Sunday, August 05, 2007

The Invisible

by Mats Wahl

Now a Major Motion Picture! Gosh, I hate when they put that on the cover. In fact, just as this is the English translation of a book written in Sweden, the American movie is remake of a Swedish movie, and of course the American version ups the ante by adding a second invisible character because, as we all know, most Americans are incapable of detecting subtlety or paying attention to a tragedy that isn't also a romance.

As to the book, subtlety is not in the plot but in the excruciatingly slow unfolding of events. I'm not giving anything away by telling you there's an invisible character — the title does that well enough, and his invisibility becomes apparent early in the story. Really, much of the plot is rather predictable, but, thanks to excellent writing, that doesn't diminish the tense, strangled urgency or the crushing sense of tragedy that permeate the book. It's a pretty quick read, a good recommendation for "reluctant reader" teens and those with a book report due tomorrow.

Also, spend a few moments pondering the book jacket. I didn't see it until I held the book open and looked at the whole image that wraps around from front to back cover.

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