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All the Invisible Things

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In this contemporary YA for fans of Becky Albertalli, one girl decides it's time to be really be herself--but will that cost her the best friend who once meant everything to her?

Ever since her mom died and her family moved to a new town four years ago, sixteen-year-old Vetty Lake has hidden her heart. She'd rather keep secrets than risk getting hurt--even if that means not telling anyone that she's pretty sure she's bisexual.

But this summer, everything could change. Vetty and her family are moving back to her old neighborhood, right across the street from her childhood best friend Pez. Next to Pez, she always felt free and fearless. Reconnecting with him could be the link she needs to get back to her old self.

Vetty quickly discovers Pez isn't exactly the boy she once knew. He has a new group of friends, a glamorous sort-of-girlfriend named March, and a laptop full of secrets. And things get even more complicated when she feels a sudden spark with March.

As Vetty navigates her relationship with Pez and her own shifting feelings, one question looms: Does becoming the girl she longs to be mean losing the friendship that once was everything to her?

368 pages, Hardcover

First published March 7, 2019

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About the author

Orlagh Collins

2 books100 followers
Irish. Lives in Somerset with husband, kids and a crazy cockerpoo, Mildred.

Loves strong coffee and 80's teen movies. Swears like a sailor. Also makes films.

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5 stars
152 (18%)
4 stars
304 (37%)
3 stars
268 (32%)
2 stars
77 (9%)
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20 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 148 reviews
Profile Image for emma.
1,825 reviews48.3k followers
June 24, 2021
i've read 150 books this year. i haven't DNFed even one.

but baby, there's a first time for everything, and i am simply not the target audience for this.

dnf at 50% / thanks to the publisher for the ARC


reading all books with LGBTQ+ rep for pride this month!

book 1: the gravity of us
book 2: the great american whatever
book 3: wild beauty
book 4: the affair of the mysterious letter
book 5: how we fight for our lives
book 6: blue lily, lily blue
book 7: the times i knew i was gay
book 8: conventionally yours
book 9: the hollow inside
book 10: nimona
book 11: dark and deepest red
book 12: the house in the cerulean sea
book 13: the raven king
book 14: violet ghosts
book 15: as far as you'll take me
book 16: bad feminist
book 17: a song for a new day
book 18: one last stop
book 19: to break a covenant
book 20: honey girl
book 21: check, please!
book 22: the subtweet
book 23: if we were villains
book 24: everything leads to you
book 25: you have a match
book 26: ziggy, stardust, and me
book 27: all the invisible things
Profile Image for Stephanie.
Author 69 books971 followers
January 28, 2019
Ohhhh this book! This is the book I desperately needed as a teenager. I'm so glad for all the teen girls who can read it now - especially (but not only) the bi girls who feel so confused because they don't know how to fit into the labels they see all around them. There were so many pages I dog-eared as I read (something I almost never do!) because lines on them resonated SO deeply in ways I'd never seen represented in fiction before, and they meant so much to me.

This is a book about all of our invisible truths and the courage it takes to share them - not just Vetty's path toward understanding herself and coming out to the world as bi, but also figuring out who she IS as a person outside of any labels, and how to have a friendship that doesn't hide from the painful, hurting bits. She and Pez, the boy who lived opposite her on her street, were best friends through their childhood, but when her mother died, her dad swept her and her sister away for several years and she and Pez lost touch. She spent those years trying to blend in for safety, keeping her true self hidden; when her family comes back to London, and to Pez, she's ecstatic about getting the chance to finally relax and be herself again with him.

But Pez has his own secrets and fears and pain, and it's going to take a lot of courage on both of their parts to open up to each other, in the midst of all the confusion of first romances (with other people) and the conflicting messages that teenagers of every gender are battered with every day about sex, what it takes to be a "real" girl or boy, and how they're supposed to treat each other.

This is such a deeply kind and compassionate book, even as Vetty and Pez face some intense adult issues (in a totally realistic way for older teenagers). It reminded me a bit of my favorite Sarah Dessen novels in its immersiveness and warmth, but Orlagh Collins's gorgeous writing style is very much her own.

