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The Invisibles

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  988 ratings  ·  142 reviews
In the vein of Meg Donohue and Jennifer Close, comes Cecilia Galante's adult debut about the complicated and powerful bonds of female friendship--a compelling, moving novel that is told in both the present and the past.

Thrown together by chance as teenagers at Turning Winds Home for Girls, Nora, Ozzie, Monica, and Grace quickly bond over their troubled pasts and form their
Paperback, 373 pages
Published August 4th 2015 by William Morrow Paperbacks
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Tracey It's an adult fiction book, definitely chick lit

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Average rating 3.71  · 
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 ·  988 ratings  ·  142 reviews

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Raven Haired Girl
Aug 12, 2015 added it
Shelves: 2015
Learning of each woman’s history is undoubtedly emotional. As the stories unravel you understand how their harsh and tragic upbringing effects their present and future, challenging overcoming events along with deep dark secrets mixed with trauma. Their backgrounds include sexual abuse, physical abuse, a parent murdered, mental illness.

The most compelling character is Nora. Holding back the most, including not sharing completely with her three friends, you feel her pain. She’s closed off, haunted
May 19, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: edelweiss
Review also found at

**I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review**

You know what happens when you are driving along on the highway and there is an accident which cause traffic to slow down? And the reason it has slowed down is because everyone is straining to see if they can see what happened? That is what this book reminds me of. All of the characters are a complete train wreck.

I don't want
Aug 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015
Sometimes when I read a book like The Invisibles, I end up feeling emotionally drained. I wasn't expecting this book to take me on such an emotional roller coaster, but it did. It's about four friends who became woman together in a girls' home. They relied on each other in every way that mattered. After graduation, they went their separate ways and lost touch. When one of the four women attempts suicide, her husband contacts the other three to come help her.

As I said, this book is pretty intense
Kelly Hager
Aug 28, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nicole Hackett
Aug 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, favourites
I would definitely give this book more than 5 stars if I could! The characters histories and how they overcame their pasts unfolded in such a natural and realistic way. I loved Nora and the other Invisibles and how even after years of not speaking they came together because they had an unbreakable bond. And the revelation of what happened on one of their last nights at Turning Wilds: gut wrenching.

It was a truly beautiful book and I know it will stay with me for a long, long time.
Mar 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful read!
If you love books about books- you will love this one. Subtly book adjacent

Beautiful story of 4 woman friends- does a shared history equal a shared present??
Ugh. I have NO desire to finish this. The main character is an offensive description of a librarian (we are not all fuddy duddies!! I have tattoos and don't dress like as described, thank you VERY MUCH.) and is very one dimensional. The story of the girls in the home when they are teenagers is absolutely wonderful! If she had written the whole book like that, I would've loved it, but unfortunately their stories as adults are just not compelling. I decided to see what the "big, horrible thing" wa ...more
Aug 21, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This story was very touching and made you really think about what some of our youth grow up facing and their experiences, especially those in the care of others and not family members. It made me think of the TV show, The Fosters, which is about a multi-ethnic family mix of biological and foster kids. The bonds between female friends is strong and can last a lifetime. It is an unspoken bond for females. Even if you lose touch with a friend, when they reach to you in their time of need, you make ...more
People come together and form friendships for all sorts of reasons, and often being in a terrible circumstance together builds a connection that is rock solid. Such is the case for Monica, Ozzie Nora and Grace, friends since their teens, while their lives never quite seemed to ‘work out’ there is support and comfort in their unbreakable friendship.

There is not a real introduction into this story: you jump right into the action, and background information and secrets are revealed through flashba
Mrs Mommy Booknerd
Mrs. Mommy Booknerd's Review:
I loved this book from cover to cover! I feel like this book started with so much emotion and never let up. It was such an amazing book. It was a beautifully woven tale of the four women as separate people and a tale of them as a group of four. I loved that, as a reader, we were given bits and pieces of information about the past and the events that lead to the present circumstances! I never quite knew how all the pieces lined up and when all was revealed I was shock
Oct 27, 2015 rated it liked it
There were parts of this book that I really enjoyed and other parts that were a bit boring or confusing to read. The parts that annoyed me the most was how the main character Nora doled out advice to her three friends but yet never took any of the advice for herself, until the very very end, which she never really had any big revelations, just kind of a sudden change. Also for four women who grew up in a foster care type home, why didn't any of them have court mandated therapy? Each had issues i ...more
Aug 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: contemporary
"But maybe that was what saying things out loud did sometimes: it made a situation tangible, forcing you to look at it in a way you never had before. Maybe for the very first time."

I picked this up from a "free" box at my local library and I'm so glad I did. The premise is fairly standard: 4 girls that were friends as teenagers come back together 15 years later and embark on a roadtrip where they learn secrets about their lives now -and their lives before.

