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Review by Suze
Veronica Harper, Roni, and Veronika Harper, Nika, are friends from the moment they meet at school. They have the same name and they have one big love in common, ballet. They both want to be a ballerina and they take extra lessons to become amazing dancers. That's when life gives them their first scars. After that things go downhill rapidly. Roni wants to pay for her sins and becomes a nun. Nika marries a celebrity who's mean and controlling. After that things get even worse. Until a moment in 2016 when both Roni and Nika are coincidentally in the same place. They find each other again and together they try to make peace with their past, so they can finally have some much needed comfort and closure.
When I Was Invisible is a shocking story about two close friends who are both being dealt a very bad hand in life. I cried several times while reading this book. Nika and Roni are both kindhearted and wonderful people and it's awful that so many bad things keep happening to them. Dorothy Koomson writes about their lives in a sensitive and sympathetic way. At the same time the story is also crude, raw and honest. I badly wanted Nika and Roni to be all right and I instantly loved these two incredibly strong main characters.
Dorothy Koomson alternates between the past and the present. Nika and Roni each have their own chapters, which makes the story easy to follow. I kept being curious about both of their histories and they are equally good. I couldn't stop reading while I also didn't want to read more, so I wouldn't have to read about new cruelties. Fortunately Dorothy Koomson keeps bringing light after the dark. She's made her story intense, but it's never too heavy too handle. When I Was Invisible made me think about all the girls who are experiencing the same things as Nika and Roni. In my opinion this is a story that has to be read, a topic that can never get enough attention.
When I Was Invisible is a story that will stay with me for a very long time. I still get tears in my eyes when I'm thinking about this book. It's an impressive novel with two special main characters, which made me feel so many different emotions that it sometimes overwhelmed me. I always love it when a story moves me like that. Every scene is unpredictable and surprising. There are numerous unexpected twists and turns and eventually everything comes together in a fitting and really strong ending. It still amazes me and I can't stop thinking about it. If you can handle a story about a difficult topic that will make you cry many times you should definitely read this book, it's absolutely brilliant.