KEEP YOUR HEAD UP, MR. PUTNAM by Peter Putnam

KEEP YOUR HEAD UP, MR. PUTNAM

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KIRKUS REVIEW

After a decade of blindness, the author reviews his four weeks course at the Seeing Eye in Morristown, New Jersey. Blinded by a gun accident before his 21st birthday, the fact that he had nearly lost his life eased his adjustment back into a world without sight and made the future a challenge to him -- first to return to Princeton and be graduated -- which he had never felt before. This is the story of the training of the man, as the Seeing Eye instructors and heads blueprinted the unseen world in which he was to live out his days, as they introduce him to his dog, after a concentrated rehearsal with a human playing the part of a dog, and as they supervise, correct and observe all parts of the training. With a youthful, cynical sophistication, the author felt the Seeing Eye was going to be a prison but found, to his surprise, that his fellow students and instructors were quite nice, sympathetic human beings. He learned to correct the characteristics of the new blind and to understand that Minnie, his dog, was ""the most important woman in his life...a beautiful blonde bitch, perfectly suited to a Princeton man"" (she got over being a ""dental whirlwind...with admirable occlusion"") and his first solo with Minnie was utter clation. Then the let-down, as techniques had to be perfected, trust in Minnie never-failing, and rewards never forgotten and all the humans went through their periods of nervous and physical concentration. Stories of his entertaining collection of companions, of past graduates and their errors, of the Seeing Eye system and set-up, round this out to a happy ""graduation"". Neither grim nor tragic but alive and interesting, this is the success story of an affliction.

Pub Date: March 12th, 1952
Publisher: Harper