The last line almost made me cry, it was so lovely and right. And as soon as I post this review, I'm going to reserve her first book (No Filter) from my local bookshop so I can devour that one, too!
Profile Image for Chris C.
120 reviews8 followers
March 31, 2019
A fantastic coming-of-age story set in Britain dealing with sexuality, mental health, death and the grieving process and generally finding your identity in a world full of labels.

Great to read not only a female-led LGBT book but specifically one with a bi character. For me, it was a really refreshing take on what has come before. I really connected with Vetty and her struggles. She was flawed in so many ways that made her feel all the more real.

I was sure at around 80% through that I knew how the book would end but even at that late point, the story still managed to subvert my expectations and end on a really perfect note.

The only reason this isn't a 5 star read is purely because I sometimes felt that some of the situations Vetty ended up in could have been delved into much deeper. Without spoiling, I think going even further into the group dynamic that was being built would have been really interesting to read and would have bumped my rating up.

In saying that, I can't really fault this book as a whole and I would recommend it to anyone!

Thanks to Bloomsbury and NetGalley for providing me a copy to review.
Profile Image for harms.
221 reviews25 followers
August 28, 2019
really considering giving this book 1 star, but I know thats only because it was not what I was expecting at all.

think I should mention this first, I HATE reading about sex, and if I knew how much it was mentioned, I probably wouldn't have read this book. I do think it raised some important discussions, but I just don't enjoy reading about this stuff.

I'm pretty sure this book takes place in like 2017-18 because that's when stranger things 2 was released. and I am so confused about how no one knew what bisexual was?? I just wanna say first that I am bisexual, so I am more than aware that bisexual erasure is a thing. but everyone was so shocked about someone liking both genders? in fact, the word bisexual isn't even mentioned until near the end of the book. Like I know figuring out your identity can be a difficult thing, but it just felt all off to me. and like google exists so it seems unrealistic to me that she didn't google it, especially since she didn't give off any vibes about being ashamed of her sexuality. I don't know man just seems weird to me
Profile Image for Kelly (Diva Booknerd).
1,106 reviews299 followers
July 16, 2019
Helvetica has never quite felt herself since her mother passed away after her cancer diagnosis and her father relocated his young family from London to Somerset, exchanging the vibrant city for a cottage retreat. Living in Somerset, the family are now returning to London to resume their lives, including seeing Peregrine once more. Helvetica and Peregrine were childhood friends, neighbours and adventurers but have since lost contact.

Since the loss of her mother, Helvetica has adapted into a mothering role for younger sister Arial, both sibling names a tribute to their mother's love of fonts. Their father now widowed, moving his young family to the country with his sister and her partner while he continued to work from their small cottage on the family property. Grieving and overwhelmed, Helvetica begun to reinvent herself to assimilate and suppress her sexuality.

Throughout the narrative, Helvetica identifies with an attraction towards males and females, realising she's bisexual and feeling a sense of ownership and belonging. It's a defining moment of her sexual identity and within young adult literature. Our adolescent years is when we are exploring our sense of identity which often includes our sexuality and experiencing Helvetica's feelings of confusion is palpable. Another aspect of Helvetica's sexuality is when she discusses her feelings with her Aunt who identifies as lesbian. When describing her attraction towards females on the eve of their same gender wedding, her Aunt assumes Helvetica is also a lesbian in which she later apologises. It would have been wonderful to have experienced her unconditional support for Helvetica during their conversation, rather than have an adult place labels upon her sexual identity. Although it's presumed to be a moment of compassion and understanding, even camaraderie could be interpreted as bisexual or pansexual erasure which some may find distressing.

