An engaging and informative portrait of a visually impaired person’s life.



In this posthumous debut memoir, Marafito, with co-author Odubayo Thompson, offers an account of an independent and determined woman who refused to let severely limited eyesight define her.

The author was born in 1933 in the New York City borough of the Bronx. By the time she was 4 years old, she’d undergone numerous surgeries, aimed at saving her sight. Still, one eye remained totally sightless, and the other afforded only minimal vision. Unwilling to be limited by her disability, she quickly learned “the gentle art of bluffing,” which built her self-confidence: “As far as I was concerned, no one had to know I couldn’t see just like anyone else.” With the help of special programs at the city’s public schools, and her own drive to succeed, Marafito excelled, entering high school early at the age of 11. She began participating in recreational programs at the Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired in Manhattan; years later, she would meet her future husband, Jerry, there. They would go on to have two children, and eventually, they opened their own business—a newsstand at the Croton Harmon commuter railroad station in Westchester, New York—which they maintained for several decades. Odubayo Thompson is the eldest of Marafito’s two daughters, who was also born with partial vision, giving her a unique perspective of the challenges faced by her parents. She crafted this memoir from her mother’s extensive notes, discovered after her death. As a result, it’s written from Marafito’s first-person perspective, including a whimsical account of her own demise. However, it’s far more than just an accumulation of the specifics of a life well lived. It offers humorous and poignant anecdotes as it reveals what everyday existence is like for a person with limited vision. For example, here’s a description of a walk down Gun Hill Road after a snowstorm: “Curbs and sidewalks were lost in a collage of pink and purple bubbles, and more than once I found myself veering off into the depths of even more treacherous terrain.” Family photographs enhance the pleasantly conversational narrative.

An engaging and informative portrait of a visually impaired person’s life.

Pub Date: Sept. 28, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-73220-961-9

Page Count: 398

Publisher: Time Tunnel Media

Review Posted Online: Oct. 3, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

Did you like this book?


From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet