The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman

August 21st, 2023 Kimberly Review 10 Comments

21st Aug

Narrated by Jessie Mueller, Alice Hoffman’s newest offering, The Invisible Hour delivers a historical fiction about a cult, and a young woman with a copy of The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Magical Realism at its finest. This story held me captive.

The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman
The Invisible Hour
by Alice Hoffman
Narrator: Jessie Mueller
Length: 7 hours and 44 minutes
Genres: Historical Fiction
Source: Publisher
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star
Heat Level: One FlameOne FlameOne Flame
Narration: 5 cups Speed: 1.5x

One brilliant June day when Mia Jacob can no longer see a way to survive, the power of words saves her. The Scarlet Letter was written almost two hundred years earlier, but it seems to tell the story of Mia’s mother, Ivy, and their life inside the Community—an oppressive cult in western Massachusetts where contact with the outside world is forbidden, and books are considered evil. But how could this be? How could Nathaniel Hawthorne have so perfectly captured the pain and loss that Mia carries inside her?

Through a journey of heartbreak, love, and time, Mia must abandon the rules she was raised with at the Community. As she does, she realizes that reading can transport you to other worlds or bring them to you, and that readers and writers affect one another in mysterious ways. She learns that time is more fluid than she can imagine, and that love is stronger than any chains that bind you.

As a girl Mia fell in love with a book. Now as a young woman she falls in love with a brilliant writer as she makes her way back in time. But what if Nathaniel Hawthorne never wrote The Scarlet Letter? And what if Mia Jacob never found it on the day she planned to die?

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote: “A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities.”

This is the story of one woman’s dream. For a little while it came true.

historical Magical Realism SUSPENSE well written

Confession- When I was in high school, I absolutely loved the required summer reading lists and the discussions that took place in class. Going into ninth grade, The Scarlet Letter was required reading, along with a three others. I loved them. That Mia Jacob, a young girl living in an oppressive cult in western Massachusetts, finds solace in Hawthorne’s story, intrigued me.

The Invisible Hour begins with Mia’s mother and shares their life on the farm. Mia finds comfort in books and sneaks to the town library to get them. She befriends the librarian and hides books in the barn. Their life isn’t easy and Mia pleads with her mother to escape this life. When tragedy strikes, Mia leaves.

When she grabs a copy of The Scarlet Letter, it unlocks a portal of sorts and Mia is able to spend time with the author himself before he has written the book that changed things for her.

The tale highlights cult life, brings a little suspense and transports the listener. The tale has some romance and found family.

Jessie Mueller is a new to me narrator. She did a lovely job of capturing the tone of the story and bringing Mia to life. The production quality was well done. I highly recommend listening. Perfect for fans of historical fiction, magical realism, books and those who are curious about cult life.

Amazon | Audible

The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman narrated by Jessie Mueller delivered a time-slip tale that will captivate you. #audiobookreview Click To Tweet

About Alice Hoffman

Alice Hoffman

Hoffman’s work has been published in more than twenty translations and more than one hundred foreign editions. Her novels have received mention as notable books of the year by The New York Times, Entertainment Weekly, The Los Angeles Times, Library Journal, and People Magazine. She has also worked as a screenwriter and is the author of the original screenplay “Independence Day,” a film starring Kathleen Quinlan and Diane Weist. Her short fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The New York Times, The Boston Globe Magazine, Kenyon Review, Redbook, Architectural Digest, Gourmet, Self, and other magazines. Her teen novel AQUAMARINE was recently made into a film starring Emma Roberts.

About Jessie Mueller

Jessie Mueller

Jessica Ruth “Jessie” Mueller (born February 20, 1983)[1] is an American actress and singer. She started her career in Chicago and won a Joseph Jefferson Award in 2008 for her role as Carrie Pipperidge in Carousel. In 2011, she moved to New York City to star in the Broadway revival of On a Clear Day You Can See Forever. She won the 2014 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Musical for her performance in the lead role of Carole King in Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, and originated the lead role of Jenna in the musical Waitress on Broadway.

caffeinated coffee cup divider

Stay Caffeinated!

Never miss a post by adding Caffeinated to your Inbox

Photo of kimbacaffeinate
About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. Whovian, Ravenclaw, Howler and proud Nonna. She owns and manages Caffeinated PR. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat. Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Leave a Reply

(Enter your URL then click here to include a link to one of your blog posts.)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

10 Responses to “The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman”

  1. Ethan

    I’m right there with you on loving those classic novels we had to read in school. I was always guilty of having read them ahead of the prescribed schedule. I’ll never forget getting in trouble for reading The DaVinci Code when I was supposed to be reading To Kill A Mockingbird. I’d already finished it!

    Ethan recently posted: Triple Cross by James Patterson

    Oh this looks wonderful. Oh Kimberly I wish I loved reading in high school but alas I found it hard to swallow to be “told” what to read 🙂 so yes I was a rebel
    I’ve seen this novel around and now I want it even more. Thanks for the fab review
    btw I could not stand The Scarlet Letter, in fact I even made my in-person book club read it for our classic one year, it didn’t get any better 🙁 sorry

  3. ailyn koay

    I guess that’s one way to revive a lovable classic: making it relatable in modern day scene.