Peregrine is an interesting character but incredibly abrasive and narcissistic. After Helvetica moved to Somerset, the phone calls became less frequent, messages left unanswered. A young girl grieving, navigating life without her mother and caring for a younger sibling, when returning to London and her small apartment across from the lavish home he shares with his parents, Peregrine was irritable, resentful and seemingly refusing to accept responsibility for his behaviour. Including his addiction to pornography. Peregrine describes his compulsion as an inadequacy and that he's unable to have a sexual relationship because he feels desensitised, impotent and defective. It's important to emphasise that relationships exist beyond a physical relationship, potentially insensitive to those who identify as asexual.

It was wonderful that female masturbation is explored and as a positive experience. Younger sister Arial is also approaching adolescence and is curious about her body and sexuality and with her father emotionally absent, Helvetica helps Arial to understand about body changes, her period and sexuality. It was a gentle and genuine moment between siblings. The friendship Helvetica and March share is beautiful. March is Peregrine's girlfriend, although he also treats her with an incredible amount of disdain. March confides in Helvetica about her relationship with Peregrine and it was lovely to see their friendship existing independently of Peregrine.

I thoroughly enjoyed Helvetica's journey but felt the narrative was sacrificed for Peregrine's issues that seemingly took precedence, I'm incredibly frustrated in male characters doing the bare minimum. All The Invisible Things is an entertaining and arresting contemporary novel and wonderful coming of age.
Profile Image for Lauren.
408 reviews53 followers
February 27, 2019
All the invisible things. I would give this book a 3.5/4 star rating. I was so glad to see a bisexual character in the book, most books seem to miss out the B in LGBTQ+. I found the book quite hard to get into and nothing kind of happened til the middle but once it got to the middle I was hooked and finished the book as quickly as possible. I absolutely adore the author of this book and proudly own No Filter. I did enjoy this book and look forward to more books from Orlagh in the future. Thanks Netgalley for the early review copy.
Profile Image for a.
1,168 reviews
February 12, 2020
What a great read! This is definitely a book that needed to be written and something that will be so important to so many young and confused teens out there that need to be seen or heard. All the Invisible Things touches upon so many important topics and it made me feel so, so much in just a few hundred pages.

I will say that I think I went into this book with expectations that weren't exactly met. I thought this book would be this deep but yet romantic love story about a girl named Vetty who was figuring out her sexuality and falling in love with her best friend's girlfriend and there would be this super angsty (and yet sweet) romance between them. And that's really not the case here.

Yes: this book is about a girl named Vetty and she is figuring out her sexuality and she does have a crush on her best friend's kinda girlfriend. but

No: this is not a romance. And really, there's no romance at all nor is there a f/f sweet and yet angsty romance.

This book is more about Vetty's journey to coming back home four years after her mother passed away. It's about her trying to come to terms with who she is, with how things have changed since her mom died and how people (Pez) have changed since she last saw him. It's about depression, and addiction and sex and love and family and feeling like there's never quite enough of you to give and yet so much of you that you want to share so that you can be there for the people you care about.

It's a beautiful book and one that I think many will love. I would definitely recommend this book to any and all readers but this is especially a book I think is important for high schoolers to read.
Profile Image for Jenna.
274 reviews38 followers
March 14, 2019
This book had a great premise, and the representation is definitely important, but overall I felt as though it was kind of a mess.

None of the characters felt particularly likeable, the friendship between Vetty and Pez was unbelievable at times and I felt like the majority of the secondary characters were stereotypes who weren’t given much life.

There was simultaneously so much going on and nothing happening at all, to the point where I was bored for almost the entire book... and that includes the “shocking” ending. (disclaimer: didn’t care enough about the characters to actually be “shocked”)

Overall, I feel like this book was messy and tried to focus on way too many problems at once. But hey, at least it was right about Stranger Things being the greatest TV show.
Profile Image for Lexi // libraryoflexi.
300 reviews10 followers
February 17, 2019
High 3.5 - 4 stars!
Massive thank you to Bloomsbury for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Okay this book definitely did not take the road I was expecting it to but I enjoyed it. This story will resonate with a lot of younger (and older) YA readers that are still trying to find their way in this world, or those who have been there, done that. Either way it will definitely hit you right in the feels.

