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young adult book reviews & more

Invisible Girl by Mary Hanlon Stone

Invisible GirlStephanie is used to fading into the shadows. At school, she has no friends, preferring the solace of books. At home, things aren’t any better, and Stephanie spends half her time hiding from her drunk and abusive mother. When her mom leaves and her father sends her to live with an old family friend across the country, Stephanie realizes she can no longer be invisible. Everything about her makes her stand out, and not in a good way. Her old clothes, her Bostonian accent, and her naturally darker complexion mark her as almost inferior in the world of wealthy LA blondes. Despite these stark differences, all Stephanie wants is to fit in, but this isn’t so easy for the girl who’s always been by herself. Desperate to find a place where she truly fits in, Stephanie starts to build a web of lies of a fake life. But it’s not until this false bubble bursts and a new girl, who’s more like Stephanie that she would’ve thought, moves to town that Stephanie can move forward just being herself.

Stone delivers an achingly heart wrenching and real coming of age story in her debut Invisible Girl. Readers will immediately connect to main character Stephanie because although not everyone has grown up with domestic abuse, many of Stephanie’s thoughts, fear, and emotions are easy to relate to. Invisible Girl is no doubt an emotionally charged novel because of this. This emotional connection between the reader and Stephanie makes her situation seem all the more heartbreaking, and in turn, the ending all the more uplifting. Stone does a fantastic job of developing Stephanie’s character and portraying her growth. It’s shockingly realistic. There’s just something about this novel that reaches out and grabs the reader’s heart. Even though there are plenty of other books dealing with feelings of inadequacy and being out of place in teens, Invisible Girl still manages to stand out. The fact that Stone is a debut author only makes this feat even greater.

I recommend Invisible Girl to readers who enjoyed Absolutely Maybe by Lisa Yee, Bounce by Natasha Friend, and Love, Meg by C. Leigh Purtill. I look forward to more from this promising debut author.

Rating: 4.5

Review copy from publisher Penguin

2 munch(es) :

Diana Dang said...

Thanks for the great review!

Melissa Walker said...

I need to finish reading this one but what I've read really grabbed me. The writing is excellent, I think!

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