The Mind's Eye by Paul Fleischman

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Eighty-eight-year old Elva and Courtney, an attractive sixteen-year-old with a severed spinal chord, lie in adjacent beds in a grim Bismarck, North Dakota convalescent home. Ignored by the world, the only resource they have left is their imagination.

As Elva and Courtney go on a fantasy trip to Italy (accompanied by Elva's long dead husband and guided by a 1910 travel book), Elva shows Courtney a new way to envision love. But to accept it, and the gift of the imagination, Courtney must make the trip her own--even if she destroys the art Elva holds most dear.

Written entirely in dialogue, Mind's Eye can be performed as reader's theater, but it is a fully satisfying novel. In this extraordinarily innovative, profound, and yet readable book Paul Fleischman makes us all feel what a powerful--and dangerous--tool the imagination can be.

About Paul Fleischman

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Paul R. Fleischman, MD, is the author of Cultivating Inner Peace, The Healing Spirit, and Spiritual Aspects of Psychiatric Practice. He has contributed to the American Journal of Psychiatry, Landscape, Nature, The Yale Review, and The University of Chicago Review. In 1993 he was awarded the Oskar Pfister award by the American Psychiatric Association. He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.
Published September 15, 1999 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR). 112 pages
Genres: Young Adult, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Children's Books. Fiction

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Fleischman cleverly sets up readers to side first with Courtney, who has all she can do to accept her body's condition, then leads them to switch allegiance to Elva, as the spunky octogenarian uses a 1910 Baedeker's Italy to lure Courtney into joining her on an imaginary grand tour of Italy.

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