I enjoyed Vetty as the MC. She felt real and down to earth. Trying to mend old friendships and make new ones while you're still unsure of who you are can be challenging and I feel like this was balanced perfectly. I find a lot of things can be sugarcoated throughout YA, but I liked this darker, grittier side of YA. I did find a few of the characters a bit lack lustre and didn't particularly contribute much to the story. I think I was expecting a bit more from Amira, who just popped up occasionally and didn't seem to have much going on. Arial was the best though. I need a book about her when she's 16 as well. While you're at it, throw in another book about Pez. Kthxbai <3
Profile Image for thi.
667 reviews83 followers
February 15, 2020
- bookish pet peeve: pop culture references
- i wish for many sub genres to be made clear within ya contemporary, like drama, romance, satire ... *cough cough* slice of life
- which in case you aren’t familiar, slice of life is quite literal, a slice of the life of the narrator or story is told .. with not much plot
- Listen this is just ... quite slow
- so slow that I almost want to suggest Skipping straight to the halfway mark and continuing from there
- I didn’t really manage my expectations in that I wanted something outrightly sapphic where this was slow and ... slow
- The synopsis kind of implies it’d break down the phrase “you’re not like other girls” but it doesn’t really .. I kept waiting for it .. and nothing
Profile Image for Chiara.
870 reviews220 followers
August 5, 2019
A copy of this novel was provided by Bloomsbury Australia for review.

The first thing you need to know about All the Invisible Things is that the main character, Vetty, is bisexual! And the word is used on the page, bless. The discussion around bisexuality in the book is pretty cisnormative but I did read an early review copy so I’m not sure if that was changed later on. Even so, I was so glad to have a young bi girl main character that is sure of her sexuality because even though I recognise the need for stories about characters discovering their sexuality it’s nice to have stories about characters who already know and are comfortable with their sexuality, as well.

The story of All the Invisible Things turned out to be quite different from what I had expected it to be. Firstly, I thought that this would definitely feature a romance between Pez (Vetty’s childhood best friend) and Vetty but to my surprise they stayed friends the entire time. And there were quite a few occasions where Vetty clearly explained that she loved Pez as a friend and nothing more. Though there was a slightly confusing scene towards the end involving a kiss but I guess that was just them sharing their love in an intimate way even though they’re not romantically interested in each other. To be honest I would have preferred that not to be in there as I think it did confuse the friendship for me and possibly the two of them, as well.

When I realised that All the Invisible Things was not going to be about long lost best friends falling in love with each other I didn’t really mind because it let me focus on the other things this book was shining a light on. Like how Vetty had to grow up and become a pseudo-mother to her younger sister after their mum died. Vetty’s feelings towards two people that she does have a romantic interest in. Vetty learning what it means to be a good friend. The way Vetty is sure of her bisexuality but isn’t sure if everyone else will understand it. And last but not least, Vetty’s sexuality in general. There was so much exploration of her discovering her interest in sex and discovering what works for her and what makes her feel good. And tied into that was Vetty recognising her own beauty. These last two aspects of the book were my favourite. I feel like YA tries to shy away from girls’ sexuality and I seriously commend the author for not doing that. Because of this I think this book will be integral to so many bi girls, to see themselves on the page, but also girls in general.

I truly understand why this book is called All the Invisible Things because the things this book explores are all the invisible things in life. The things tangled up in feelings and people and yourself. It was a nice moment to discover where the title fit in, and I think it truly represents what the story is about. I could go on, and tell you about all the other things this book covers but I think this is the kind of book that you should discover mostly on your own. I had hardly an idea of what the book was about, except that it was about a bi girl moving back home, and I think that was a perfect way to be introduced to Vetty’s life. So if you’re keen on a book that is all about the invisible things and tackles topics that aren’t often seen in YA then I think All the Invisible Things will be a good fit.

