The kids at Sam’s school never knew if they should make fun of her for being too smart or too dumb. That’s what it means to be dyslexic, smart, and illiterate. Sam is sick of it. So when her mom gets a job in a faraway city, Sam decides not to tell anyone about her little illiteracy problem. Without her paradox of a reputation, she falls in with a new group of highly competitive friends who call themselves the Brain Trust. When she meets Nate, her charming valedictorian lab partner, she declares her new reality perfect. But in order to keep it that way, she has to keep her learning disability a secret. The books are stacked against her and so are the lies. Sam’s got to get the grades, get the guy, and get it straight—without being able to read.
Dyslexia? Do we really know what it is? If you have to ask yourself about it, the chances are no, you don’t.
I thought I did. This book proved to me that I didn’t. I think some of us are so, so mistaken.
Working at a school myself, I can admit that I’ve seen some things I thought I never might, witnessed diagnoses and pills shoved down throats I’ve never been too sure actually need what is being prescribed, and have this big bold allusion of how black and white things are up against how I think they should be in my head.
When I picked up Counting to D, I wasn’t really looking at the dyslexic side of things, I was looking at the romantic view. And I shouldn’t have been. What I found in this novel is so, so much more than just some silly teen love(which I’ll get to in a bit).
If you’re going into this book for a great love story about a boy who doesn’t care that a girl has dyslexia and loves her unconditionally, turn away, go home. This book isn’t for you.
If you’re looking for a story about a girl who struggles to resume a normal life daily battling the one condition she just can’t outdo, who also stumbles upon a great set of friends and find that she really can accept and respect herself, then, yes, hi, come closer.
This book is so, so heartfelt. As a dyslexic herself, Kate Scott manages to portray the life and times of one so beautifully. The emotions I felt for Sam were the kind of things I’ve never felt for characters before. I wanted to detach myself from this book so I wouldn’t feel the way I did, but I couldn’t, I couldn’t, I couldn’t.
And to make matters worse, Sam’s family issues just about drove me over the edge. Reading about the life she had to live alongside a hardworking mother and a deadbeat dad proved all too much for my little sensitive ticker.
Nate, Sam’s male best friend/boyfriend was a wonderful addition to the story, and I wish I could say that I loved him as much as I should have, but this isn’t his story, and he wasn’t always the perfect boy I’d like him to be. He helped provide Sam room to grow and was achingly adorable but I wish some elements of the relationship there were a bit different, including how speedy the start up there felt for me. Eli and Kaitlyn also made great additional cast members and the support system there warmed my part, as odd as it may have been shown on the latter’s part.
For a debut novel, Counting to D is a wonderful story of the hardships a lovely dyslexic girl must face in order to feel normal time and time again.