Sun, August 4, 2013

Transparent by Natalie Whipple Review

Transparent book cover

Transparent book cover

By Natalie Whipple
Publication date: May 21, 2013
HarperTeen, 350 pages
Source: Publisher

Plenty of teenagers feel invisible. Fiona McClean actually is.

An invisible girl is a priceless weapon. Fiona’s own father has been forcing her to do his dirty work for years—everything from spying on people to stealing cars to breaking into bank vaults.

After sixteen years, Fiona’s had enough. She and her mother flee to a small town, and for the first time in her life, Fiona feels like a normal life is within reach. But Fiona’s father isn’t giving up that easily.

Of course, he should know better than anyone: never underestimate an invisible girl.

— description

It seems to me this is the summer of “pros and cons” reviews. I’d do anything for a book I am just raving over…but at the same time, at least most of the books I’m reading are pretty enjoyable.

For me, Transparent by Natalie Whipple fit right in with the mix.

On the plus side, the story was extremely compelling: Fiona is invisible, and her father is using her as the key player in his crime ring. Pretty darn cool. And I loved the X-Men factor here: Genetic modifications have gone wrong and people are born with varying special skills. Double cool.

Also on the plus side, it was stronger than the other invisibility book of the year, aptly titled Invisibility by Andrew Cremer and David Levithan. You can click the link to read my review of that one.

But, still, the world-building was pretty much limited to a throwaway sentence or two, and I really would have loved a richer sci-fi backstory. And bits of the romance were totally obvious to me, though I think they were supposed to be a surprise.

Like I said: Pros and cons, but ultimately I had a pretty good time while reading this. Still…mostly, for me, it’s been the summer of sequels. Where is that WOW standalone I’ve been waiting for?

Anna Reads young adult book blog

Share this:
Facebook Twitter Email
Posted by: Anna   •   In: natalie whipple


  1. We Heart YA said:

    Glad you enjoyed this. It’s definitely a good, light summer read. What we enjoyed most about it were the cast of characters, and the surprising depth in the themes of identity and family.


    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

  2. YA Book Queen said:

    This sounds like a great library check-out! I’m a sucker for novels that have an X-Men factor, so this sounds very fun. That’s too bad that there wasn’t quite enough backstory, though.

    Nice review 🙂


    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

  3. Jen @ Pop! Goes The Reader said:

    It’s a shame that you’ve yet to find that one book to really knock you off your feet this sumer, but there’s certainly something to be said for consistency and a simple, enjoyable story. While it sounds as though this novel wasn’t without its fair share of flaws, the premise reminds me a little of the big movie blockbusters that come out every summer – They might not have the best story or characterization, but they’re usually a lot of fun and something different to enjoy 😀


    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

  4. Tara said:

    All I can think of is the other Invisibility book and I’m not sure I can give invisibility another shot. (That sounds weird, but ya know)


    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

  5. Brianna said:

    I would love a standalone, period, end of story, whether it wows me or not. I can’t keep up with all the series that come out every month.


    Anna Reply:



    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

  6. Bookworm1858 said:

    I found the writing of this book compelling enough but didn’t get hooked to the characters or storyline. I feel like my summer reading has been pretty similar with a lot of cons to weigh out any pros I notice.


    Posted on: Sun, August 4, 2013

Leave a comment




Comment   Some HTML okay. No links, please.