Amanda's Reviews > If You Could See Me Now

If You Could See Me Now by Cecelia Ahern
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's review
Jun 01, 2008

it was amazing
bookshelves: fantasy, chicklit
Recommended for: Chicklit lovers/light fantasy readers
Read in June, 2008

** spoiler alert ** When I picked up this book, I was expecting a general novel along the genre of chick lit. So I was really surprised to find the premise of the book centering around an "imaginary friend." I was a little put off, but interested to see how the story would unfold.

Elizabeth is lonely, though she won't admit it. The adoptive aunt of her sister's son Luke, she has no idea how to relate to the six year old, nor does she seem concerned with it. With an important job and the stress that her wild, alcoholic sister lays at her door, Elizabeth finds no time or motivation to break through the wall she's built around her since her mother left the family when she was a little girl.

When Luke starts talking to Ivan, the imaginery friend that Elizabeth can't see, she humors him and plays along minimally. What she doesn't realize is that for an imaginary friend, Ivan is real, a true being with thoughts and feelings who can only be seen by those who need him. It soon becomes apparent that Elizabeth needs a friend more than Luke, and she and Ivan begin a deep friendship that quickly turns into love. The closer they become, the more Elizabeth finds her free spirit and the more Ivan realizes just how hard falling in love can be when you're an "imaginary" figure.

I absolutely loved this book, though from the beginning it took on a sad tone for me and of course, ended with the expected emotions. But the characters were great. Elizabeth is cold and unlikable in the beginning but develops as the story goes along. The side characters, such as Elizabeth's sister and dad are minor but serve a strong purpose in reflecting their family background.

Ivan of course is the standout though, a grown male character with the heart of a child that grows up quickly when he falls in love. Ahern takes us, as adult readers, into the world of the imaginary friend that was probably very real to us when we were small. Her story isn't just a fanciful love story, it's a reminder of how much we stop believing in things when we exit childhood.

Definitely a good book, and I recommend it before the movie comes out, which, while still in production, currently has Hugh Jackman cast as Ivan (

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