Katie has a seemingly perfect life. She's good looking. She owns a fashion shop. And she's in a relationship with a rich, successful man. But she has a secret: a younger sister, Bells, who is very different to her and doesn't fit into the perfect world she has created for herself. When Katies parents announce they need a break she reluctantly agrees to have Bells to stay in the immaculate flat she shares with her boyfriend, Sam. The problem is she's never told anyone that she has a sister because Bells was born disabled and Katies relationship to her has always been a mixture of embarrassment and resentment that her mother's attention and affection always seemed so much stronger for her helpless little sister. But Bells is anything but helpless and starts by pinning her tatty posters of David Beckham all over Sam's white walls, playing Stevie Wonder at full volume and striking up conversations with people she doesn't know (including an attractive young man at their local Sainsburys). Soon Katie's relationship with Sam is under severe strain. And things get even more difficult when Katie receives some disturbing news about her mother.
With more than a little help from Bells, Katie finally begins to learn what love's really all about, and that appearances can be very deceiving. LOOK THE WORLD IN THE EYE addresses sibling rivalry, family relationships and being different with compassion and humour. Readers will fall in love with Bells, who wasn't born 'perfect'. It's a tremendously warm and funny and feelgood novel, with some uncomfortable truths and reassuringly human characters, who are dealt with honestly.
Alice Peterson wrote a memoir, A Will to Win, which was published in 2001. Look the World in the Eye is her first novel. She lives in West London. You can find out more about Alice at www alicepeterson.co.uk.