REVIEW: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

“Books, she has found, are a way to live a thousand lives–or to find strength in a very long one.”

Why Did I Read This Book?

I bought this book towards the end of last year because I had seen loads of people raving about it on Twitter AND the book itself is beautiful. However, being a fantasy novel, it’s not my usual sort of thing but I had been told that it was an easy and enjoyable read so I decided it would be my first book of 2021.

What Did I Think?

Being over 500 pages, it took me longer than usual to read but like everyone had told me, it was an easy read. 

If you don’t know what The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is about, then you’re in for a treat. The book follows a young woman named Adeline LaRue who, in 1714, unintentionally makes a deal with the devil in a desperate act to not marry the man her parents have found for her. The deal? That she will live forever but never be remembered. The moment someone turns away from her, she is instantly forgotten and can’t even write her own name. 

So we follow Addie throughout her 300 years of living in a kind of Forest Gump-style story that places Addie in some of the most important events in history. Yet in 2014, everything begins to change when Addie meets a mysterious man in a bookshop who remembers her… 

Although it took me ages to get through it, it felt a proper journey that I was on with Addie herself. I loved watching her live through decades of history and how she watched the world change before her. I also found it fascinating to see how she learned to worm her way out of sticky situations. 

However, as much as I loved the story, towards the end I felt like the story ended up being something else; more of a love story that felt like it was kind of thrown in at the last minute. However, that didn’t take away from that fact that the ending completely broke my heart and left me sobbing like a baby in bed (which is safe to say shocked my boyfriend completely). 

There has been some recent backlash regarding the book and V.E Schwab because the book did not feature any characters of colour. It is ridiculous to think that throughout the 300 years that Addie lived, she didn’t encounter any black history events or any black people for that matter, which is extremely disappointing. It would have been amazing if V.E Schwab had placed Addie in significant events in black history but the fact that it was simply overlooked by her, her editors, her publishers etc…it’s disheartening. 

Although I enjoyed the story, it did drag and I thought it could have easily been half the size it was. Had she focused more on the love story from the start, I think I would have probably enjoyed the book more and it would have felt more authentic and not just included last minute. 

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Publisher: Titan Books
Published: 2020
No. Pages: 560
Genre: Fantasy
Trigger Warnings: Abusive relationship, Alcohol abuse, Assault (physical and sexual), Death, Depression, Drugs, Prostitution, Sexism, Suicide (attempted), War
Links: Goodreads, Amazon, Blackwells

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