© 2019, Chiara @ Books for a Delicate Eternity. All rights reserved.

trigger warning: use of ableist language, cisnormativity, death of parent (lymphoma), friend in car accident, bisexual erasure, friend with addiction (pornography), homophobia, romantic cheating (friend's parent)
Profile Image for Siobhan.
Author 2 books80 followers
January 16, 2019
All The Invisible Things is a powerful and warm YA novel about finding real connections with people and being honest. Helvetica—Vetty—moved from London to Somerset after her mum died, leaving behind her best friend Pez and her ability to feel comfortable as herself. Now she's seventeen and moving back to London with her dad and younger sister, but she's hiding the secret of the fact she likes boys and girls, and she's not spoken to Pez in years. Back in London, Pez seemed different, their connection isn't what it was, and Vetty finds herself navigating a new friendship too.

This is a great YA read that shows there's not one way to be and that it isn't always easy to be yourself, even when you find the people you can be yourself around. Vetty is a bright and complex narrator and Collins weaves in a lot of elements of her life, from her role looking after her younger sister to her lost passion for photography, to give her a real sense of authenticity. What is quite refreshing is that the real focus on the novel is about Vetty reforming old friendships and gaining new ones, and though her coming to terms with her bisexuality is important, it is one element of her life amidst other parts. The power of character-focused YA fiction is that it can depict three-dimensional protagonists that show the amount of things people have to balance in real life.

All The Invisible Things is the kind of book for older YA readers that we keep needing more of: ones that looks at issues such as sex, identity, mental health, and the realities of the internet whilst staying witty and character-driven.
Profile Image for Kathryn Murphy.
8 reviews1 follower
January 17, 2019
I fell early for Vetty (and her family) and was with her all the way. This is a contemporary YA addressing big issues, but Collins has a lightness of touch that exudes warmth and Vetty's challenges feel real and relatable. The interaction between her, the elder sibling with too much responsibility, and her little sister, Arial, is particularly well handled. Pez, while a slow-thaw, was a revelation for me. I loved it.
Profile Image for Anukriti Chaturvedi.
124 reviews96 followers
May 7, 2019
As seen on my blog KALEIDOSCOPIC NERD

"It takes a lot of bravery just to be ourselves."

I feel authors like Becky Albertalli, Adam Silvera, Rainbow Rowell, David Levithan and some others paved the way for queer rep novels. Once upon a time, there was wayy less diversity and no PoC (person of colour) or LGBTQ+ rep in books, but I’m so glad that things are finally changing! *happy dance*

So, we’ve our protagonist, Helvetica (yes, like the font 😉 ) a.k.a Vetty who is shifting back to London, a few years after the death of her mother. She is super nervous about seeing her childhood best friend, Pez, who she hasn’t talked with in a long time. We see how Vetty , while navigating her confused life has to be like act like a mother to her 10 year old sister, who is all too curious and wants to know about puberty, menstruation and everything that comes with that territory.

We also see her adjusting to her new life in London and some great female friendships!

"This isn’t about the the electrically charged feelings that I sometimes have for girls. It’s that I’ve had those same fuzzy fizzy feelings for boys too and explaining this out loud seems so challenging."

The blurb can be a bit misleading because it’s not your regular rom-com. This is book is serious, heartbreaking and sometimes super hilarious and just deals with so many aspects of modern living and the issues we face in today’s day and age. It doesn’t shy away from talking about some very serious topics which we normally consider taboo but in reality, which require so much attention and shouldn’t be brushed off. It’s about finding yourself but in a very non- cliched way and maintaining old bonds and forming new ones. It was a very refreshing read and was quite real and the characters were fleshed out so beautifully! ❤️ This story is about asking for help from your loved ones and finding your own path in life and not being conformed by labels.

"Thinking about my own pleasure as opposed to what I’ll look like seems almost radical."

A lil bit spoilery – It deals quite sensitively and beautifully with female masturbation which people think is a mythical story or the loch ness monster i.e, not real 🙄 and porn addiction, which can have very dire consequences on a person’s life and their mental health. The book also touches upon menstruation from the perspective of a curious and an inquisitive mind.

Spoilery bit end!

