The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue <— OMG WHAT AN INCREDIBLY STUNNING & UNIQUE STORY!!!! Tasha J, my “book twin” recommended this one to me (and so did Jackie) and they were SO RIGHT!!! It’s definitely making my “best of 2020” list this year. I highlighted SO much of it, that I have no clue how to pick the best parts to show you here. The WHOLE THING is “the best parts”.
It took me awhile to read it (I just realized now —> just like Tasha did)…
Tasha J: I’m halfway through Addie LaRue. I’ve read a little about everyday, but not as much as I’d like to so it’s taking me longer than I’d hoped. Still, I don’t think it’s the kind of book you binge. For me, it works reading it like this.
YES! I’m right there with you, Tasha on that.
It reads… gently, even though it has a certain intensity the whole way through (the unknown causing me… er… I mean “Addie” distress and loneliness… and elation too). I too, read it slower than my usual pace. But with this one, I’m realizing sometimes it’s okay to read slower, savor the story and the life lessons presented, and since it wasn’t super-fast paced or anything (albeit fascinating the whole way through), it allowed for a more leisurely jaunt from start to finish.
That said… I was always excited to pick it back up, and knowing exactly where I left off, no backtracking needed. I was dying to know how it would end and I’m delighted at where it went. DE. LIGHTED!!!!! 👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼🙃
Tasha J: The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue released today, mine should actually arrive today too!
Maryse: Oooooh!! HOLY MOLY The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue sounds incredible!!!!! I bet that one will be AWESOME. There’s just no doubt.
Tasha J: Right? A deal with the Devil..😈 I have high hopes this one will give me the feels I’m looking for. 🤞
Jackie: I just finished The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue on audio and am absolutely blown away. First off, Julia Whelan does an incredible narration. This is not my genre at all, I tend to steer clear of anything referenced as fantasy, so this took me a bit out of my comfort zone. But what a payoff, hands down the best book I’ve read in quite awhile. It’s a story to get immersed in and just so very different, all the stars-or should I say 7 stars (inside Addie LaRue joke).
Tasha J: I have less than 30 pages of Addie LaRue left and I closed the book cuz I was happy. It was going where I wanted but wasn’t sure it would go and I’m afraid it won’t continue and I’ll be heartbroken and I’m not ready. *wrings hands*
Carrie: I am currently reading this book and absolutely LOVING it!!
Tasha J: I’m still kinda funky over finishing Addie LaRue. I feel so fulfilled, just the perfect read for this time of year and SO beautifully written. The years she spent making this (almost 10) really show. But, I still have feelings and thoughts! I wanna discuss. Lol!
Maryse: Also I’m officially reading Addie LaRue per Tasha’s HUGE love for it, and I’m SO in. IT IS GOOD. Was expensive but *shrug* I think it’s going to be worth it.
Tasha J: Omg yes!!!! We must discuss when you finish.
Maryse: I am LOVING Addie LaRue. That author’s writing is INCREDIBLE.
Tasha J: I love that you’re loving it!!
Maryse: It will be my best of 2020. I AM SURE OF IT. I’m still reading, but am always excited to pick it back up. I AM LIVING IT WITH HER!!!
Lesley: I couldn’t put it down.
P.S. Jackie!!! I finally get the 7 stars “inside Addie LaRue” joke, and I’m with you on that!!!! LOL!!! I was dying to know what you meant by that.
And you know what? I was thinking this one could end possibly three different ways, and one of my guesses was correct (and was the one I wanted most) but that said… OMG it had an extra twist at the very very end that I DID NOT see coming and I found incredibly clever. Yep. Fantastic read from start to finish, even if it was slower paced at times, the writing was off the charts, perfection.
Exquisitely written, layered, and her life experiences and internal monologue really had me thinking. Realizing. And I know quite a few here in our book crew that will LOVE this one HARD.
Maryse: Amy, Tasha found us an amazing book to read, and OMG she is right!!! I’m still reading it so I have no idea where it’s going but I’m hooked!! 😀
Amy: The invisible of Addie Larue? I’ve been eyeing that one and even saved it to my Amazon wish list. I may just splurge and not wait for it to go on sale…
Michele G: Addie LaRue sounds fabulous…
Maryse: YEP!!! That’s the one. IT IS INCREDIBLE. I one-clicked it, price be damned!! It was expensive but there is just SO MUCH to this story, it’s worth it. Once I read that premise I KNEW it was mine.
Maryse: Bev and Jan!!!! I believe the both of you would LOVE The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue. This is an incredible, unique, eloquently written (and so addicting) story going back and forth from the 1700s to the present day (and it follows the same heroine). OMG. READ IT!! Okay back to my book. LOL!!! I just… you guys popped into my head and I had to stop reading to tell you both.
bev: My reading is still iffy, but that sold me. *one click* At least in the tbr.
Maryse: But this one, bev. Trust me. It is QUALITY and gorgeous, and exciting and stressful… and everything we love (you love). I’m sometimes off with my focus these days so I just go one book at a time. But THIS ONE? This is why I read.
Jan: OK thanks Maryse. I’d better try it 😀
So what’s it about?
OKAY FIRST!!! Stop here if our enthusiasm above is enough to convince you to read this. 5 STARS FROM ME!!! If you want to go in completely blind, I say DO IT!!! 😀 It’s refined, polished & perfect (and fun)!!
But… if you want to know more… want a bit of that initial story *oooomph* and what had me hooked, here’s more:
I’m going to say that this definitely is more of a… paranormal story BUT not like what we’ve devoured in the past. The paranormal aspect comes from our heroine making a deal with a “god” (or should I say… more like the devil himself)?Eeeeeep!!! And she was warned, too!!!
