The Invisibles: A Novel
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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 own family which they dub The Invisibles. But when tragedy strikes after graduation, Nora is left to deal with the horrifying aftermath alone as the other three girls leave home and don’t look back.
Fourteen years later, Nora is living a quiet, single life working in the local library. She is content to focus on her collection of “first lines” (her favorite opening lines from novels) and her dog, Alice Walker, when out-of-the-blue Ozzie calls her on her thirty-second birthday. But after all these years, Ozzie hasn’t called her to wish a happy birthday. Instead, she tells Nora that Grace attempted suicide and is pleading for The Invisibles to convene again. Nora is torn: she is thrilled at the thought of being in touch with her friends, and yet she is hesitant at seeing these women after such a long and silent period of time. Bolstered by her friends at the library, Nora joins The Invisibles in Chicago for a reunion that sets off an extraordinary chain of events that will change each of their lives forever.
The Invisibles is an unforgettable novel that asks the questions: How much of our pasts define our present selves? And what does it take to let go of some of our most painful wounds and move on?
having that feeling was when she’d stayed late after school to make up a test. Afterward, she had come back to Turning Winds and found the three of them in the kitchen. Ozzie was sitting on the table, her feet resting on one of the chairs, fiddling with a Rubik’s cube. Grace was balanced on the edge of the counter, picking at the edges of a pan of lasagna, and Monica was standing in front of the refrigerator, her free arm resting on the open door. They were laughing at something Nora had come in
navigate. Living with Cesar was fun and wild, but I never knew what was going to happen when he got angry. Sometimes he’d laugh it off; other times he’d yell. Once he drove off on his motorcycle and didn’t come back for three days. I thought I was going to lose my mind, trying to figure out where he’d gone, if he’d come back. With Gary, I knew what to expect. I’d already done it for half my life. And I was so good at it. God, I was so fucking good at it.” She shrugged. “So I stayed. A few years
across the highway—pinpoints of light followed by wide bands of darkness. Every so often, her clotted thoughts would disperse as she thought back to the conversation she’d had with Trudy and Marion: Go with your girls, Nora. Be brave. See what happens. They were small words, but the meaning behind them felt colossal. As if what might happen next rested upon whether or not she decided to keep abiding by it. Ozzie was pressed up against the steering wheel as they pulled into Willow Grove ninety
should be if it isn’t.” Nora was embarrassed that she didn’t know the answer to Ozzie’s question, but the truth was that she had never taken the time or the effort to inquire further about the property. She didn’t want to know the details about why it had closed, or who might buy it one day in the future, or if it might even be razed eventually. There was nothing more to know, nothing anyone else could tell them. Everything they needed to know about the house was right there in front of them,
arm as Nora and Grace held their breaths. “Fuck,” Ozzie said. “Now what?” Chapter 26 What do you mean, now what?” Grace hissed. “It’s the police, Ozzie. We can’t screw around here. We have to go down and explain ourselves.” “Do you realize you’re trespassing on private property?” The cop’s voice hurtled up the stairs. Nora wasn’t sure if the question was rhetorical or if he was just stalling for time until they showed their faces. Either way, it wasn’t good. “He won’t arrest us, will he?”