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Publisher's Summary

What is a family?

Rick Myers is a despondent 17-year-old who just lost his parents in a car wreck. His family is now the four teenage buddies he's grown up with in a run-down apartment building. Fast with their fists, flip with their mouths, and loyal to a fault, "the crew" is all he has. At least he thinks so until he meets Daisy, an intelligent, independent, self-assured blind girl. Her guts in a world where she's often painfully vulnerable intrigue Rick, and her hopeful outlook inspires him to begin believing in himself.

But when the dark side of Daisy's past catches up with her, tragedy scatters the crew and severely tests Rick's resolve to build his promising future. Fortunately, his life is changed by a couple with a pay-it-forward attitude, forged out of their personal struggle with grief and loss. Their support makes all the difference to Rick and eventually to the ones he holds most dear as they face their own challenges.

The Bright Side of Darkness is a story of redemption and the ultimate victory that comes from the determination of the human spirit.

©2015 J. E. Pinto (P)2015 J. E. Pinto

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What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Simple and engaging

As one would expect from a book in this genre, this is a
character-driven story. It's engaging and has its moving moments.
However, both the story and the characters are rather flat and
unrealistic. The only truly likable character is Daisy and she's rather
too accomplished to be believable. Religious elements of this story are
somewhat heavy handed as well.

Adam Syron has a youthful voice with a Texas accent that fits the story
well. He makes a reasonable effort to give distinctive voices to the
characters. Unfortunately, both the voicing and the production are
inconsistent. There are some significant technical issues that make this
production sound unprofessional.

All that said, the author did manage to draw me into the lives of these
characters and kept me interested in what happened to them. I enjoyed
the listen.

NOTE: I received a free copy of this audiobook from the author in
exchange for this unbiased review.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

I was surprised by this book

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn a bit about blindness or who just likes a good uplifting story. ;

What did you like best about this story?

the growth of the characters through the story, and the fact that it isn't part of a series. It's nice to read a novel with a beginning and a middle and an end, all in one book.

Which scene was your favorite?

Oh there were so many. I loved the scenes with Tim and Jake, and the ones with Rick and Walter, especially the first one.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

people can surprise you? Maybe? I really don't want to be cliché, but stupid things like don't judge a book by it's cover comes to mind. lol

Any additional comments?

I put this book on my wish list and had intentions of reading it because my friend had written it and I wanted to support her work. but honestly I really really didn't want to read a book about some blind chick with a guide dog being enspiring and blah blah blah, we've all been there and hated it. But I figured it's only 8 hours of my life and the narrator was great so here we go. So for the first little bit I was all like, yeah well this is nauseatingly familiar. He's amazed she can breathe and walk and dress herself and talk and all...okay it wasn't *quite* that bad but he was annoying with his "even though she was blind she could do fill in the blank" all the time. But then, and I am not spoiling it for anybody, but then something big happens which caused me to forget I had a life outside my book for the next 5 hours or so. I was kinda wishing I could put my kids in stasis so I wouldn't have to put it down. I loved the story, and the narrator was awesome as well. He did different voices which were very well done. The only thing is that he sometimes moved his head when he read so the sound moved or was muffled sometimes. That's the only reason for my lower rating on performance. The story and everything else was fabulous. The characters were believable and who doesn't love babies and dogs?

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Great contemporary coming-of-age story.

I'm glad I read this book. Inspirational fiction isn't normally my cup of tea, for a lot of reasons, but this story explodes off the page, full of action and emotion, and the journey to Christian faith our main character, Rick, takes is just one part of a big picture.
Our main set of characters is a group of young men living in a public housing apartment building in gritty, urban Dallas Texas. Each guy has specific personality traits, likes and dislikes, and habits and behaviours, and we get to know pretty quick which one is the jokester, which the would-be "tough guy," and so on. All the guys have prickly personalities in one way or other, but Ms. Pinto shows us, almost right away, what is likable about each of them, and keeps reminding us, even as they do some pretty unlikeable things.


