Published October 6th 2020 by Tor Books
Kindle Edition, 448 pages
It’s been months since I’ve read a new book, and today’s review is my very first in a very long time too. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab has been on my radar since I’ve seen that Tiktok video, with a reader exclaiming how mind blowing it was and from the synopsis alone, it really is really quite intriguing. Oh, and this is also my very first book from the author! Party!
“France, 1714: in a moment of desperation, a young woman makes a Faustian bargain to live forever—and is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets.
Thus begins the extraordinary life of Addie LaRue, and a dazzling adventure that will play out across centuries and continents, across history and art, as a young woman learns how far she will go to leave her mark on the world.
But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.”
The story started with a bang. The first half is definitely enchanting enough for me to continue with it – like, I’m all in I wanted to finish this right away because I really wanted to know how it’d end for our protagonist kind of thing, and I was also very intrigued with how she would be able to navigate the world after she stops aging.
I mean, initially I was reminded of the film The Age of Adaline. Ya’ know, where the lead Adaline Bowman stops aging after some almost magical accident. It’s maybe because of the similar scenario of never aging, and of course, with their almost similar names but anyway…
The plot is definitely very interesting, but at some point the whole back and forth with the past and the present becomes too taxing for me, too repetitive and almost uninteresting. I thought the whole structure was just messy in a way that we were informed about Addie’s whereabouts at a particular time or era but we really didn’t see how she developed over the years. Don’t get me wrong, I liked Addie’s character but it feels to me that after living for over three hundred years, you’d think that there’ll be a whole lot changes about her. Sadly, she’s still the same Addie we’ve met from the first few chapters of the story.
What I particularly liked about the book is the character of Henry. First, I absolutely loved that he is nonbinary. I think this is the first character I’ve read that is actually nonbinary. I’m totally in with the representation. Second, I loved how how his character is very well-developed – his backstory, his relationships and even his internal musings. They’re so very relatable.
Luc, the “god of darkness” Addie made a bargain with has a very interesting character too. I just wished that we get to see his point of view too? I mean, it’s going to sound a bit too much but with the way things turned out for him and for Addie – I don’t believe I’m the only one who wanted that development.
Overall, I thought it was a decent read. It’s not as mind-blowing as I expected it to be due to its hype but it had its moments. I just wished that the ending was tweaked a bit, since we’re given a scenario where Addie was somehow left in a limbo (?) if you wanna call it that. Yeah, it’s an interesting read. I don’t particularly see myself rereading this in the future but I’d still recommend it for people who loves this kind of fiction.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
About The Author
V.E. Schwab, also known as Victoria Schwab, is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than a dozen books, including the acclaimed Shades of Magic series, This Savage Song, Our Dark Duet, and Vicious. Her work has received critical acclaim, has been featured in the New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, Washington Post, and more, has been translated into more than a dozen languages, and has been optioned for television and film. When she’s not haunting Paris streets or trudging up English hillsides, she lives in Nashville and is usually tucked in the corner of a coffee shop, dreaming up monsters.