - Groth does a superb job at creating two different narrative voices of two very unique individuals. At the heart of this book is love and the bonds of family. With so many YA books out there where the protagonists are just mean and hurtful and unkind to each other it is so refreshing to see a positive exploration of the love between siblings. Although at first it may seem that it is an unbalanced relationship, over time we see that Justine needs Perry just as much as he needs her - we can't assume that because of his condition he is the weak link. The message that we can't live alone and that a little kindness between people is essential for our survival is a core element here.This is also funny in so many ways - but the humour is laughing with Perry and Justine and the situations they find themselves in but not laughing at them. Coming from Brisbane and having lived in Vancouver for two years there was a lot in the book that resonated with me. Oh, and I love the mention of having devonshire tea at Riverbend books on page 26.My only reservation, and this is just what kept it out of 5 stars for me, were the diary entries by their Dad - particularly when he writes about the break-up with the mum (p62) - it just didn't ring true to me that someone would write to their child in such detail about such matters for them to read when an adult - small point I know but it didn't seem authentic to me. Using diary entries as a third narrative voice, whilst helping to fill in the back story, is just not a technique that appeals to me.I think this novel might do for "mental conditions" the same thing that Wonder did for children with physical differences. It is so important to have books that represent the whole community and not just those that fit into what's perceived to be "normal". I loved it - will be surprised if some awards don't find this book.

  • Maxine
    2019-04-08 18:26

    Nineteen-year-old Justine and Perry are Australian twins. Perry has what Justine calls ‘a brain condition’ which makes it hard for him to deal with normal social conventions. He keeps a seismometer with him at all times which helps him measure earthquakes whether physical or emotional. He loves Jackie Chan, Ogopogo Canada’s answer to the Loch Ness monster, and his book about earthquakes but most of all he loves Justine or as he calls her Just Jeans. And she loves him too. Their mother had left them when they were four and their father raised them but now he has died. Before he did, he arranged for Perry to go to Fair Go, a home for the disabled. Now Justine is taking Perry on a trip to Vancouver so that they can have one last time together, where he can hunt for Ogopogo and where she has arranged to meet her pen pal. Are You Seeing Me by author Darren Groth is a sweet tale about two extremely likeable people who love each other and depend on each other more than either realizes. The narration is divided between the two along with entries from a journal that their dad has kept all of their lives and which he has left for Justine. The story is an insightful, sensitive, and compassionate portrayal of autism - Perry is high-functioning, intelligent and caring but his condition also clearly makes him at times very difficult. And Justine isn’t perfect – she gets frustrated with others and often overreacts in her efforts to protect Perry but it is clear that she needs Perry just as much as he needs her. This story could so easily have devolved into schmaltz and over-the-top melodrama but somehow by showing the problems involved with dealing with an autistic child, the story remains believable.This is a heartwarming and well-written story about family, disability, compassion, forgiveness, loss and the love between siblings and the sacrifices each is willing to make for the other. This is a quick read but an engrossing one with a nice touch of humour as well as pathos and gets a high recommendation from me.

  • Harper
    2019-03-24 15:08

    "I am focused, Just Jeans. I am seeing you." "And I am seeing us. Together."I marked this book as 'Want to Read' back in August last year (which seems like such a long time to wait), and was fortunate enough to pick it up earlier today. Honestly, I'm a huge sucker for road trips; going on them, seeing photos of them, watching movies based around them, even reading about them. Especially reading about them. I devoured this book in about three hours, split between snacking, reading at a crazily fast pace, and watching snippets of 'Will and Grace' re-runs, as usual. I'm going to be one of those people and say that what originally attracted me to this novel was the cover. It's gorgeous. Let me just say that even though I extremely detest 'Don't judge a book by its cover', it's safe to say you can in this case. A beautiful image for a beautiful book-- cliché, I know, but it's true. I'll admit, at first I was hesitant about this. Mostly because I really had no idea what I was getting myself into it. Atleast a quarter way through, I was absolutely hooked.It's such a shame I read through it so quickly; Justine & Perry really leave a lasting impression and are the kind of characters that I could really do with more of. I've read a lot of teen fiction in my time (being a few months away from seventeen myself and all) and I have to say that this was one of the better of the lot. I don't want to say too much, and it's a minute from midnight, but to sum this review up, I highly recommend this to everyone. It's a short read depending on your speed and an emotional rollercoaster. If you're as prone to crying as me, you'll be sobbing atleast every ten pages once you're around three quarters of the way through. A novel about growing up a little too fast, losing a parent, and finding yourself, 'Are You Seeing Me?' is one of those rare pieces of fiction that you know is going to stick with you for years to come.

  • Emily♥
    2019-04-15 20:15

    Whatever the opposite of a reading slump is, I’m in the middle of it.And I’m the opposite of complaining.I don’t want it to end, but I’m sure that ridiculous book is just over the horizon.But before I get to the inevitable, I happened upon this beautiful treasure. I haven’t read anything since I finished it 2 days ago, and I don’t know if anything will compete to Are You Seeing Me?. I sat, squished in the backseat of my dad’s truck on the 16 hour ride home from vacation, and read this book in 2 hours. No, wait, I devoured this book.2 very well spent hours lost in the amazingly wonderful world of Justine and Perry.I don’t know what to say; how to break down everything I’m feeling for this book. I do, however, know that I’d absolutely love to have someone like these twins in my life. They’re simply extraordinary people for separate reasons.I laughed. (If you’re a Beiber fan, you may not).I cried. (Often. Constantly).I sighed and grinned and was so proud of this book! I was so proud of how it all turned out. Okay, maybe “proud” isn’t the right word.I was humbled. I was ecstatic.I’m not surprised this book was awesome. It is, after all, written by an Australian. And we all know there’s an overabundance of awesome creative writing over there. Seriously, I haven’t met an Australian author I didn’t love. No lie.Are You Seeing Me? is, at the center, a story about family. But it is so much more than that and I’m a better person for knowing it. Beautifully written and extraordinarily complex, this isn't a book to forget.