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By Faith, Not By Sight: The Inspirational Story of a Blind Prodigy, a Life-Threatening Illness, and an Unexpected Gift

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  • Posted March 26, 2012

    Inspirational

    I remember watching Scott MacIntyre on American Idol a few years ago. I was impressed that he could play the piano so well despite the fact that his sight was extremely limited; I can’t say that I remember his voice all that well. What I didn’t know was that he was a very accomplished musician before American Idol; having performed at the Kennedy Center and studied music in London. I was also unaware that shortly before he began his American Idol journey, he almost lost his life when he went into kidney failure. This book tells Scott’s story, in his own words, from childhood through his American Idol journey and beyond. It also shares the story of a family with a deep faith relying on God to provide and meet them where they were.

    I really enjoyed learning more of Scott’s story; it was so much richer than they were able to share during his time on American Idol. I was inspired by his family’s faith and their encouragement of Scott’s gift. Though the story was interesting, it seemed a bit long-winded at times. In fact, the book comes in somewhere around 280 pages. Despite that, learning more about Scott and his desire to bless people with his music was inspiring. I have a new admiration for him and look forward to hearing more from him in the future.


    Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided for this review. All thoughts are my own and I was not required to post a positive review.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 24, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I am a sucker for a story about someone overcoming the odds to


    I am a sucker for a story about someone overcoming the odds to achieve success. Add to that a story about a man born blind, a Christian, a classically trained musician and an accomplished popular recording artist you have many of the things that hook me into loving a popular memoir. By Faith Not By Sight far surpassed my expectations as a compelling story.

    The Prologue to the book is called "Competing Realities". This is the constructing principle of this story. Scott was born blind, but he was a musical prodigy, an overachieving student, who faced death due to kidney failure. The book reads like a piano concerto, in which amazing accomplishments are woven through a grey background of physical challenges and the potential of a tragic early death. The story begins with Scott's kidney failure contrasted with his exit from American Idol two years later.

    The book goes back to his childhood, his earliest memories. It moves on to the point at which is mother discovers that he is blind. And moves on to his discovery and development of his love for the piano. Scott graduated from Arizona State as a teen. He won the Marshall scholarship to attend graduate school in England, all before he was twenty years-old.

    The story is told in the present tense, as he struggles with kidney disease, alternative cures, dialysis and the search for a human donor. He covers his history in stories from his past. This provides sense movement and suspense in the story While we know that he overcomes to tell the story, the story construction takes the reader through the highs of accomplishment and the lows his life/ death struggle.

    The book does many things well. For the fans of Scot MacIntyre or American Idol, the book gives great insight into the making of a popular music career in the post-iTunes era. The book also does a fine job of letting the reader understand the spectrum of medical issues that make up blindness. He articulates the "blind experience" as well as anyone I have ever read.

    Scott does a good job in expressing his faith in the context of his life. The importance of prayer to his life and the life of his family is woven seamlessly throughout the story. He is able to articulate what is right about the Christian community worldwide. While prayer is important in his life, he also shares the doubts he has along the way. His life is also an example of sharing his faith in a secular world and a secular field of work, music and academics.

    If there is a criticism of this book, it is that sometimes it gets stuck in the minutia of the kidney failure experience and in the details about his experience on American Idol.

    Generally speaking, this is a great book for anyone who is interested in popular music It will also appeal to those who enjoy true stories of overcoming illness or disability. It most of all a great book of inspiration and encouragement for Christians, and readers of Christian literature.

    In full disclosure, I am reviewing this book for Book Sneeze, from Thomas Nelson publishers.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 26, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    A piano prodigy, a nineteen-year-old college grad, a Marshall sc

    A piano prodigy, a nineteen-year-old college grad, a Marshall scholar, and an American Idol finalist. This guy had it made. He could sing. He could ski blind. What couldn't he do?
    Even if you saw him in concert, you might not believe that Scott MacIntyre is blind, and you'd never guess that at nineteen, he faced a diagnosis that rocked his family and nearly took his life. So how did he do it? How did he overcome the odds?
    This is the story of how God used a dedicated family, a selfless acquaintance, hardship, and a host of characters to give him life, faith, determination, and experiences most can only imagine.
    Peek behind the scenes to see how he learned to overcome his disability, how he made it in the music industry, how he found the love of his life, and how God taught him that in all things, we can truly achieve our dreams By Faith, Not by Sight.
    I really enjoyed learning more of Scott's story by his family's faith and their encouragement of Scott's gift and his desire to bless people with his music was inspiring. What makes Scott MacIntyre an inspiration to so many is that he surpassed insurmountable odds by taking a leap of faith in God. By Faith, Not by Sight is the story of God in the MacIntyre's lives.
    This is a very great book that motivates you to want to live life to its fullest and celebrate the little challenges as well as the big ones and praise God through it all.
    A moving story of hope, faith, persistence and the power of dreams. I have been blessed and challenged by reading this book and would recommend this book.
    I received a free copy of thee- book from Thomas Nelson as part of their Booksneeze Blogger program.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 12, 2012

