the invisibles book coverReviewed by Neriza Alba

The Invisibles is about a group of four friends who met at Turning Winds, a home for girls. Despite the fact that they came from different backgrounds of abuse, they relied on each other while at the home. They held a meeting every full moon to talk about their wishes, dreams, and to remind themselves that they chose to remain invisible to everyone except each other.

After high school graduation, everyone except Nora leaves the town they grew up in. Not hearing from any of them for 15 years, Nora is surprised to get a call begging her to meet them in Chicago. One of them is battling depression and just tried to kill herself. She is requesting for the rest of the Invisibles to visit her for the weekend.

When they get together again, Nora realizes just how much everyone has changed, drilling in her the feeling that she alone got stuck, still living in the past. Fond memories are recalled and success stories are exchanged; everything seems to have gone right for the group. However, as the four women spend more time together, each one of them can see that they are all still struggling with the same old demon that brought them to Turning Winds. To be completely free, they need to face their demon and just like before, the Invisibles need to rely on each other to do it.

In a genre that is very flooded with story lines of groups of women held by a common bond, Cecilia Galante provides a fresh and ardent voice. The narration is seamless, and the flashbacks show the palpable connection between their past and present. It is also refreshing that Galante did not focus on revenge, but instead she created really strong, inspiring characters who just want to have a different life, despite their flaws and mistakes.

The characterization of Nora, the main protagonist, was solid, and I like that Gallante treated both Turning Winds and the full moon as characters.  However, I do wish that the characterization of the other three women was deeper. The book is written in a third person narrative but Nora’s development is noticeably more profound than the rest. It does not make the story less engaging, but I found myself constantly looking for it as I read through the chapters.

I adore the clever background on how the title came about. It will not be a spoiler if I mention it, but for avid readers, finding it out will bring a satisfied smile to your face. It did for me, and I’d rather not take that experience away from any reader.

Friendship and forgiveness. These are the main themes in the book. A friendship that lasts a lifetime and forgiveness, not just for others, but for ourselves. These universal themes make this book an inviting read for everyone. It will be worth your while.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Neriza Alba works a regular 9-to-5 job in Stockholm where she resides with her husband. In addition to reading, she enjoys travelling and curling up with a glass of good wine.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by William Morrow Paperbacks. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.