Today I hand over to Mandie who has a review of Jill Child’s Invisible Girl. Thanks to Noelle Holten of Bookouture for inviting us to take part, here is what the book is all about:
About the Book
A heartbreaking story of family secrets from the USA Today bestselling author of Gracie’s Secret. Perfect for fans of Jodi Picoult and Diane Chamberlain.Available From: Amazon | Kobo | Playstore | Apple Books
I know you. I know you in a way you can’t even imagine. I have been searching for you in the years since you wrote that letter – the letter that told me you were looking for me too. But now that I’ve found you, I don’t know if I can tell you the truth of what happened. It would ruin your perfect life. It would risk your beautiful daughter.
So, I watch and I wait – longing to protect you from what’s to come. This morning, you’re running late and your little girl, tugged by the hand, scurries to keep up with you. She’s clean but a little scrawny. Maybe that’s because you struggle with the bills; maybe she’s just made that way.
I know what it is to have lost a precious child. I pray you never learn how that feels. But try as I might to shield you, I can’t hold back the past forever… when I finally tell my secret, will it break you like it did me all those years ago?
Invisible Girl tells its story from three different viewpoints, Maddy a homeless woman and friends Becca and Sarah, single parents who live in the same apartment block, whose daughters attend the same school and are best friends. What starts with a random act of kindness ends up bringing changes to all their lives, bringing up secrets from their past and exposing links between them.
How many times have you walked past someone living on the streets or turned the other way pretending you haven’t seen them… well that’s what Becca used to do until her daughter struck up an odd kind of friendship with Maddy. After Maddy does something unexpected Becca offers her a bed for the night much to the disgust of her son Alex. Maddy then kind of becomes an unofficial member of the family, helping out when needed in exchange for somewhere safe to sleep and a decent meal.
Maddy manages to have small periods in time when she is able to stay sober. She really tries hard for Becca and her family as she senses she is needed and also is a way of redeeming her past sins. For most of the book you get the sense there is a dark reason for her drinking but the full story is not revealed for quite some time. You see her struggles to stay away from her demons but those around Becca are not always helpful as they do not trust her or her motives for being around. One of my favourite things about her is the random quotes from books that she will often be heard saying.
I am not sure about Sarah. She is clearly trying her best for her daughter but her constant justification for her shoplifting did grate on me after a while. She knows that its wrong but she just wants to be able to provide for her family. When she starts to drag Becca’s son into the deception it’s the point where I felt enough was enough. She doesn’t trust Maddy but I think that’s more because she is jealous and afraid that Becca will no longer have time for her or need her as much.
Becca frustrated me at times, purely because she seemed to have very little confidence in herself or her abilities. She had a hard time standing up for herself and was easily led into situations and decisions. She seemed to be focused on her daughter and had lost all connections with her son who seemed to resent everything she did. Rather than tacking this and being the parent she seemed to just let him do what he wanted as it was the easy option. It is only when he gets into some trouble that she finally puts her foot down. This is a story of second chances and trying to find redemption and forgiveness for things in the past. Overall an enjoyable read
About the Author
Jill has always loved writing – real and imaginary – and spent 30 years travelling the world as a journalist, living overseas and reporting wherever the news took her. She’s now made her home in London with her husband and twin girls who love stories as much as she does. Although she’s covered everything from earthquakes and floods, riots and wars, she’s found some of the most extraordinary stories right here at home – in the secrets and lies she imagines behind closed doors on ordinary streets, just like yours.
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