Thank you Ksenia for the beautiful gift of Sedgwick books. He is becoming a favorite.
I read this with Jen from Starry-Eyed Revue. Check out her review here.
Laureth Peak’s father has taught her to look for recurring events, patterns, and numbers–a skill at which she’s remarkably talented. Her secret: She is blind. But when her father goes missing, Laureth and her 7-year-old brother Benjamin are thrust into a mystery that takes them to New York City where surviving will take all her skill at spotting the amazing, shocking, and sometimes dangerous connections in a world full of darkness. She Is Not Invisible is an intricate puzzle of a novel that sheds a light on the delicate ties that bind people to each other.
She Is Not Invisible was my first Sedgwick book and I’ll admit I was a tad nervous beginning it just because I’d heard so much hype about Sedgwick’s writing prowess. I wondered if I’d be able to connect to his writing style. I have no clue where this feeling of mine came from but from page one of SiNI I was assured that I would easily connect to this book and the characters.
I loved Sedgwick’s writing and the little bits of humor he snuck in here and there. The book was highly absorbing and fast paced. I was swept away in the mystery of where Laureth’s father was and his research into coincidences. I easily felt her emotions as she traversed a world she couldn’t see. I loved that Sedgwick chose to write Laureth as a blind person because it added an element and point of view I’ve not read from before. Reading from Laureth’s view point and the obstacles she faced had me sitting back thinking of the ease at which I do things. Her interactions with other people had me questioning how we treat others with differing life experiences. I loved that this novel had me thinking about these things.
Her little brother, Ben, was adorable and very accurate of a seven year old to me. I was immediately connected and fell in love with both of them and their realistic relationship with each other. And, I would be remiss not to mention Stan, Ben’s stuffed raven. I loved how Ben interacted with him and he really felt like an additional character. My son has a stuffed animal that he personifies and has a deep connection too. Ben reminded me of an older version of my son so that increased my connection to him and the story.
Sedgwick was capable of creating an urgency and fear in me as I read that kept me flipping pages and honestly worried as I read. I will say that some elements, like the ease in which a sixteen year old girl and seven year old were able to get through New York’s airport and customs was a tad far fetched. Though, to be fair, I’ve not ever been through customs so I have zero experience or room to speculate on how adamant they are on paperwork, etc.
Another thing I absolutely loved were the excerpts from their father’s upcoming book. I loved glimpsing into his fascinating, though obsessive, research about coincidences. I’ve not pondered the question of coincendence very often so loved that this book opened questions for me. Their father has a number that seems to follow him and I actually have one as well. One of those things that I tend to always look at the clock and it reads 9:23. These series of numbers have turned up more often for me for years but I’ve never given it deep thought. Sedgwick added little historical elements that had me pause mid-reading to look a couple things up I was so interested. These little philosophical tid-bits were welcomed and added immensely to an already rich story.
Though the writing was strong and the build-up intense the conclusion was a bit anti-climatic. The villains ended up being fairly comical and not nearly as deranged or threatening as my mind had imagined. I expected a bit more but honestly I felt the ending was adequate. Another element that seemed a bit random to me was Ben’s special gift. Since it was so lightly explored it had the feel of a plot device at times.
Sedgwick’s writing was beautiful and moving. I was immediately attached and empathetic towards his well rounded cast of primary characters and found the book to be fast paced and absorbing. The research and questions raised on coincidences had me intrigued and doing my own research.
Question for you–Have you had a number that seems to turn up more often? Have you ever given much thought about coincidences and do you ever see meaning in them?