Few things evoke simultaneous joy and anxiety like learning you’ve won your choice of any title from an author’s catalog. Yaaaaay, new book! Aaaaargh, how in the world do you pick?? After literal hours of dithering (the only easy part was ruling out that one book I’d already bought/reviewed here; beyond that, dither fest), I made my choice. How’d that work out for me? Well, as you ask…
Genre: YA Sci-Fi
Blurb: Plenty of teenagers feel invisible. Fiona McClean actually is.
An invisible girl is a priceless weapon. Fiona’s own father has been forcing her to do his dirty work for years—everything from spying on people to stealing cars to breaking into bank vaults.
After sixteen years, Fiona’s had enough. She and her mother flee to a small town, and for the first time in her life, Fiona feels like a normal life is within reach. But Fiona’s father isn’t giving up that easily.
Of course, he should know better than anyone: never underestimate an invisible girl.
My Thoughts: *pats self on back* Good pick, Me. I enjoyed this one!
While a tricked-out premise like an invisible teen with a crime boss father in a super-powered world would make it easy enough to go the action movie route – something cool and explosive, with maybe less going on in the area of character development – I was pleasantly surprised by the story’s emotional depth. Fiona’s feelings came across as real in a way that made a lot of sense, given the look we get into her completely messed-up life. The tangible signs of trauma were there in even the little things, like spooking when a bird flew overhead (she had good reason, guys), garnering her a healthy number of “sympathetic character” points – always good to have in a narrating protagonist.
Shout-out, also, to the supporting cast – and a supportive bunch they were, too. You never know what you’re going to get when gorgeous high-schoolers show up in the pages, but no one in this novel rested on anything as one-dimensional as a pretty face. I loved the group dynamic they had going on, made up of equal parts caring and crazy, and admit to feeling a tad jealous that I don’t get to hang out with them.
Meanwhile, I got to worry right along with Fiona about the ever-looming threat of her creeper father, and quite possibly the brother who got his share of dear old Dad’s creeper genes. Considering how easily I get distracted while reading, this book did a great job of making me want to keep the pages turning. And interspersed with the tension were some moments so sweet, I had to smile aloud. (Yes. Smile aloud. That was my face’s story, and I’m sticking to it.)
HSYRT? (Hey, Should You Read This?): I’m glad I gave “Transparent” a try. I hope you guys are inspired to do the same!