Have you ever made a choice that could change your who life completely? Tangerine County Florida is a small place, where you would think you would find beaches and fresh ocean air, but here it’s mostly farmland. Erick, Paul’s brother on the outside is a star football player who does supposedly does nothing wrong, but that is just an act, he really is a violent thief. Paul is a caring and gentle child who wants nothing but the truth about how he is visually impaired.
When it comes to the truth he is your guy to talk to. Throughout the voluminous novel Tangerine, Paul Fisher and the people around him made many decisions that affected him mentally and physically.
To know that her son was being bullied by his eye impairment and not being eligible to do the things he wanted to do Paul’s mother made the choice to “lose” Paul’s IEP form because she knew Paul heard that it affected his soccer and the way people looked at him.
“He has problems with his eyesight- he’s legally blind” pg 25. I’d like you to fill out an IEP for Paul- an individualized education plan, being vision impaired. “There is no IEP in your file. Your IEP form disappeared somewhere between Lake Windsor and here”. During the last soccer game of the season, Paul was playing his old team and his ex coach said he couldn’t play because he couldn’t play on his team.
Paul’s mother made the choice to lose Paul’s IEP form because she knew it affected Paul’s soccer playing.
After going through so much with Erik, whether it’s put downs or harassment. Paul finally decides to stand up to his big brother. To start off with, when Paul was little he remembers almost getting his head smashed with a bat by, who he thought was Erik. Also Erik made up a story about how Paul was blind, he told his friends that he stared into a solar eclipse for too long, so people called him eclipse boy and made fun of him. Erik was really the reason why Paul is blind; he sprayed paint into Paul’s eyes. Paul wanted everyone to see who Erik really was, because the truth and in Paul’s eyes he is not who everyone thinks he is. “I raised my finger like it was loaded and I pointed it at Arthur. “I saw you kill Luis Cruz”
Paul’s father really only cares about the Erik Fisher football dream and wanted nothing to do with Paul. “What position did I play when I did get into a game? “How am I supposed to know that?” Paul’s father goes to all of Erik’s games, rain or shine, no matter what he’s there. To add to that Paul’s father set up a file for Erik’s football scholarships. “All I can say in my own defense is that this was the critical season for Erik. College recruiters are watching him a lot is riding on this season. His entire future for football is riding on it”. While Paul felt proud for telling the truth about Erik his grandfather said “The kid needed to know which end is up, that’s all. First off he needed to get his backside whipped for hurting Paul.” Dad looked away. Paul’s father didn’t really pay attention to Paul, he really only cared about Erik and his football.
Throughout the novel, the characters faced many tough decisions. Whether it was Paul’s mother losing the IEP form to Paul choosing to stand up to Erik and Arthur or Paul’s father choosing Erik’s football dream over anything. All had an impact on Paul emotionally, physically and mentally. “Things actually seemed to be going my way” said Paul because he finally got closure. Finally it’s the Paul Fisher dream. Throughout this thrilling book, choices were made that affected Paul by him being able to do the things he wanted to, standing up for what’s right and being put down and forgotten by his own father.