Unpopular Opinion : The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E Schwab. Audiobook Review #AudiobookChallenge2020

Synopsis

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.

But everything changes when, after nearly 300 years, Addie stumbles across a young man in a hidden bookstore and he remembers her name.

 

Audiobook Review

3 stars

I loved the opening and the ending. But the author lost me in the middle.

 

I so wanted to love that hyper hyped book!           

Yet even if the prose is beautiful I could not for the love of god, fall into the story and hurt with the main characters. One of the problems was probably the choice to write that story from a third POV. That always makes it difficult for me to connect with the character’s feelings. It’s similar to keeping me at arm’s length.

 

The opening was interesting and compelling. Adeline didn’t want to fall under a man’s rule in the France of 18th century and she’ll make a pact with the darkness/devil. Who could blame her for wanting to escape her small live and leave the expected path?

She will be free, have immortality but of course there is a caveat in her bargain that she’ll soon realize.

She will never be remembered nor will she leave a mark.

Each time someone closed a door on her, she was forgotten. Addie is cursed and she roams the earth for more than 300 years. Very lonely except for some visits from the Darkness. He is her tormentor yet the one she wants to see as he is remembering her.

 

One day in the future, she’ll meet Henry, a man who will remember her.

 

The story switch between past story arc and present.

In the past, we follow different cameos of Addie’s life. If reading about past centuries and events is interesting, it became quite repetitive as all scenarios ended up with Addie being forgotten.

She didn’t seem to grow up much either, staying stubbornly in the same state of mind.

 

Going back and forth from past to present timeline, with past stories without a progressing story arc but rather repetitive variations of the same scenario became quickly boring.

I am one of those readers who love following one story and watching how it will unfurl to reach its conclusion. Not putting on hold one side of the story then get back later. That just makes me impatient at some point.

 

Another element that did not work for me where the characters.

I don’t know why, maybe it’s the choice of the omniscient narrator or the third POV but I never cared deeply for Addie’s life.

I could logically understand that her predicament was quite tragic and sad but I didn’t FEEL it in my bones.

 

I would say that if that book has an outstanding and lush prose, an imaginative premise and story ARC, it simply didn’t work for me nor ever touched me as it should.

Now I am clearly in the minority here as that book is a huge hit among readers so it really is a case of personal taste and certainly not a lack of talent. I’d advise you to make your own opinion.

Have you read that book? What did you think of it?

Thanks for reading.

Sophie

Please follow and like us:

22 Replies to “Unpopular Opinion : The Invisible Life of Addie Larue by V.E Schwab. Audiobook Review #AudiobookChallenge2020”

  1. “unpopular opinion” going in I literally didn’t know whether you were going to say you loved it or hated it, and then it was 3*! Definitely unpopular! Hahaha

  2. Great review, Sophie! I agree with you on the repeated scenario being boring. And also I found the Devil’s character more interesting than Henry’s.

  3. I read Addie a few weeks ago and really loved it. But I can understand why some people don’t. We all have different tastes. 🙂 I loved the unusual perspective, and I really felt for Addie all the way through the story.

  4. I always have a hard time enjoying a book if I can’t connect to the character. Except one Katrina Halle book, I still enjoyed that one wheee. But that premise of going back and forth doesn’t sound exciting at all. Sorry Sophie this one was a let down, here’s hoping the next book you pick up is a billion times better!

  5. I’ve never read anything by Schwab but the synopsis of this one caught my eye a while back. And I’ve seen plenty of rave reviews. But this is a perfect example of not every book is for every reader. I think the repetitive nature would get to me, as well, and it doesn’t seem like the choice for a third person POV was a wise one.

  6. Em @ The Geeky Jock says: Reply

    Aw 🙁 Sorry to hear it wasn’t a hit. I can see your point regarding the middle (definitely lengthy) and Addie’s character … For me: I definitely couldn’t relate with the successive series of one-night flings (do people actually do that? for real?) … and, the fact that Addie very much behaved like a 23-year-old even after 300 years of experience (where’s the accumulation of wisdom?).

    BUT … all that said, I very much fell in love with this book. It’s my favourite of 2020, possibly ever. I found the prose breathtaking … and, flings aside, could very much relate to both Henry and Addie. They’re pretty much situated where I am right now. Parts felt like reading a mirror.

  7. Haha, yes, I have mostly seen very positive reviews for this book and I loved it too. But your concerns are very valid, and what a boring world it would be if all loved the same books right? 😀

    1. Exactly Mogsy! I do enjoy reviews from books I loved but other readers didn’t. It makes for interesting discussions!

  8. I’ve never read a book by this author but I will be disappointing if it’ll be less than 4 stars for me because I love dual timelines and it just sounds so amazing. But it’s of course always possible it’ll fall a little flat. That’s the thing with hyped books.

    1. Honestly if dual timelines is your jam I think you’ll love it Stephanie!

  9. Sounds like she made a bargain with the devil. Too bad the writer failed to connect as it’s an interesting premise.

    1. Exactly Jacquie!

  10. Oh no! But can’t love them all!

  11. thebrowneyedbookworm says: Reply

    no, it did not , either way I wanted to say that you got me at unpopular opinion – lol! Also, whenever I get to the audiobook I wouldn’t be surprised if I feel the same. I’m not her biggest fan, and hyped books often give me hives – haha.

    ~ Corina | TheBrownEyedBookworm.com

    1. The audiobook did not make it easy either Corina as the narrator is very …calm??

      1. thebrowneyedbookworm says: Reply

        Oh boy, I hope it doesn’t turn into an instant sleeping pill

  12. thebrowneyedbookworm says: Reply

    Sophie, did my earlier comment go through?

  13. I loved this book, but I see your concerns. It is a slow paced book and I know some readers didn’t like that

    1. Yes I realized slow does not really work for me Tammy 😉

  14. One of those books I have no desire to read, ever. And it comes with so many mixed reviews, those that loved it and those, like yourself, that saw one too many flaws with the characters and story. Just not my kind of read.

    1. Well Alex I don’t think you’d like it indeed!

Let's talk!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.