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.
by Alice Hoffman
Narrator: Jessie Mueller
Length: 7 hours and 44 minutes
Genres: Historical Fiction
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate
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.
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.The Invisible Hour by Alice Hoffman narrated by Jessie Mueller delivered a time-slip tale that will captivate you. #audiobookreview Click To Tweet
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