The storyline is where the mediocrity en
Nov 17, 2015 rated it did not like it
I don't usually write negative reviews but this book may be one of the worst things I ever read. It's 400 pages devoted to explaining that an abortion will ruin your life and the lives of everyone around you. Absolutely no time is given to any exploration as to why a character would make that decisions. She just has a miserable life until the end when she finally comes to terms with the fact that she did a terrible thing. Literally all the other characters plots didn't get an ending. Complete ga ...more
Leigh Kramer
Such a wonderful exploration of 4 friends who lived in a group home together, then decided not to talk once they graduated high school until circumstances brought them back together 15 years later. Great insights on friendship but also the secrets we keep from ourselves and others. It kept me engaged and guessing the whole time as to whether the characters would grow and heal or retreat into themselves. Highly recommended.
Jan 14, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018, litsyatoz
I had a hard time connecting with the characters in this book. This was one of those stories where you knew demons would be exorcised, it was just a matter of when and how. When the past finally did start to reveal itself, I felt it all happened too neatly. Also, without giving too much away, I didn’t feel like these characters stories, with the exception of Nora’s, had any real closure.
Apr 03, 2019 rated it liked it
This author made very specific brand references (especially with shoes?!), which was one of the only things I didn't like about this book. It had a very "Now and Then" vibe: lots of lady power, some heavy moments, and other bildingsroman themes.
Carla Row
Aug 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This novel was such an unexpected amazing read. The characters will stay with me for a very long time. I would highly recommend this to anyone!
Apr 08, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book wanted to be two different books: a book about when the characters were teenagers, and a book about when the characters were adults living with what they experienced as teenagers. It is my opinion that Cecilia Galante should have just chosen one and stuck with it, because she had too many ideas and too many things she wanted to do in a short amount of time. This created writing that was cluttered and inconsistent in tonal and character shifts, forming a novel that felt lacking from beg ...more
May 06, 2016 rated it liked it
This is Galante's first adult novel, being primarily an author of Young Adult Fiction--and there lingers a Young Adult tone. Here she introduces four girls living as teenagers at Turning Winds Home for Girls. Nora, Ozzie, Monica, and Grace have all come from dysfunctional families and have been placed here through a variety of circumstances. They form their own family, calling themselves 'the invisibles'. Upon graduation, the girls attempt to escape their histories and build new lives. Unfortuna ...more
Samantha Trillium ☂
I actually finished this book a week ago, but it left me so underwhelmed that I couldn't be bothered to even change my status on here to finished reading.

The book started off really strong. Four friends grew up together in a support home. Each girl had their own story of how they had ended up there, but together they were able to help each other heal and become happy again.

The book starts off with Nora, the only girl who stayed in the small town the friends grew up in. It was easy to see she h
FMR Book Grind
Aug 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing

I LOVED this book! It was such a departure from the romance books I read on a daily basis. These characters will latch on to you and not let go. The author did an amazing job with this story and I will most definitely be looking for future work from her!

Nora, Ozzie, Monica, and Grace couldn’t be more different if they tried. They have very different and distinct personalities. But they were thrown together out of circumstance and became the best of friends. The Invisibles. Th
May 06, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: dnf
I very rarely review books aside from giving them a star rating but I wanted to provide an alternate opinion to all the 4- and 5-star reviews this book has.

I made it about 150 pages into this book before I gave up. It's clear that this is the author's first adult novel. Her writing is much more effective when she's describing the teenage girls' lives when they're at Turning Winds, a group home. When the author is writing about the women in the present-day, the characters are one-note. It's poss
Jan 29, 2017 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dawn Murray
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book. It was breathtaking in it's perfection. The characters, each one so real I could feel them sitting right next to me. The story, so beautiful in it's telling - the pace was perfect, the small insights that were revealed only when necessary. The writing - I could have dog-earred every single page. How did Galante write so many gorgeous sentences in one book?? I just loved everything about this, including the ending, which was (also) perfect. The background of the girl ...more
Aug 31, 2015 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this story of 4 friends, all so different in personality yet sharing a common brokenness. They come back together to support one another after 15 years. An emotional page-turner of loss and friendship and how these women were able to move on with the support of one another.

Loved this line at the end of the book: "Maybe that's the beauty of it after all. Maybe it wasn't about how few holes we ended up with, but how we taught ourselves to see through them, how we learned to look at our li
Jan 23, 2016 rated it it was ok
I got hung up on minor annoying details:

1. A top-of-the-line Escalade would have a built-in GPS.

2. A lighter in the dark basement? My iPhone has a flashlight. Any phone has a flashlight.

3. $400 for an 80-mile cab ride (160 since I doubt he'd have a return passenger)? I paid $60 for a 10-mile ride in Minnesota so that seems really, really low to me.

4. They split up around age 18. Ozzie dated Cesar for "a few years" then Gary for "a few years", but got married at 20.

I also hated the no-contact
Jun 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
This is the story of 4 women who met at the Turning winds home for girls. Nora is my favorite as the group who called themselves the Invisibles meet almost 15 years later. They have all grown, several are happily married but all have a past they need to address. Well written and great ladies who are so different but tied by the bonds they forged as teens. It's nice to see them grow and accept their future based on their past.
May 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
Nora, Monica, Ozzie and Grace lived in a home for unwanted children during their high school years. Finding each other and forming a bond, they lose touch after a traumatic incident, only to reunite to help one of them cope. Their stories are absorbing and pull you in until you feel part of their group.
Jun 23, 2015 rated it liked it
I received a First Reads copy of this book from William Morrow. It was a quick read, and kept me engaged and interested in finding out what happened to the group of girls that went from being inseparable, to not seeing each other for 15 years. It was slightly cliched, but a good summer read.
Oct 02, 2015 rated it really liked it
Wow. I don't usually cry when I read books, but I was sobbing at the end of this one. I was captivated from the start and had a hard time putting it down. I don't want to give any spoilers, but I loved the messy rawness of the characters. My heart breaks for all that they went through.
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Cecilia Galante is the author of several middle grade, young adult and adult novels. She also teaches 8th grade English at Wyoming Seminary Prep School, and teaches creative writing in the MFA program at Wilkes University.

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