So, this is a book about male friendship - awesome, messy, loving, devoted male friendship. This aspect is, quite seriously, the best part of this story. I've never read a book that depicted such close connections between young male friends. I mean...these guys touch and hug each other!!! :-) More than that, though, they have each other's backs in huge ways, and even when some of the friendships break apart, they do the hard work and say the difficult words they need to to not only heal the rifts in the friendships, but to heal the rifts in themselves. If you want a depiction of masculinity that's toughness hiding softness, savviness warring with brashness, sassiness shaking hands with smartness...you've found it in this book.

If you love coming-of-age stories, and religious elements are your thing (or you can respect some religious content for the sake of a good story), get this book.

A word about the narration: It's good, but not fantastic...but it works. If anything, the rough edges make the story feel a lot more real.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An amazing story woven with the mind, heart and spirit that will give hope to almost any reader.

The only negative thing I have to say is the recording has a great deal of sound glitches. This book is so healing, realistic and worth the read I think they need to pay the same guy who read it so *he* can be the one who reads it because he does a wonderful job. I am blessed enough by this read to encourage you to give it a listen because you will receive hope, healing and if your heart and mind are open, you will have no regrets. And yes, there is a spiritual Christian thread throughout the book but it isn't your jerky unrealistic Christians, it's for those who have been hopeless for a long, long time. Bet you'll be blessed for giving it a try. Enjoy and be blessed.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant! Hard to put down.

I absolutely love this book. I found myself rooting for the main characters in this story. I like the fact that this book is not all roses and rainbows and there are no Hollywood endings, but it still offers a lot of insight and hope for those who face challenges. Well done. I recommend this to everyone.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

An Emotional Journey

I was entertained; I was angry; I was very sad; I was even proud of the characters at times. This book doesn't let your feelings have a break. Despite the emotional assult, or perhaps because of it, I couldn't put this book down. I usually don't go in for the whole coming-of-age theme, but there is so much more packed into this book that I forgot about that element. I particularly enjoyed the character development of so many characters. At first I thought I might never tell all the guys apart. Maybe the narrator could have varied the voices a little, but I didn't struggle after the first chapter or so. Speaking of the narrator, I found the recording a little strange. At some points it's like the recording changed, and the narrator was speaking through an intercom or something. That sort of thing doesn't bother me much, especially if  the story is good. And this one is. Likable characters, gripping plot, and just enough annoyance at the struggles the characters go through to keep you reading.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Must read!

This book is an excellent read. From the first few pages it grabs you and will not let go. I could not put it down and would have read it all the way through. The character development is fantastic; its like you are a part of the "crew". The plot and story line kept my attention and had me on my seat through the whole book. I love how this book incorporates Christian views of hope,love, and Grace. Another great part of this book is how disability is portrayed, how Daisy is capable but does things in her own way. My only wish is that it had continued to see Rick and the others find love. Please write a sequel and I'd gladly read that one too.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Mary
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • 01-03-18

Pretty good story, great narration

I usually listen to books because I want to escape reality, take a break so that I can come back refreshed later. I don't normally listen to books where the story could take place in my hometown or one like it. Therefore, I almost didn't read this book...

But i am glad I didn't give up on this story. For one thing, the narration was excellent. For another thing, the characters in this book are ones, even though I haven't been a teenager for a while, I could still relate them.

This book is definitely worth the credit, worth the time taken to listen to it, and worth listening to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

a great book!

I really enjoyed this book. I enjoy stories about people from the wrong side of the tracks, or in this case the wrong side of the highway. The narrator did a great job as well.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Daryl
  • Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
  • 01-21-17

Couldn't finish

I heard the sample of this book and was excited to read a story about a group of scrappy teenagers forced to fend for themselves, one of whom happens to be a blind girl.
Not only was Daisy, as a blind character, completely shallow (she did stuff! AND she was blind! and she had a dog!), but the dialogue was clunky and childish. The phrase |or something" was used in both dialogue and narrative passages so frequently that I wanted to yank my hair out.
The narrator puts on this "Texas" accent, then drops it in places, then picks it up again. You can hear pages turning and other background noise, and some sentences or parts of sentences were clearly re-recorded.
I wanted to like this. I wanted to like it a lot. Unfortunately, I couldn't get past the juvenile dialogue, improbable circumstances, and clunky audio production.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful