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She Is Not Invisible Hardcover – 3 Oct 2013
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Thought provoking (South Wales Evening Post)
What this book proves, is that Marcus is not only one of the greatest British YA writers, but one of the most versatile too. Unlike anything he has written before and a book that will reach a whole new audience. Bloomin' loved it. (Phil Earle, author of HEROIC, BEING BILLY and SAVING DAISY)
I was thoroughly captivated by this smart and intriguing contemporary thriller with heart. (Fiona Noble THE BOOKSELLER)
She is Not Invisible is an exciting, thought-provoking story - a Scarlett Thomas or A. L. Kennedy for teenagers. (Anna A CASE FOR BOOKS)
There's another uncompromising aspect to this superb book. Marcus Sedgwick doesn't speak down to his teen readers. He tells it how it is, without footnotes or gloss, and it's up to the reader to decide how much they want to take from his books. A rollicking good adventure? No problem - that's there and easily available. Just let your eyes slide across the bits in italics and jump to the next event. It would be a shame to do that, though, because for those prepared to deal with it, there's much, much more in this book: theories and philosophies and ideas which stretch the reader and give the adventure far greater depth and resonance. Not many novels, for adults or younger folk, contain whole pages of notes on people such as Einstein, Jung and Koestler, but this one does, because it shows what Jack Peak believes on the nature of coincidence, and it is by understanding that that Laureth and Benjamin (with the help of Stan the stuffed raven) resolve the crisis. (THE BOOKBAG)
Marcus Sedgwick has written a story which really makes you think. He has referred to it as an iceberg and certainly the story can be read on two levels; on the surface a simple story of a girl, Laureth, accompanied by her young brother, Ben and his beloved soft toy, Stan, determined to find their missing father, in spite of Laureth's personal circumstances making this no easy task and, below the surface, a much more complicated story, concerning the nature of obsession and coincidence; all of which leaves you pondering and re-reading. Familial relationships are at the heart of this story and how these can engender love, confidence and faith. Laureth is awe inspiring and loveable. Her personal journey is totally absorbing. (Gill Perry at Exeter High Street WATERSTONES.COM)
This is a book about coincidences, unconditional love and bravery. It is also about going with a gut feeling against the odds and the chance that just perhaps it will all come right in the end. Stannous and Ben are, perhaps, my favourite characters, often positive when life gets tough and understanding what it means to be needed. The story revolves around Laureth's father, a search across New York for a character who is missing and the mutual support between two siblings. This is an extraordinary tale, with brilliant descriptive passages. You can almost hear and smell New York. I was relieved that Stannous made it home... (Sue Chambers at Finchley Road WATERSTONES.COM)
Sedgwick's prose is as crisp and clear as always, without losing a single fathom of emotional depth, and Laureth and Benjamin will resonate soundly with anyone who has ever negotiated the ups and downs of sibling relationships. (Rebecca Davies THE INDEPENDENT: CHILDREN'S BOOKS BLOG)
Despite being 'about' a blind girl, this is not a book about being blind. It doesn't seek to induce pity and nor does it resort to awarding its protagonist superhuman powers. Yet along the way it succeeds in very cleverly and subtly telling the reader a huge amount about being visually impaired. (BOOKTRUST)
Marcus Sedgwick doesn't speak down to his teen readers. He tells it how it is, without footnotes or gloss, and it's up to the reader to decide how much they want to take from his books. A rollicking good adventure? No problem - that's there and easily available. Just let your eyes slide across the bits in italics and jump to the next event. It would be a shame to do that, though, because for those prepared to deal with it, there's much, much more in this booK: theories and philosophies and ideas which stretch the reader and give the adventure far greater depth and resonance. Not many novels, for adults or younger folk, contain whole pages of notes on people such as Einstein, Jung and Koestler, but this one does, because it shows what Jack Peak believes on the nature of coincidence, and it is by understanding that that Laureth and Benjamin (with the help of Stan the stuffed raven) resolve the crisis. (THE BOOKBAG)
His small cast are marvellous in emotion, dialogue and humour. Each and every action, no matter how far-fetched, feels entirely natural. The plot points could easily feel forced but in these hands they flow naturally. Another subtle beauty of the novel is what you experience when the novel is finished as it suddenly reveals many small details that could be overlooked. As they are revealed the wonder of the novel strengthens and becomes something special and different. I found myself comparing the book to the very successful novel, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. They share similarities, themes and quality of prose. From the big apple setting to the affected protagonists to the nuances in the structure and formatting of the book the two books are closely bonded, but yet enjoy a wide difference in storytelling feel. (UTTER BIBLIO)
The author hasn't just provided you with a fast paced thriller, but he has also left you with ideas and puzzles to decipher. I challenge you not to come away from this book searching out the coincidences that occur in your life. I will definitely be recommending this book highly in the future as it stands out from the other YA books around at the moment. (SERENDIPITY REVIEWS)
But beyond the mere appreciation for the type of story this book tells, She Is Not Invisible is a beautifully written story that encapsulates so much. From her touching relationship with her young brother and the way they work as a duo to the way she interacts with the world - and how the world reacts to her. Or the way that story is told in a non-linear narrative because that's how Laureth thinks. (BOOKSMUGGLERS)
When sixteen-year-old Laureth's father vanishes she is determined to track him down. So determined that she flies to New York to find him. But Laureth doesn't go alone; she takes her seven year old brother with her because she needs him. Laureth is blind and Benjamin is essential as her guide. Award-winning Marcus Sedgwick tells a pell-mell adventure as the children unravel the mysteries of obsession and coincidence as they solve the riddle behind their father's disappearance. (Julia Eccleshare LOVEREADING)
It's a rollercoaster of a thriller that explores love, trust, courage and challenges. (CHOICE)
The message is a moving one: be kind to strangers, because the person who bumps into you might have a mountain to overcome. (FINANCIAL TIMES)
This is a novel that demands to be read more than once because it is only at the conclusion of the seven interlinked episodic stories that the complexity of the novel's extraordinary story of doomed love becomes clear... Sedgwick is a fine writer and this hugely atmospheric and demanding book will satisfy adults too. (Sally Morris THE DAILY MAIL)
Set in London and Manhattan, prize-winning author Marcus Sedgwick explores obsession, trust and coincidence in a page-turning thriller about Laureth Peak's mission to find her missing father.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
There are so many layers to this deceptively simple story. Jack Peak is obsessed with the nature of coincidence in our daily lives and as you follow Laureth and Benjamin on their journey you find yourself pondering the same issues. Do we manufacture our own destiny or is it predetermined? Laureth is certainly determined to make her own mark on the world and is most certainly not invisible. She and Benjamin make an excellent team with superhero qualities, Batman and Robin spring to mind. I loved the way they worked together as one, along with Benjamin's trusty sidekick, Stan the crow! So many questions are raised and happily they aren't all answered and neatly tied up with a pretty bow.
This is a novel which makes you think, not just about the nature of coincidence but about family relationships, about what it is like to be different, about what influences our path in life. A highly recommended read for anyone with an inquiring mind. If you enjoyed The London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd or The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon you'll love this.
The story concerns sixteen-year-old Laureth who, perhaps slightly implausibly, runs off to New York to look for her father with her seven-year-old brother Benjamin (and his toy raven) in tow. I say "in tow," but that's not really accurate; I hadn't read the blurb on this page before reading the book, so the reason why Laureth needs to take Benjamin with her emerged, brilliantly I thought, from the story. You may already know, but for me it would have been a spoiler and, just in case, I won't say more. Their adventures and discoveries over the couple of days that follow are very well told by Laureth herself who makes a thoroughly believable and engaging narrator and they held me gripped throughout.
As well as being a cracking story, this book has important things to say about disability and people's attitudes to it, how families interact and their importance and - subtly, just once but very tellingly - about race. There is also some very good, thoughtful and intelligent stuff about the nature of coincidences and what they mean or don't. It is genuinely funny in places, too. One passage about how Laureth and Stan the toy raven got their names, for example, made me smile throughout and laugh out loud at its end.
This book is for "young adults" and I am sure any intelligent young adult would love it, but this not-young-at-all adult thought it was terrific, too. I read it in a couple of sittings, I really didn't want to put it down and it has left me with things to think about, too. It's a really enjoyable, intelligent read and I recommend it very warmly.
Skipping around in time, we find ourselves at the airport with Laureth, 16, abducting her 7-year-old brother Benjamin and his toy raven Stan. They are travelling to New York to find their missing father. jack Peak is a popular writer, once known for his funny books, now obsessed with the subject of coincidence and the number 354. It might be a straightforward 'quest' story, but it's not. Laureth is blind. She needs Benjamin to be her eyes on their journey. She has no idea where her father is in the city, only that his writer's notebook has been found there and a reward sought, starting Laureth's determination to find her dad.
It's one of those books that's hard to describe. To describe in any more detail the plot would spoil the marvellous events that happen. We get to see Jack Peak's notes as Laureth and Benjamin try to piece together clues as to his whereabouts. We also get little insights into Laureth's dark world and how she copes with it.
It's a very entertaining read that had me racing to finish in a day. I really admire the ideas and writing of Sedgwick, each book completely different. This would be a superb book for a teenage Book Club to discuss (and comes with ready made readers' notes in the back).
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Most recent customer reviews
Some synopses of She Is Not Invisible tell you that Laureth Peak is blind,...Read more
Choice comments: “Suspenseful, if highly unlikely. Good to have such an unusual protagonist.” “As young adult fiction, a good story and characters”