November 15, 2013

Reviewing... [45] She Is Not Invisible

Reviewing... [45]
Recommended for: Literally anyone who likes YA books which easily discuss a more mature topic (it still seems very YA though!)
Author: Marcus Sedgwick
Source: Received for review cos of some fiercely epic publicists! 

Just a book that is so thought-provoking and mature that it becomes "loveable". I'm not using that term condescendingly & I'm sure Laureth would understand if I called her that, or sweet. There are many words that describe this young woman who is brave, visually impaired & who has one of the strong personalities we would all love to have but which only come from experience. We discover that, of course, she's victim to some prejudice. It's becoming a more common form in fiction & this stance- on how people like Laureth might try and hide their "blindness" as they know they'll be judged- is amazing & unique. Books about discrimination or intolerance of any form often are really eye-opening. Pun, noted? (Sorry! It was appropriate for this book...)
Don't be like that. You got the joke (sorry, I didn't laugh either but... still!) and you'll get this book. You don't have to have been blind to get it. Marcus Sedgwick wasn't blind. It took research but it's explained well. This latest novel (by Marcus Sedgwick, not of all the books EVER) isn't the most startling... but it's a 1-in-all-the-books-EVER. All those elements... just GAH. Perfect: many elements of a fantastic novel which most people will recommend make up this novel. I'm one of them, shouting: READ IT. UNDERSTAND IT. LOVE IT. Why should you read this? 
There's a quirk to 'She Is Not Invisible' that I can't quite put my fingers on. It may be the characters, I've already mentioned Laureth but I appreciated the cast. From Benjamin to the equally strange young person who inspired Laureth on her hunt for her father. It all started with a notebook. It seems really unbelievable but it's an important book which is part of a much more important, now published by Indigo (which you should now go and read), book about... coincidence. How the things tied in, Sedgwick is literally a genius (and I can believe he struggled, like Peak did, with writing about certain things!). This book just ends up tying up all the loose ends but somehow, it still left with me things to think about.
There's Benjamin (and Stan, I suppose). An endearing kid who is literally Laureth's "eyes". In some ways, he looks after her but also she has to look after him. It's strange being in New York for anyone but these two? How they actually manage to spend time NOT walking around like a headless chicken is interesting. They do have a sense of place though & a mission... A mission which means you don't just stand their gobsmacked. They don't have the option to just get back on the next plane to England (they could, but obviously they don't! Duh!) There's plenty to think about just in that...
So, I know, SINI is of great interest to many readers, I'm sure. 
It's thoughtful. That's the thing about this book. I won't lie, it's not the most intense book. Books don't need to be action-packed; they can still have some punches. There's an adventure which is hard and has to be done by young people. Alone. They're saving an adult and this will engage many. The family relationship is interesting, from the first chapter. Mrs Peak, what a poor mother! I tell you, if someone suggested I do that to either of my parents I'd think they were insane. But it works for them.
How, especially, can they do it when Laureth, the oldest, is blind & essentially relying on her brother who she's almost kidnapped? Technology keeps breaking & it's intense as they got lost. At some points it's almost like they're not going to achieve what they set out to do. How can they?
I'm pleased with the revelations; there was real character & story development in good measures. Perfect (pretend I haven't said that already, it's just the word I think suits it).
(OK, I kinda lied, but I don't know why)

Amy Bookworm (@Amy_Bookworm) rated this book: 
You will find out if you read it. I really think you should :D

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