Estele’s face darkens. “The old gods may be great, but they are neither kind nor merciful. They are fickle, unsteady as moonlight on water, or shadows in a storm. If you insist on calling them, take heed: be careful what you ask for, be willing to pay the price.”
She leans over Adeline, casting her in shadow. “And no matter how desperate or dire, never pray to the gods that answer after dark.”
Okay so… we’ll start of with our extremely free-spirited and fiercely independent heroine, Adeline LaRue that lives in 1700s France with her family (her loving father, stern mother, her family and friends).
She’s fairly happy, but that all comes to a halt when she realizes she’s pretty much being forced to marry a man she has NO interest in. She is told this is her duty. She feels as if her life is ending. Her freedom and sense of self and adventure and outlook on life… stifled once she marries this person she has no love or attraction for.
A word like a millstone, all weight and no warmth.
Forced to care for him, to bear his children. She becomes despondent. Desperate.
They have given her away.
She lies awake the night before the wedding, and thinks of freedom. Of fleeing. Of stealing away on her father’s horse, even as she knows the thought is madness.
She feels mad enough to do it.
Instead, she prays.
And on her wedding day…
…the church stands waiting, pale and stiff as a tombstone, and she knows that if she walks in, she will not come out.
Her future will rush by the same as her past, only worse, because there will be no freedom, only a marriage bed and a deathbed and perhaps a childbed between, and when she dies it will be as though she never lived.
She flees. Runs far into the woods, and prays and prays with all of her might, and her entire soul… that God might answer her prayers and take her away from her miserable fate. ANYTHING. Whatever needs to be done.
Prays for help, for a miracle, for a way out. And then in the darkest part of night, she prays for Roger’s death—anything for her escape.
She feels guilty at once, sucks it back into her chest like an expelled breath, and waits.
And then a god does answer her.
And Adeline knows, then, that she has made a mistake. That this is one of the gods she was warned against.
*oooooomph* And so the deal begins… for the next 300 years, right into our present day.
“Well now,” he says, “you have called, and I have come.”
Never pray to the gods that answer after dark.
Adeline knows—she knows—but this is the only one who answered. The only one who would help.
“Are you prepared to pay?”
And here we are… only 8% into this tale…. AND WHAT A TALE IT IS!!!!!!!
BUT BUT BUT!!!!! You haven’t even heard the BEST PART!!!! The “devil’s/god’s loop hole” that she has to face for the rest of her “life”. The whole “be careful what you wish for…” is in FULL EFFECT here. I’ll let you discover exactly what it is, on your own.
Now… IF YOU WANT TO GO IN TO THIS BLINDER then what I’ve already included, SKIP THE NEXT PART BELOW (even though it’s all in the book synopsis, if you haven’t yet read the book blurb on Amazon yet, no need to read further below).
But if you’re okay with knowing as much as what is already in the synopsis… please proceed. 😉
Okay fine… I’ll tell you since 😉 it’s pretty much in the first couple of lines of the synopsis:
“…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…”
HOLY. MOLY. FAN-FREAKING-TASTIC!
She hates this part. She shouldn’t have lingered. Should have been out of sight as well as out of mind, but there’s always that nagging hope that this time, it will be different, that this time, they will remember.
I remember, says the darkness in her ear.
And while it went back and forth from her past (and I mean WAYYYYYY past – like 300 years ago) to her modern life today, the back and forth didn’t distract me. It showed me how much she learned through her years and the circumstances of having to learn to live this way.
She looks back, and says, “Don’t forget me in the meantime.”
An old habit. A superstition. A plea.
How she adapted, and tricks she learned… and yet haunted every step of the way.
She will come back to this moment a thousand times.
In frustration, and regret, in sorrow, and self-pity, and unbridled rage.
She will come to face the fact that she cursed herself before he ever did.
And then she meets… him.
This one has so much of what I love in a story. A determined, strong yet vulnerable heroine, looking for happiness. Looking for peace. Looking for love. And there IS love. Maybe… dare I say? Even a love triangle of sorts?
How can that be? You’ll see. 😉
And I’m going to stop there.
5 STARS!!!!! <— Thought provoking, deeply profound, heartfelt, at times terrifying, but always ALWAYS captivating. Everyone needs to snuggle up with this one and read it to their heart’s content… at whatever pace it compels you to. You will be thinking about it for days (maybe even weeks?). Maybe even forever after. I know I will. It’s simply unforgettable. Especially the very very end. *my lips are sealed* DON’T PEEK!!!!
This is the problem with a life like Addie’s. She has gone so long without roots, she doesn’t know how to grow them anymore.
So used to losing things, she isn’t sure how to hold them.
How to make space in a world the size of herself.
P.S. I MUST read more by this author. Incredible story-telling!!!!
➔➔➔ Looking for more of my must-read recommendations? Browse my 5 star and 4.5 star and 4 star reviews. 😀
Great review! So glad that it lived up to my gushing. There’s just something to be said for a book that transports you to another time and place, that’s unlike anything you’ve read before and one that is just so hard to forget. Easily my favorite of the year.
Thank you so much Jackie for telling me about this book. It was perfect!!!! 😀
If you find anything else that you loved like crazy, please let me know.
I’ve been on Wait List for Addie LaRue- on Overdrive. I have 9 weeks to go. I’m going for the audio since Julia Whelan narrates (she’s a narration goddess). I will probably get the paperback or hardback book too. I may just use one of my Audible credits for the audio since #1 I don’t want to wait anymore & #2 I know that I’ll love it. PS, I skimmed your great review, since I want to be surprised!
A top read in 2020! I needed some time afterward to take it in & breathe again.