The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
- Historical Fiction
- Fantasy/Magical realism
- 560 pages
- Goodreads rating: 4.24
I have been putting off reviewing this beautiful piece of art, because I just knew I would never be able to write a review that would do this book justice. I read this book almost 9 months ago and I haven’t found any book that surpasses it yet, nor do I think I ever will. I would probably sell my soul to be able to read it for the first time again (though not to the Gods that answer after dark). But alright, here we go.
“Never pray to the Gods that answer after dark.”V.E. Schwab, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
In the year 1714, a young woman named Adeline LaRue makes a bargain with the devil to be free. From that moment on, though, she is cursed to be forgotten by everyone she meets, as soon as she is out of sight. For 300 years, she walks the earth without being able to leave a single trace, until she walks into a second hand bookshop in New York to exchange the book she just stole from there the day before.
“If you only walk in other people’s steps, you cannot make your own way. You cannot leave a mark.”V.E. Schwab, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue
I have to be honest, I cried throughout most of the book. Every time Addie is forgotten by.someone she has grown to care about, every time she tries to leave a mark on the world that fades away after just a few seconds, every time the devil tells her to give up on life, because nobody will every remember who she is.
This was actually the very first book I read because of Bookstagram. I came across a reel of a girl describing the plot of the book and saying it was the best book she had ever read. She was so passionate about it that I decided to read it too. It was everything I had hoped it would be and more.
It’s a slow-paced story, but it captivated me from the very beginning. The story starts in 1714 with Addie running for her life. From then on it alternates between the past, starting in 1714 and working your way up throughout Addie’s 300 year long life while Addie figures out how her new life works, and the present, where she goes through life stealthy, knowing the exact moment she’ll be forgotten.
I’ve literally never read anything like this, but if I had to compare it to something, it would be the movie The Age of Adaline (the name is probably a coincidence). This is a movie featuring Blake Lively, about a young woman born in 1908, who gets hit by lightning at age 29 and from then on never ages a day again.
Shortly before publishing this book, Victoria Schwab posted on Goodreads the following words: “I can’t believe we made it. Addie spent so many years haunting me, I hope she haunts a few of you.“
Oh Victoria, you have no idea.