I personally loved all the pop culture references and I think this book will resonate well with younger readers and will probably be quite relatable for bi’s and anyone who is confused about their identities.

It did feel a bit slow and a bit haphazard though, which is the reason for the absence of a star!

So, if you are some who enjoys contemporary fiction at a deeper level and lgbtq+ rep books, this one is for you.
Profile Image for Brooklyn Tayla.
967 reviews64 followers
May 5, 2019
This was definitely an interesting one, I’m all for all of the bisexual representation in books, it’s obviously important, and it’s a confusing thing sometimes, and I feel like the author portrayed those feelings really well! I absolutely adored Hetty, and definitely felt like I was a part of her journey during this book. I definitely feel like it’s an important read, and people that feel like they’re attracted to both genders, I think, will relate to Hetty’s confusion and almost reluctance to explain how she might feel towards her family, when she’s desperately trying to keep it all together, for the sake of her little sister, Arial. I mean, their mother had recently passed away and their father initially struggles with solo parenting, which made me feel for the girl even more!
I enjoyed how much friendship played a part in this book, however, at the same time, I personally found some of Hetty’s friends slightly problematic at times. For example, I found her absolute best friend, Pez, to be a bit of (and I’m sorry to say this, to those that like him), a special snowflake, and definitely not in an encouraging way. I mean, he was upset when Hetty moved away with her family without saying a word, and that’s understandable…however, what I couldn’t fathom was how, on the anniversary of Hetty’s mother’s death, Pez goes on an almost ‘woe is me’ speech, and rather than actually focus on darling Hetty, he starts to tell her about his not so bright addictions, and literally makes her feel bad, I thought, rather than embracing her and letting her mourn. Then he’s hardly supportive of her being a film extra, it’s like come on dude!
Then we have March, a total breath of fresh air, who captures Hetty’s soul and they find they have a total superb connection, which I’m all for, I mean, we all have these people in life who’s connections we value above others. I was honestly shipping these two so hard! I thought and hoped that they would become more than friends, especially when March kissed Hetty! I mean, my heart! But alas, things definitely don’t always turn out how we like, I know, let’s just say I personally thought Hetty had more chemistry with March, and their relationship, to me, would’ve made more sense than he (Pez) who takes slightly more than he gives, in my opinion. Pez’s friend, Rob, was an interesting one, I feel like if both of them actually got to have a heart to heart, such as what was going on in their lives, they would have had a more solid, mutual friendship, rather than Rob throwing around beyond beyond stupid insults regarding Pez’s addictions, not cool.

Definitely a thought provoking read, though, I must say, she who used to read all of the books at once (well not quite, but you know? Sara, I’m looking at you (my wonderful friend who suggested I take it easy and read one at a time), which is just what I did and wouldn’t have done so differently!
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Lynsey.
102 reviews2 followers
March 19, 2019
I can't stop thinking about this beautiful book. A wonderfully tender and moving story about self-acceptance, bravery, grief and honesty. I also LOVED that it focused on the mundane, ordinary stuff. A coming-of-age and coming out story that I really wish had been around in my teens. It has a piece of my heart!
Profile Image for Ash | Wild Heart Reads.
244 reviews141 followers
April 10, 2019
All The Invisible Things follows Vetty, as she returns to her childhood home and friend, having spent the last four years away. Vetty isn’t the only one who has changed though and everything is different. All The Invisible Things was a great book about grief, change and having to courage to be yourself.

This was different to what I had expected from the blurb on the ARC going in. It’s not different in a bad way, but it tackles some deeper topics, whereas the blurb frames it as more of a romantic-focused contemporary. It deals with porn addiction, loss of a loved one and finding oneself.

Vetty is bi and I think Collins did a good job at handling her story. Vetty knows she’s not solely attracted to men, however, she isn’t out at the beginning of the book. As the book progresses she navigates her sexuality and the labels she uses as she falls for a girl.

This deals frankly with female masturbation and desire which was great to see. Although books are dealing with this more and more, there’s still definitely a lack of books where girls can express and learn about their bodies and desires without it being with/about boys.

