Book Review | The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

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.”

On her wedding day, Addie LaRue makes a desperate deal with the darkness in exchange for her soul. Her wish? To never belong to anyone; to be free from obligations, marriage, judgment and society’s watchful eye. Her wish is granted by a devious and omnipotent spector, but as Addie moves around the world she soon realises her wish has been twisted into a curse designed to break and torment her.

Everyone she will ever know will forget her. She will be unable to leave her mark in the world, put down roots, tether herself to another, or even say her own name. However, she will not age, and (even though she feels pain, hunger and loss) she will not die. Her life will only end once she finally agrees to surrender to the darkness.

A defiant Addie drifts across the world for over 300 years. She is homeless and alone but, over the years, she learns to steal, hustle and move in the shadows to survive. She meets artists, poets and musicians throughout history, takes many lovers, learns many languages, and lives through a colourful array of scandals, wars and revolutions.

Of course, the darkness is always watching, taunting and waiting for the day Addie finally surrenders her soul and belongs to him. It takes the shape of a human and moves with her throughout time desperate to break her. For the day she can no longer stand the heartbreak of being forgotten and living like a ghost.

It’s simply a beautifully tragic book. Addie does what she needs to survive. She is flawed and stubborn but incredibly intriguing and endearing. I love how the book blends historical fiction, romance and fantasy into one magical, unique story. It’s one which I will never forget. I simply could not put this book down. Watching Addie weave her way through the world whilst slowly testing the boundaries of her new life and defying the darkness was fascinating. I adored her transformation from a delicate lost soul to a streetwise wayward traveler.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is truly special and has cemented V.E. Schwab as one of my favourite authors and discoveries of 2022.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue is available here. (Affiliate Link)