    An account to Inspire everyone to face fears and overcome

    By Faith, Not By Sight Scott MacIntryre© 2012 with Jennifer Schuchmann Thomas Nelson Publishers ISBN 978-0-8499-4721-6 (Hdcover) 270 pp. and pictures Scott MacIntyre’s parents never told their young son, born blind, he couldn’t live like sighted children. They taught him to swim and ride a two-wheeler. They also taught him precise orientation and mobilization to travel anywhere. His younger brother, Todd, helped Scott memorize paths he needed. Aged three Scott began playing the piano and performed professionally for at five. He graduate at the top of his high school class and won Marshall Scholar and Fullbright scholarships to Cambridge University in England. Shortly before Scott left, doctors discovered his kidneys were failing. In London Scott navigated around the city and the campus of Royal College of Music for a year of study. Then he needed kidney dialysis until Patricia Cosand, wife of a former music teacher, donated him a kidney. Scott’s sister, Katelyn, was also born blind and later developed kidney failure. Before her transplant, Scott, Katelyn, Todd and their mother toured as a singing group. Theys won an International competition for disabled musicians and performed at Kennedy Center. For winning a scholarship they met Laura Bush in the White House. After his kidney transplant, Scott was an American Idol finalist and toured with American Idol Live. He’s produced CD’s of his own compositions. He accomplishes his goals by deciding what he wants, facing fears and stepping out in faith. Scott believes he was born to show people that they can do more than they believe possible. He finds joy in little things as a way to deal with the big picture his problems present and always feels God with him. By Faith Not By Sight is an unforgettable account of a productive, satisfying life.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2012

    A great read!

    Scott Macintyre is well known for being on the hit t.v. show, American Idol. But, he is more than just a former contestant on American Idol. He is man who has challenges and circumstances that we cannot even being to fathom, but despite those challenges, he has an unshakable faith.



    Scott was born blind and embraced the gift of life from an early age. He began to learn how to play piano at an early age which helped him become a musician. At the young age of fourteen, Scott graduated from High School and four years later, he graduated from college.

    Scott has gone through several medical challenges, but the biggest was Renal failure. Through this, the reader learns the impact prayer has on peoples lives. Scott did get a kidney transplant, but during this time, Macintyre allows the reader to understand his complete dependency on God through prayer. Scott's family was very proactive in their prayers and he shares that in this book.

    This book will change your perspective on your own challenges, it will strengthen your faith and your prayer life. I can appreciate this book and the gifts that Scott Macintyre can offer the world.

    I am thankful to booksneeze for allowing me to review this book. I was not compensated for a positive review.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 8, 2012

    The Most Worthwhile Read This Year

    By Faith, Not by Sight by Scott MacIntyre I have to say this book as been one of the most worthwhile reads of my year so far. As one of many that was inspired by this pianist, singer song writer when I saw him on American Idol I thought wow. American Idol was not able to share the true inspiration of Scott’s life. In this book you read about his life so far. Oh wow is what I have to say. It makes me stop and think about what I take for granted in my own life. I admire this man not only for his achievements but because of his faith. You meet his parents in this book as well as his siblings. This family has such a strong faith they could have easily turned from their faith but did not. Scott who has been blind from birth has not let that stop him. His parent in an attempt to give him the best education home schooled him and the result of him being home schooled is a graduation from his first college at the age of 19 where he is the valedictorian. It is on a day where he is celebrating his start to the rest of his life (college graduation) he finds out he has a life threatening illness. You get to read about the gift of music he has been given from a very young age. The gift is his piano playing as a very young child. I thought his parents must have found inspiration from him and how much strength he gave them at this young age. Scott attitude is one that impresses me as well of his determination. I could not put this book down I got it in the mail opened up the first page to look at it as I walked back to the house and was hooked. I was even in the middle of reading another book and I had to read this one. I encourage you to get his book. You will look at your life and it’s trials in a different way, well maybe the same but you will approach them with a different attitude and a new determination that Scott inspired. I give this book my best rating of 5 stars. I wish I could give it more. I must also let you know I received this complimentary book from Book Sneeze for my honest review. The review is my own opinions.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 28, 2012

