The Invaders by Karolina Waclawiak may be the book that has most surprised me so far this summer. I went into it with absolutely no expectations and I came away deeply satisfied. You can’t say that about every novel.
Waclawiak looks at the fractures in a picture perfect Connecticut neighborhood by focusing on the community’s greatest fears: change and outsiders threatening what they have. Part of this threat comes from the fear of violence – real and imagined, and this violence runs a subtle thread through the whole narrative.
The thing I most appreciated in Waclawiak’s writing was her subtlety. So much is conveyed in what is left unsaid and in sly glances. The male gaze is everywhere and is both threatening, but also yearned for. The story reflects so many of the battles faced in American culture today: us vs. them (whoever they are), expressions of sexuality and need, economic disparities. They way in which all these themes are brought together is what makes The Invaders so compelling.
Who would like this book? If you like a good story that makes you examine the world in which we live, this is a good book for you. It portrays the country club lifestyle that was touted as the ideal for so long and turns it on its head. That white, middle class neighborhood is far more toxic than ever imagined.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley for review consideration.
I’m a big fan of that cover!
Most superficial comment ever?
The cover is what got me too! And the cover is perfect for the book, so go ahead and judge it by it’s cover!
This was one I had on my radar, but haven’t gotten around to reading yet. There have been so many good books to come out this summer, I just can’t keep up! Glad it was a win for you! Sometimes going in with no expectations is such a good way to do it 🙂
It has been a busy summer for summery books, hasn’t it? That’s why i went into this with no expectations. It was more like I requested it on NetGalley and felt I had to read it. But what a happy surprise.
I was going to say the same thing about the cover – it seems to match your description of the book. Which sounds fantastic.
So glad to see a review for this one! I’ve been eyeing it for a while, but hadn’t heard much about it, so it’s nice to see someone enjoyed it so much.
I really liked it. It has a quiet creepiness to it.
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