We have all felt invisible at times. Whether it is in the staff room at work where everyone else is chatting and you feel left out. Or waiting to be served somewhere and it seems as if everyone else is being served first. But what if the one person you feel you should be able to turn to when things go wrong ignores your plight?
This novel tells the story of two girls with the same name. Veronica (Roni) Harper and Veronika (Nika) Harper met when they were eight years old and knew they were immediately destined to become ballerinas. However, life doesn’t always go as planned and both girls, now in their thirties are living invisible lives: one is a nun and one is living homeless on the streets of Birmingham.
Neither planned to be there and the story of how they got there gradually unfolds, told in the first person by both Roni and Nika. What ultimately lies at the heart of this is a betrayal that ran so deep it destroyed both friendships and lives. As Roni leaves the convent overwhelmed by guilt and seeks out Nika to make amends, the novel builds to a tense climax as the true nature of the betrayal is revealed and the many layers of their lives are peeled back.
Some choose to be invisible in our busy society, others feel invisible and lost because of the way they are treated. This moving novel reminds us to listen to others and pay attention to their lives.
By Willow Coby