    Inspirational

    By Faith, Not By Sight By: Scott MacIntyre The subtitle of this book reads: “The Inspirational Story of a Blind Prodigy, a Life-Threatening Illness, & an Unexpected Gift.” That subtitle purely captures the essence of this book. It is the amazing story of a young man who endured the types of hardships many of us cannot begin to imagine. The loss of sight alone would crush the dreams of most. However, Scott’s story also included the threat of renal failure and the need for a kidney transplant. In spite of these difficulties, Scott learned to push through, to lean upon his faith, and continue to dream. This story is compelling mainly because it is surprisingly optimistic in the midst of incredibly difficult circumstances. Readers will no doubt walk away encouraged and grateful—which is exactly what the author was after! In an attempt to provide full disclosure: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers Review Program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 27, 2012

    I fell in love with Scott's voice and personality on Season 8 of

    I fell in love with Scott's voice and personality on Season 8 of American Idol. What I didn't know was that Scott has lived a life far deeper than what the show was able to portray. In this book, Scott takes us from when he learned to play the piano as a young boy, through his unique academic journey, to the realization of his dreams on American Idol. The biggest surprise was that Scott had to overcome a lot more than just his blindness. His unwavering faith in times of trial give hope to anyone who has ever faced overwhelming fear.

    There are many parts to Scott's story, and this book weaves them together perfectly. I especially loved Scott's vulnerablity in sharing so much of himself in a way that few celebrities do. Scott comes across as a humble, kind-hearted and devoted man, who learned to trust those around him and believe in his dreams.

    Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy of this book and I was not required to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 25, 2012

    I came across this book and I couldn┬┐t put it down. I literally

    I came across this book and I couldn’t put it down. I literally read the whole thing in one night. It’s that good. I’ve been an avid American Idol fan for years now. I remember going to my first American Idol Live concert for season 8 and seeing Scott live. He was one of my favorite parts of that concert. In this book, Scott reveals alot about his journey being a blind piano prodigy and all the events in his life that made him who he is today. He speaks alot about his relationship with Jesus and honestly, it’s refreshing. Hands down, this book is a really great book to give to a graduate or a person who needs a little encouragement. Scott is a great example of a person who has used his mountains as stepping stones for his dreams. Amazing book, amazing author.

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  • Posted August 11, 2012

    Making Music for God! By Faith, Not By Sight is the inspirationa

    Making Music for God!
    By Faith, Not By Sight is the inspirational autobiography of Scott MacIntyre. I had not heard of Scott and his appearance on American Idol, but after reading his story I definitely am going to listen to his music. As a musician, a singer and a songwriter, his story is a message of hope and faith to everyone especially to those who are handicapped physically, mentally, or spiritually since Scott is blind. This is a must read for anyone who thinks life has handed them a lemon or thinks that God has abandoned them.

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  • Posted May 25, 2012

    POWERFULLY INSPIRATIONAL Scott MacIntyre's book "By Faith,

    POWERFULLY INSPIRATIONAL

    Scott MacIntyre's book "By Faith, Not By Sight" is a must read! A well-written true story of his life and the challenges he faced with blindness and end-stage kidney failure. He gives details about how he overcame those challenges and also fills the reader in on moments I had not heard or read about before from his run on "American Idol". He and his family have a special bond based a strong faith and their love for each other. This book helped to give me perspective in my own life, being born extremely nearsighted and hearing impaired. Even if you are not disabled, you will be inspired to pursue your dreams no matter what the adversity.

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  • Posted May 15, 2012

    Highly recommend this

    I watched Scott when he was on American Idol and was so impressed with his singing ability and the way he handled himself on stage. That made this book about his struggles even more meaningful. He truly is a young man who walks by faith, not by sight, and learning of all he has overcome was a real encouragement to me. John 16:32-33

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    Posted February 10, 2013

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    Posted June 4, 2012

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    Posted June 6, 2012

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