Book review: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

Published October 6th 2020 by Tor Books


A Life No One Will Remember. A Story You Will Never Forget.

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.

My rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Estelle used to call these the restless days, when the warmer-blooded gods began to stir, and the cold ones began to settle. When dreamers were most prone to bad ideas, and wanderers were likely to get lost.

I believe this is the most heartfelt, tender, and sensual book written by Victoria Schwab. My heart is bursting with emotions ready to spill in this review!

There’s something about the book’s mythology that calls to my heart. I feel myself transported to magical faraway Lands, full of fickle Gods and desperate humans. How it is different from the world we are leaving in; so much more vivid! But when these two worlds mix, you feel as if anything is possible. Turn around a corner and you’ll meet a 300 years old invisible girls and smoke-like angry Gods. Look inside the shadows and you’ll notice they have shape. Devil is such an ordinary word nowadays. It only summons thoughts of Hell and Paradise. But Gods might be hellish or holy and so much more similar to us, humans. And when you try to touch the shadows, they taunt you because they are ephemeral and unreachable.

I am stronger than your god and older than your devil. I am the darkness between stars, and the roots beneath the earth. I am promise, and potential, and when it comes to playing games, i divine the rules, I set the pieces, and I choose when to play.

The invisible life of Addie LaRue definitely takes after Faust and The Age of Adaline movie. But it does not make it any less unique. It is the most beautifully written book by Victoria Schwab – a personal book, where she lays her emotions bare. And it is impossible to stay indifferent.

What is life? Is it a sequence of carefully planned actions? Or is it a pursuit of impressions? Everyone decides for themselves. The author lets us know that there’s no definite answer to this question and no one but you can give the answer. And sometimes it is not an easy task to find one.

What is a person, if not the marks they leave behind?

In a way, this book felt personal to me too. Adaline has lived so many lives, that, inevitably, you find yourself in one of them and marvel at the similarity of it. I believe Victoria Schwab aimed to make us relate to Addie and her story as if we were living her life as well. And we are, through her words.

Stories are a way to preserve one’s self. To be remembered. And to forget.

The only thing that makes me a little bit regretful is that Luc – the God or the Devil(?) – did not get a proper character development he deserved. He had so many shades to color him with but the author chose not to risk by leaving him in shades of grey. I get that, I do! But compared to Henry he feels so much brighter. I really wish Addie could see him as more humane, because to me it was obvious he changed: she changed him, made him more human; not the cold-blooded arrogant god he was when they first met. I wish we had learned more about his background,where he comes from. Compared, Henry feels like a mid step – a human Addie saved but not the one who left a mark on her soul.

And it gladdens me that we’ve got an open ending. That the game of wits between Addie and Luc continues! And maybe, just maybe, one day we will have more of their story. My heart is ready!

You want an ending, then take my life when I am done with it. You can have my soul when I don’t want it anymore.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s