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The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E Schwab

This was the first contemporary fiction I read in a couple of years, on the recommendation of a friend. It did not disappoint. The Invisible Life of Addie Larue was tragically mystical and beautifully written. Thematically, it spoke to me and the characters were phenomenally deep and memorable.

Two major aspects of this book stand out; the writing and the characters. Add to this a tragic storyline, profound personal relationships and this book speaks to me at a personal level which touches my own vulnerabilities and insecurities. I guess that is what makes our favourite stories so important to us since they are so personally relevant. This book may not have such a profound impact on another reader even though they may still enjoy the story.

I have valued characters increasingly over the years, as I have read multiple novels and watched many shows. They can be pedestrian and boring but when they are vibrant and authentic they add another dimension to any story. Then the story is no longer just about the plot or chain of events but it is also about the character’s choices and rationale. This book has a theme of tragedy that brings out the richness in the book’s characters.  From that tragedy blossom multiple small meaningful personal relationships. Thematically it underscores the desire to make a difference and be remembered.

Tragedies are created when the heart craves for something and cannot obtain it. Consequently when such cravings are fulfilled a beautiful story follows. It is this interplay of tragedy and beauty that is so endearing to us as readers. This tragedy and beauty flows smoothly through this book as it transitions from one to another, as the slow build up of tragedy is followed by deeply beautiful developments.

This depth and emotion can only be depicted by subtle writing that can capture the tone. The writing in ‘The Invisible Life of Addie Larue’ is ethereal and poetic. The lines rhyme with each other and leave the reader with a romantic picture of the world and its characters. Even the main character is not described in physical terms but by the emotion she elicits in others. Every reader would create their own mental image of her.

I would definitely recommend reading this book. It would seem like a long book to read but if you get absorbed into it, it will only take you only a few days to finish and you will notice how the time flies by.

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