This is an important coming-of-age story where a bi girl is front and centre. It touches on the changing nature of friendships, the way grief affects people differently and coping with traumatic events/experiences.


Content warnings (highlight to read):

*I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are my own and are unbiased*

This review and more can be found at https://wildheartreads.wordpress.com/
Profile Image for Karen Barber.
2,533 reviews60 followers
February 28, 2019
Vetty is taking time to work out how she feels about all sorts of things. It was easier when she was younger: her mother was alive, her best friend knew her instinctively and she didn’t have to worry about people trying to label her.
For the last few years they’ve lived in Somerset with her aunt, struggling to come to terms with losing mum. Now the family are moving back to London and Vetty is trying to pick up where she left off.
Some of the initial interactions we watched Vetty have were very self-conscious. It was hard to know how we felt about her and her friendship with Pez. As the two talk, it’s evident that Vetty has feelings for boys and girls and is going to have to think about what’s important to her.
I felt Vetty was a really engaging character. She didn’t always get things right, but it was easy to identify with her uncertainty.
Thanks to NetGalley for granting me early access to this in exchange for my review.
Profile Image for Katie Hurse.
573 reviews34 followers
March 3, 2019
Ended up being so pleasantly surprised by this book, perhaps most of all because I really, really didn't like No Filter. This book stands up all on its own, though (I think it was at about 30-40% that I started to feel this way though, the start is a little slow). It does some really important stuff and focuses on some taboo topics, namely masturbation (for both genders), porn & addiction. It also does a lot for the discussion of sexuality (particularly, though not exclusively, bisexuality). Overall I just felt like it was a really informative book and a brave book, and I can imagine that some teenagers who may come across it in the future may find it to be of huge comfort.
Profile Image for Tamsin Winter.
Author 5 books130 followers
June 11, 2019
Absolutely loved the cinematic writing style and could not put this contemporary YA novel down. Vetty's character was sweet and real, as are all the other characters. The relationships are painfully real and the relationship between Vetty and March was particularly moving and again, really positive in the way March handles Vetty's revelation. Loved the positive messages about sexuality and growing up in this book and I was in tears towards the end. Another brilliantly funny and heartwarming book by Orlagh Collins. This will improve the lives and confidence of so many young people. Highly recommended.
Profile Image for Evelien.
65 reviews35 followers
July 7, 2020
The beginning of the book is so boring. There is just nothing else I can say about that but then towards the middle things finally start picking up. Secondly, the blurb on the book is not exactly accurate about what you're getting when reading this. Also I found the friendship between Pez and Vetty quite forced. Most of the story seems to be about him and not the main character.
Profile Image for Iris.
114 reviews6 followers
April 14, 2019
I thought this book did a really great job exploring the feelings of teenagers around identity and friendship. It touches on so many subjects and in a sensible and sensitive way. I wish this book had existed when I was a teenager.
February 3, 2019
A stunning book that manages to perfectly balance the important topics with lighter moments. Brilliantly written with a very realistic feel to everything that takes place.
Profile Image for Gerrianne.
57 reviews5 followers
November 12, 2019
4.5 stars.

I teared up quite a few times as this book hit me right in the feels. It said some really powerful things and I think I’ll definitely read it again in the future.
Profile Image for Lily.
275 reviews130 followers
March 6, 2019
Trust me, nobody is sadder than me about my rating.

This book is about Vetty who is moving back to London after having moved to Somerset a few years prior after her mum died. She lost touch with her best friend Pez, and wants to reconnect, but isn't sure how to go about it. Ultimately, this is a coming-of-age and coming out story, and whilst there are some really great aspects of this book, it just missed the mark for me.

Let's start with the positives though: I really loved how frank and open this book was about sex and bodies and puberty, it was so refreshing to see. There's actual discussion in here about female masturbation which was so incredible to see!! I also thought the bi rep was pretty well handled. This really follows Vetty from starting to question to fully realising her sexuality and coming out and it was really interesting to follow her journey on that.

