invisible girl lisa jewell
Book Review / Lisa Jewell / Reviews with Spoilers

Lisa Jewell | Invisible Girl

invisible girl lisa jewell

The Book: 

Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewell, 2020

The Characters: 

Married couple Cate and Roan Fours, their children Georgia and Josh
Owen Pick, their neighbor
Saffyre Maddox, one of Roan’s patients

Rating: 4 out of 5.

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The Plot (from Goodreads):

Owen Pick’s life is falling apart. In his thirties, a virgin, and living in his aunt’s spare bedroom, he has just been suspended from his job as a geography teacher after accusations of sexual misconduct, which he strongly denies. Searching for professional advice online, he is inadvertently sucked into the dark world of incel—involuntary celibate—forums, where he meets the charismatic, mysterious, and sinister Bryn.

Across the street from Owen lives the Fours family, headed by mom Cate, a physiotherapist, and dad Roan, a child psychologist. But the Fours family have a bad feeling about their neighbor Owen. He’s a bit creepy and their teenage daughter swears he followed her home from the train station one night.

Meanwhile, young Saffyre Maddox spent three years as a patient of Roan Fours. Feeling abandoned when their therapy ends, she searches for other ways to maintain her connection with him, following him in the shadows and learning more than she wanted to know about Roan and his family. Then, on Valentine’s night, Saffyre Maddox disappears—and the last person to see her alive is Owen Pick.

Click here for book spoilers for Invisible Girl
Book spoilers ahead–if you haven’t yet read Invisible Girl, I suggest you turn back now.

The Twist:

 Saffyre was fine, just hiding. When she was a child, she was sexually assaulted by Harrison John, a boy a little older than her. He still lived in the area and was the one assaulting women. Saffyre figured this out and was trying to track him down. Saffyre and Josh became friends, and Saffyre was helping him keep an eye on Alicia, his dad’s mistress. 

On Valentine’s day, Alicia came to the Fours’ house drunk and yelling at Roan. Saffyre was nearby and watched as Roan hit her and told her to leave. She followed Alicia to make sure she was okay. Just as she caught up to Alicia, Harrison John was sneaking up on her to assault her. Saffyre broke Harrison’s fingers, and she and Alicia escaped. 

They went back to Alicia’s house, where Saffyre spent the night. She told Alicia all about Harrison John, and how she was terrified that he would kill her if he ever saw her again. Saffyre called Josh and told him to track down Harrison John and get him arrested. 

Harrison John was arrested for an assault on another girl and found to be Bryn, the person who had sold Owen the date rape drugs. Saffyre came out of hiding once he was in custody. 

The Ending:

Owen was exonerated. He attended sexual conduct training and was allowed to get his job back. He also got back together with the girl he had been on a date with before all of this started. 

Cait finally left Roan.

The Review: 

I loved these characters. I thought I was going to hate Saffyre at the beginning, but she turned out to be a badass but also a sweet little girl. Actually, my opinions of almost all of the characters changed from the beginning to the end of the book. I thought all of them were very well done for their purpose. 

This is the first book I’ve read that explicitly defines a character as an “incel”. This can be a delicate topic, and I believe Lisa Jewell handles it well. She shows how dangerous and misguided “incel culture” can be, while also acknowledging that men can easily be unfairly lumped into this category. I was glad that the book didn’t celebrate these groups in any way. I found that the book thoughtfully examined toxic masculinity while not letting it overpower the story. 

The plot isn’t quite as…well, thrilling…as some of Lisa Jewell’s other books, but I enjoyed it. The creepiest part was that these things happen on a daily basis in every city in the world, which is a terrible but true thought. In this case, the realisticness of the plot made it scarier. 

This wasn’t my favorite book by this author, but I enjoyed it, was entertained, and was satisfied by the ending. 

Check out my reviews of Lisa Jewell’s other books: 

This was a Book of the Month pick last month. Haven’t checked out Book of the Month yet? Use my code for $10 off your first box. (I get a $10 credit too, but that means more reviews for me to share with you!)

invisible girl lisa jewell
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