The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue was written by V.E. Schwab. Schwab has written a variety of books, most of which slot into the fantasy genre but some explore history and science fiction, too.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue follows a young woman, living a poor and desperate life in turbulent 18th-century France. It begins in 1714, as she struggles in an awful marriage and longs to escape, willing to do anything for a new life. So when she is offered an escape she grabs it with both hands, not considering the realities of her sacrifice.
Although she escapes her dreadful relationship, she is forced into an immortal life and cursed as ‘invisible’. Everyone who meets her is destined to forget her, so although she lives in freedom, she will be alone for all eternity.
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue quickly became a New York Times bestseller after its release in 2020 and stayed on the bestseller list for 43 weeks after its original publication. In only one year, this novel sold over 1 million copies worldwide and continues to sell across the globe today.
It became one of the most famous fantasy novels written at the turn of the decade and fans everywhere now eagerly anticipate any further work that V.E. Schwab may write.
Fantasy novels are very popular and rose in popularity during the COVID-19 pandemic. Stuck inside with nowhere to go, many people sought the comfort and escape of a good fantasy book. There, they found action, adventure, thrill, and of course, escape from reality.
Considering this, V.E. Schwab released her book at the perfect time, at the height of the pandemic and this may be a contributing factor as to why her book was so successful shortly after its release.
If you haven’t already read The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, you’re really missing out. This book is jam-packed with emotional, fantastical, and adventurous narratives and will take you on an emotional rollercoaster as you experience Addie’s lonely life first-hand and understand why she went to such lengths to escape her marriage.
If this sounds like something you’d enjoy or if you’re just after a new fantasy read, stick around to find out the top 20 fantasy books that are similar to The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue.
The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett
This was a #1 bestseller in the UK shortly after its release and for good reason! The Versions of Us follows one relationship with three potential futures. Eva and Jim meet in 1958 when Jim rushes to help after Eva falls off her bike.
This story follows these two interesting characters through different realities as small choices make large impacts and change their relationships for better or for worse.
The History of Living Forever by Jake Wolff
Conrad’s lover, Sammy, suddenly died, leaving a huge hole in Conrad’s life. While struggling with grief, Conrad finds years’ worth of notebooks holding crucial information about his partner. It turns out Sammy was an alchemist, who dedicated his work to finding a mythic elixir of life.
As he reads more and more, Conrad becomes more invested and ends up at the epicenter of a huge problem and he must make one big decision to ensure that he doesn’t lose any more of his loved ones. The History of Living Forever is the perfect balance between fantasy and reality, using integral fantastical elements to shed light on real, emotive issues.
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North
As he reaches his 11th death, Harry August receives a crucial piece of information from an unexpected source. One little girl gives him a mysterious message that he takes into his next life.
Unlike the monotonous past 11 lives he has lived, everything is about to change and Harry must decide how to navigate the future with all the information he has gathered from 11 past lives. But he only has 4 left.
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August will illustrate how precious life really is. This book is full of mystery, and yet it is also humorous and emotive. A must-read for any fantasy lover.
This Savage Song by V. E. Schwab
From the same author that wrote The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue comes this brilliant book. If you loved the genre-bending, emotive feel of that book, you’ll love This Savage Song which follows two people, faced with one humanitarian question. In a city completely disrupted by monsters and violence, these two must decide what will be best for their future while simultaneously battling their pasts.
A brilliant story for anyone craving a thought-provoking book filled to the brim with fantasy and monstrous violence.
Pan’s Labyrinth by Guillermo del Toro and Cornelia Funke
This weird and wacky book is inspired by an intriguing film of the same name. The director, del Toro, and the esteemed author, Funke, join forces to create an immersive, atmospheric novel that will play on folklore, dive into complex characters, and merge fantasy with reality in their war-torn, fantastical setting.
Pan’s Labyrinth is disturbing, unpredictable, and moving, guaranteed to take you on an emotional journey.
The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake
Diving into the magical underbelly of global history, students will work and investigate from within the secret magical society’s London Headquarters and prove themselves capable of surviving as magical academics.
The Atlas Six follows a year of study, constructed almost like a probation period but what many don’t know is that their lives are on the line, and if they don’t reach initiation, they may not survive at all.
Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi
This has been one of the most sought-after books in recent years. With a little helping hand from social media, Before the Coffee Gets Cold has become one of the most popular books of the decade and has been widely anticipated as Kawaguchi released the two next novels in the series.
These books follow a small cafe in Japan, known for allowing people to travel back in time and spend time with their loved ones, make amends with enemies, or undo a regret. However, there are a bunch of regulations attached which can all have devastating consequences if not obeyed. These stories are moving and enlightening, and shed light on the importance of connection.
The Book of Living Secrets by Madeleine Roux
Adelle and Connie are both obsessed with a gothic romance book called Moira. The book is not well-known and so, when an odd man approaches them asking if they’d like to delve into the book themselves, they think he’s being ridiculous.
But soon they are surrounded by the characters, places, and creatures they knew so well from the pages but it’s not how they remembered it. While the book provided an enchanting, romantic story, the reality is sinister and terrifying. They’ll have to write their way out of the novel before their fantasies become a dark, eternal reality.