However, I really struggled to connect with this book. Particularly the first 100 pages felt so disjointed, I often couldn't connect how we'd gotten from point A to point B in certain scenes and with certain characters thought processes. It was kind of bewildering and really took me out of the story and kept me from connecting to a lot of the characters.

Also, I felt like the friendship between Pez and Vetty was ... difficult for me to swallow at times. There is a particular scene where they're confronting why they lost contact with each other, and essentially Vetty gets most of the blame for why they didn't stay in contact, and why Pez has ended up feeling so hurt. This is understandable, but I felt like the author didn't bring about the nuance of the fact that this was around the time that Vetty's mother had died around the time that they lost contact. Losing a parent as a teen is a massive trauma, one I know first hand. I'm not saying it excuses being a bad friend, but there were issues here that I didn't think were raised with regard to Vetty and how she dealt with her mother's death that could've been explored, but weren't. It just left a bad taste in my mouth, with Vetty pretty much taking the blame for everything and Pez didn't seem to be ... super understanding or try to talk to Vetty about her own pain with her mother's death, when she would listen to his. I just wish this whole discussion had been more nuanced.

As for the representation of teenage bereavement, which I have experienced first hand, it just felt a bit inconsistent. There were some great moments where Vetty would discuss anniversaries or memories of her mother, and it did have an effect on her life, which is better than some YA that has main characters with a dead parent. But, for me, if your main character has a dead parent, it needs to be threaded throughout their life. I'm not saying it has to be their one personality trait, but as I said earlier, it is a massive trauma and will affect the way your main character thinks and behaves, which I felt like was missed sometimes in this book.

I know most people who have read this book have really enjoyed it, and I'm still so glad that more queer UKYA is being published and I want so much more to be published! This book just wasn't for me unfortunately, and nobody is sadder about it than myself.
1,065 reviews72 followers
March 3, 2019
Hmm. To be honest, I'm not really sure what to say in a review of this one. I liked elements of it, particularly the honest discussion of bisexuality and the various ways people invalidate that even while trying to be supportive, as well as the frank and open discussions about teenage concerns to do with body hair, sex, and so on.

On the other hand, it wasn't really what I was expecting from the blurb I remember reading on NetGalley; I thought it would have a bigger focus on friendship (which, don't get me wrong, it did have), and a major element of the book is a character's struggle with a porn addiction, which isn't something I was expecting at all. Possibly this was down to me skimming the blurb and misremembering what it said, but it caught me out somewhat.

It was nice to have some UK-based contemporary YA -- I'm always saying we need more of it, so it's important to actually read it when it does exist! I immediately feel a stronger connection with characters when they speak the same English as me and when their school system looks like the one I went through, but that's about where my resemblance with the characters in this stopped, which may be why I found them a little hard to relate to.

Anyway. Idk. If you want some UK-based YA contemporary featuring a bisexual protagonist, you might enjoy this one, but it didn't entirely win me over, in part because it wasn't quite the book I was expecting it to be.
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188 reviews2 followers
June 25, 2021
Oof, I can happily say that All The Invisible Things is one of my favourite queer YA books I’ve ever read. When I read the first chapter I believed that I wouldn’t get a lot from this story, as I am not the target audience for it. And some parts did make me feel old, but not in a bad way at all. More in a protective, older sibling, “I just want to give these kids a hug and help explain some of these super confusing things to them” way. But seeing the characters come to their own conclusions and understanding was even more satisfying than if I’d have been able to step in.

I found some of the plot points predictable but that certainly didn’t take anything away from my reading experience. If anything, when the big event happened towards the end, it was even more impactful because I really wasn’t expecting to be so surprised.

Ultimately, it was a super easy read that took me less than 24 hours to finish and I happily gobbled up every line. I’d have loved and appreciated this book so much when I was in my early teens, as I’m sure a lot of other queer/questioning people would have too. I’m very happy it exists and I’m glad it found its way to me. 4.5 stars.
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