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A Long, Unseen Existence   Leave a comment

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In a small French village in 1714, on the brink of being forced into marriage, Addie LaRue makes a pact with the devil: to live her life without limits with the caveat that she determines when she’ll finally relinquish her soul. The result is a story spanning centuries, with historic events referred to only in passing.

Instead, V.E. Schwab’s The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue highlights Addie’s evolution from a young woman alone who must fend for herself to her realization that no one remembers her from day to day, often hour to hour. Thus, she steals not only to survive, but to thrive – even if she isn’t particularly happy. She never ages, yet she’s lived 400 hundred.

Luc, aka Lucifer, checks in with Addie from time to time to see if she’s ready to finally surrender to him. She dreads these meetings; yet at times they’re also what save her (long) life since he’s the one who transports her from place to another.

Fast forward to New York City 2014 when she meets Henry, a bookseller, who remembers Addie the next day, the day after and many days to come. Thus begins a relationship that endures beyond the one-night stands she’d previously experienced.

Yet, there’s a twist. Henry’s story begins in 2013. (I’ll leave it at that rather than include any spoilers.)

Surprisingly, the narrative isn’t far- fetched. Rather, it’s an engaging love story, a story of regrets, loss and an acknowledgement of what it means to be alive.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

Tom Doherty Associates Books, 2020

444 pages

Four and a-half Bookmarks