The Book of Living Secrets is a mysterious, gripping novel with plenty of twists and turns to keep you engaged.
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
Have you ever wondered what your life would have been like if you made a different decision? Well, The Midnight Library follows this fantastic premise, diving into a library filled with endless amounts of books that tell of the different lives Nora Seed could have lived if she had made different choices.
This is a fabulous book that may help you realize that sometimes ‘what if’ is enough.
The Unbroken by C.L. Clark
This fantasy book is gritty, violent, and politically charged. It follows two characters, Touraine and Luca, one a soldier serving an empire, the other a persuasive member of royalty.
The Unbroken is a story of espionage, military action, political rebellion, betrayal, assassination, and nationality. Brilliant if you’re looking for something a little more action-packed.
The Impossible Us by Sarah Lotz
One couple, destined to be together but thrown into despair. The Impossible Us follows Nick and Bee, a couple that must make crucial choices to ensure their happily ever after.
With engaging twists and emotive turns in every chapter, this novel will provide a fantastic insight into each character and will teach you a lot about your own love story.
Ariadne by Jennifer Saint
This one is a little different, set in ancient Greece and following Ariadne, the Princess of Crete as she navigates a world of gods, goddesses, and mortals.
Ariadne is a story of betrayal, fate, disaster, and individuality. With a feminist spirit and a gripping plot line, there’s no wonder why this book was one of the most well-read novels in its year of release.
End of Days by Susan Ee
This is the last in Ee’s trilogy, so be sure to check out the first two as well. End of Days follows Penryn and Raffe as they live on the run and are desperate for help.
Without giving too much away, this book encapsulates angels and powers and is set on the brink of war. With legacies to uphold and alliances to maintain, this is a story of one tough decision that will change the course of history.
The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness
From the author who brought us the fantastic book A Discovery of Witches, comes this brilliant novel. Merging science-fiction and fantasy, Harkness tells a story of time travel and suspense.
Set in Elizabethan London, Diana and Matthew must solve key mysteries and battle old enemies in order to save their futures. Harkness draws upon A Discovery of Witches in The Book of Life, so be sure to check out that epic fantasy before tuning into this one.
Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune
Under the Whispering Door is a moving tale of death and the afterlife. It follows Wallace as he journeys across to a new life. But Wallace was so young when he died and missed out on so much. So, he is given 7 days to fulfill what many take a lifetime to achieve.
This fantasy is humorous, emotive, and guaranteed to make it on your favorites list.
Piranesi by Susanna Clarke
Susanna Clarke is well-known for her alternative history novel Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell, so this psychological fantasy is out of the ordinary for her but is brilliantly captivating and immersive.
Piranesi follows one man who is trapped in an ancient-Greek-type mansion, filled with pillars, stone ruins, and statues, and set right on the coast. He is isolated and knows nothing about the world or where he is, but he finds clues that lead him down a path of self-discovery and awareness. This book will keep you on the edge the entire way through and its jaw-dropping ending is worth every second of the confusion!
The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner
Set in the 1900s in London, Nella runs a secret apothecary, aimed at helping women escape their marriages or abusive relationships by designing subtle poisons that will kill their husbands without leaving a trace.
The Lost Apothecary flips between the present day and the 18th century and follows one huge suspenseful mystery that encompasses secrecy, complex characters, and fantastic personal stories.
The Ravenous Dark by A.M. Strickland
In this extraordinary world, magicians are trapped and controlled by undead spirits. Rovan is one of these magicians and is eager to escape her confinement.
Through one marvelous love triangle, The Ravenous Dark will immerse you in a whole new world and guide you through a gripping story of trust, betrayal, and enchantment.
The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow
This is a fantastic feminist novel that intertwines fantasy and history. It follows the Eastwood sisters, three women who join the suffragists in New Salem and use their powerful magic to change the course of women’s history.
The Once and Future Witches is a story of sisterhood, friendship, and suffrage. A must-read for any feminist or magic-lover.
Extasia by Claire Legrand
With an unknown evil lurking in the shadows, it is up to her to stand up and save her village. She will be forced to face powerful beasts and unusual enemies and will have to make key decisions that will affect her, her family, and her community respectively.
Extasia is fantastically written, jam-packed with fantastical mystery, and is guaranteed to send shivers down your spine.
Time travel, magic, wondrous lands, and fascinating characters are just a few things you can expect from these 20 brilliant books. If you enjoyed The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, any of these books will give you a similar reading experience.
Frequently Asked Questions
What else has V.E. Schwab written?
She has written a variety of fantasy novels such as A Darker Shade of Magic, Vicious, and Gallant.
How old is V.E. Schwab?
She is only 35 years old but has already produced some fantastic novels.
Is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue suitable for those under 16?
Anyone over the age of 16 should be fine reading this book but be cautious if you’re under the age of 16, as some of the themes are dark.
Is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue an LGBTQ+ novel?
It does not specifically center around LGBTQ+ themes but does include characters with same-sex preferences and could be classed as an LGBTQ+ novel.
What is the best fantasy book ever?
The highest-rated fantasy novels include the Harry Potter series and The Lord of the Rings series but this type of fantasy is very different from V.E. Schwab’s.