Girl meets boy. Boy forgets girl. Repeat for 300 years. Until one day…

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

Hardcover, 448 pages
Published October 6, 2020 by Tor Books 
Reviewed by Katherine Valdez

In 1714 France, 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.

A life no one will remember. A story you will never forget.

Book Jacket
“Never pray to the gods that answer after dark.”

Opening sentence
A girl is running for her life.

What’s Different

  • The premise. Freedom has a high price.
  • The interstitials consist of artwork descriptions, as though from a museum exhibit or auction house catalog. (Saying anything more would constitute a spoiler.)
  • The supernatural being Addie refers to as “the darkness,” which reveals itself only as a handsome man with glittering green eyes, has a surprising secret of his own.

What’s Awesome

  • Literary fiction-style writing with a fast pace and compelling story. You know how some literary novels are super slow with ambiguous endings that leave you thinking, “That’s it? Not Addie LaRue. This epic story will satisfy.
  • As with other protagonists conjured by V.E. Schwab (Lila Bard fan club, anyone?), Addie LaRue proves intelligent, tough, and resourceful. To readers, she’s unforgettable.
  • LGTBQIA+ characters, and no one blinks an eye. Although there is one mention of a character not wanting to mention their sexual orientation to their parents because they might not understand. Realistic.

What Others Say
“Victoria Schwab sends you whirling through a dizzying kaleidoscopic adventure through centuries filled with love, loss, art, and war  all the while dazzling your senses with hundreds of tiny magical moments along the way.” — Naomi Novik

Excerpt from Part Three

Addie’s throat tightens.

“Do you think a life has any value if one doesn’t leave some mark upon the world?”

Remy’s expression sobers and he must read the sadness in her voice, because he says, “I think there are many ways to matter.” He plucks the book from his pocket. “These are the words of a man–Voltaire. But they are also the hands that set the type. The ink that made it readable, the tree that made the paper. All of them matter, though credit goes only to the name on the cover.”

About The Author
Victoria “V.E.” Schwab is the #1 New York bestselling author of more than 20 books, including the Shades of Magic series. Her work has received critical acclaim; been featured in The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, The Washington Post, and more; been translated into more than a dozen languages; and been optioned for television and film.

When she’s not haunting Paris streets or trudging up English hillsides, she lives in Edinburgh, Scotland, and is usually tucked in the corner of a coffee shop, dreaming up monsters.

Visit her at

Twitter: @veschwab
Instagram: @veschwab

Read my blog post about V.E. Schwab’s visit to Colorado: Part 1 and Part 2.

This post was later published at Secrets of Best-Selling Authors:


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