It's been a sad state of affairs here, and I'm running out of things to read. Went to the actual library and had no luck, so I've been hitting the Ohio E Book Project pretty hard. Since this is verging on "caught up", I thought I would read a grown up book-- I KNOW, right? I'm glad I did, because I found the most amusing book written for women of my semi-advanced age. All of the librarians and teachers who read my blog need to read this one, even Jim and Iron Guy Carl!
Ray, Jeanne. Calling Invisible Women
May 22nd 2012
Clover wakes up one morning and cannot see herself in the mirror. Thinking that she is perhaps having a stroke, she asks her college graduate son (who has moved home because, as a women's studies/history major, he can't find a job) if he can see her, and he doesn't even notice she's not there. Nor does her busy doctor husband. Her good friend, Gilda, does, although her son doesn't. Not quite sure what to do about this turn of events, Clover eventually finds a meeting/support group for invisible women. It turns out, she is not alone. A fair number of women have been taking a combination of Dexter-White drugs (a hormone replacement, a calcium supplement, and an anti-depressant, combined with Botox usage) that has rendered them invisible. This includes Lila Robinson, who taught Clover's daughter and son. Irritated by being invisible and having no one notice, Clover takes matters into her own hands. She convinces Lila to go back to work at the high school and stop students from misbehaving, which is effective but uncomfortable and exhausting for Clover (they have to go around naked if they want to be invisible) but which Lila keeps up with, leaving the principal daily notes on what she has accomplished. After disarming a bank robber and writing a newspaper article about the experience, Clover decides to become more active. Since the Dexter-White people keep postponing meetings, Clover decides she'll take a group and go to the office, and issue an ultimatum. Along the way, we also meet college cheerleader daughter Evie, who is despondent over breaking up with boyfriend Vlad (whose mother is also invisible), and get an interesting view of husband Arthur and son Nick's days.
Strengths: I read so much young adult and middle grade fiction, and occasionally, I want to read books about people my age. There are not many, and the vast majority are either murder mysteries or romance books, which isn't what I want. Still looking for the spy novel about the middle aged librarian, but this was funny and I adored the support group as well as their can-do attitude in taking down Dexter-White. Sure, there's all sort of subtexts about the "invisibility" of older women, but I liked this just because it was FUN.
Weaknesses: Too short! I wish this were more in-depth because I just wanted to keep reading. I may end up buying some copies of this to give as gifts. I didn't quite buy Clover and Arthur's relationship-- he seemed pretty attentive, considering how stressful and hard his job was.