Mismatched Eyes

The past two books that I read – White Cat by Holly Black and The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets by Eva Rice – both have characters with mismatched eyes. Of course, when these characters first appeared, my first thought was “Are they Gracelings?” Yes, I know this is ridiculous because they’re characters from different books. I just found it funny that I read two books with characters like this:

The picture above is of Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore, which I grabbed from Amazon.

According to Wikipedia, this condition is called heterochromia:

In anatomy, heterochromia refers to a difference in coloration, usually of the iris but also of hair or skin. Heterochromia is a result of the relative excess or lack of melanin (a pigment). It may be inherited, due to genetic mosaicism, or due to disease or injury. Eye color, specifically the color of the irises, is determined primarily by the concentration and distribution of melanin. In complete heterochromia, one iris is a different color from the other. In partial heterochromia or sectoral heterochromia, part of one iris is a different color from its remainder.

So, what is the point of this post, you may ask. I’m just wondering if you’ve ever met a person who has mismatched eyes? I don’t think they’re that common in Asians because we mostly have dark brown (nearly black) eyes. Oh and if you’ve also read other books with characters with mismatched eyes, let me know about them.

29 thoughts on “Mismatched Eyes

    • Michelle, how do you find out about these out of print books? Most of the books that you’ve told me about are out of print and I wonder how you know of them. 😛

      • Oh, I’m a used bookstore tambay. Try to explore Recto’s bookshops. There are gems there hidden under piles of rotting textbooks.

      • Recto is so far away. 😦 I think I’ve only been there when I was studying for the board exam because that’s where the review center was located.

  1. David Bowie has different eye colors but legend is that it is the result of a punch in the eye rather than genetics. (hence the “Labyrinth” character having different colored eyes)

    I’m currently reading “Dark Water” by Laura McNeal and the protagonist has heterochromia. She jokingly tells someone at one point that she can see the past with one eye and the future with the other (guess that’s her grace).

    I’ve seen different colored eyes in real life with animals, but I don’t think that I’ve seen anyone in person with different colored eyes.

    • I didn’t know that, about David Bowie. That’s fascinating. The Labyrinth mythos took a lot of real-life details and made them its own.

    • The character in The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets has a different colored eye because it was poked when he was younger. So maybe the punch theory is accurate.

      Different colored eyes in animals are cute, I think.

  2. I have a friend who’s husband’s eyes are two different colors: green and brown. But it isn’t one green and one brown. No each eye is half green, half brown. It’s exceptionally freaky.

    A girl I work with has the “standard” One eye blue, one eye brown.

    • At least your friend’s husband’s eyes are symmetrical! Kind of freaky, yes, but very intriguing as well.

      It’s funny that the “standard” is one blue and one brown. I bet if I meet someone with eyes like that, I wouldn’t be able to stop staring.

  3. I’ve met people with this. It’s usually been blue eyes with one eye having a… mmm, like a spot of brown in it. Actually, if you google for Kate Bosworth’s eyes, the one that is described as brown is really blue with like.. the lower half looks like a drop of brown was put into it. Like that. That’s what I’ve seen in the people with mismatched eyes I’ve run into (like.. 2 of them so far, so it’s not a big pool). 🙂 Wikipedia calls this partial heterochromia.

    • The colors were swirled? That sounds amazing! It must be fun to have such unusual eyes. I always found mine boring because they’re just dark brown (nearly black).

  4. Pingback: Plain Kate by Erin Bow « Chachic's Book Nook

  5. Pingback: Retro Friday: Graceling by Kristin Cashore « Chachic's Book Nook

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