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The Sight


The Sight

In the span of just a handful of novels, Melanie Golding has managed to become one of the writers of supernaturally tinged fiction whom I gladly place on my must-read list. Her latest is her best work yet and tells the story of a carnival girl named Faith who has a special and sometimes dangerous gift.

THE SIGHT sees Faith’s journey from childhood to young adulthood, as well as cleverly detailing the tribulations and often complicated relationships that follow her. The book jumps between the “before” and the “now,” a simple label used for providing a backstory that is often shocking and completely foretells her own future. It’s ironic that her power involves just that --- a psychic ability that allows her to see not just the future but, more specifically, how a person is going to die.

"Golding saves the best move for last in a terrific plot twist that still has me scratching my head in awe."

This caused a lot of issues when Faith was young, especially when her parents moved her from the education of the carnival to that of a traditional school. She had the perfect revenge against her bullies when she confronted them with the manner of each of their demises. The only thing she is unable to confirm is when these deaths will occur, which causes some undue stress and hardship for those she curses with her supernatural foresight.

It all started with the tragic death of her brother and others who perished when they fell through the ice on a frozen lake, all of which Faith had predicted. Members of the carnival, as well as her own family, never treated her quite the same way again. She also has very few friends; in fact, Betsy is the only person she can count on consistently.

Faith’s eventual downfall comes when she is pushed too far by a rude guest at the carnival who not only verbally harasses her but also grabs her in a highly inappropriate manner. She strikes back the only way she knows how, by telling the offending party that he is going to die painfully by drowning in a lake. The major problem is that the man in question is not the only one to hear this prognostication --- it is made in full view and earshot of many carnival workers as well as other guests.

Bounced from the carnival, Faith must find something else to do with her life. Unfortunately, both the man who assaulted her and the family of one of the schoolgirls to whom she exposed their manner of death come after her legally. Faith is now in for the fight of her life, a truly unfair situation since she knows in her heart that she has done nothing wrong and is being ostracized merely because of her fearful gift.

Golding saves the best move for last in a terrific plot twist that still has me scratching my head in awe. This is an ideal novel for the Halloween season, just scary enough to please hardcore horror fans yet written so well that it deserves to be seen as fine literary fiction.

Reviewed by Ray Palen on October 13, 2023

The Sight
by Melanie Golding