The Visibles: A Novel

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The only piece of information that Summer Davis takes away from her years at Peninsula Upper School -- one of the finest in the Brooklyn Heights-to-Park Slope radius, to quote the promotional materials -- is the concept that DNA defines who we are and forever ties us to our relatives. A loner by circumstance, a social outcast by nature, and a witty and warm narrator of her own unimaginable chaos by happenstance, Summer hangs on to her interest in genetics like a life raft, in an adolescence marked by absence: her beautiful, aloof mother abandons the family without a trace; her father descends into mental illness, haunted by a lifelong burning secret and abetted by a series of letters that he writes to make sense of his feelings; her best friend Claire drifts out of Summer's life in a breeze of indifference, feigned on both sides; and her older brother fluctuates between irrational fury and unpredictable tenderness in an inaccessible world of his making.

Uncertain of her path and unbalanced by conflicting impulses toward hope and escape, Summer stays close to her father while attending college, taking him to electro-shock therapy treatments and trying to make sense of his inscrutable past. Upon his departure for a new and possibly recovered life, Summer begins to question the role of genetics and whether she is destined to live out her family's legacy of despair. But it is only when Summer decides to leave New York herself and put off a promising science career to take care of her great-aunt Stella -- bedrock of the family and bastion of folksy wisdom, irreverent insight, and Sinatra memorabilia in a less-than-scenic part of the Pennsylvanian countryside -- that Summer begins to learn that her biography doesn't have to define her...and that her future, like her DNA, belongs to her alone.

In a novel consumed by the uncertainties of science, the flaws of our parents, and enough loss and longing to line a highway, Sara Shepard is a penetrating chronicler of the adolescence we all carry into adulthood: how what happens to you as a kid never leaves you, how the fallibility of your parents can make you stronger, and how being right isn't as important as being wise. From the backwoods of Pennsylvania to the brownstones of Brooklyn Heights, The Visibles investigates the secrets of the past, and the hidden corners of our own hearts, to find out whether real happiness is a gift or a choice.
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From Sara Shepard, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Little Liars, comes The Heiresses—a novel about the Saybrooks, a diamond family blessed with beauty and fortune yet plagued by a string of tragic and mysterious deaths.

The only thing more flawless than a Saybrook’s solitaire is the family behind the diamond empire. Beauties, entrepreneurs, debutantes, and mavens, the Saybrooks are the epitome of high society. Anyone would kill to be one of them. But be careful what you wish for, because if you were a Saybrook, you’d be haunted by secrets and plagued by a dark streak of luck.

Tragedy strikes the prominent family yet again on a beautiful morning in May when thirty-four-year-old Poppy, the most remarkable Saybrook of them all, flings herself from the window of her office. Everyone is shocked that someone so perfect would end her own life—until her cousins receive an ominous warning: One heiress down, four to go.

Was it suicide . . . or murder? And who will be next: Aster, the beautiful but reckless girl who’s never worked a day in her life—and who’s covering up her father’s darkest secret? Her older sister, Corrine, whose meticulously planned future is about to come crashing down around her? Perhaps it will be Natasha, the black sheep of the family who suddenly disinherited herself five years ago. Or maybe the perpetually single Rowan, who had the most to gain from her cousin’s death.

A gripping, edge-of-your-seat thriller about heiresses who must uncover a dark truth about their family before they lose the only thing money can’t buy: their lives.

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From the New York Times bestselling author of the Pretty Little Liars series comes a thriller “blending Hitchcock, S.J. Watson, and Ruth Ware” (Entertainment Weekly) filled with half-truths, suppressed memories, and ingenious twists.

When Eliza Fontaine is rescued from the bottom of a hotel pool just a few weeks before her first novel is going to be published, her family assumes that it’s another failed suicide attempt. But Eliza swears she was pushed. The problem is she remembers little of that night, a result of the large quantity of alcohol she consumed and a worsening struggle with memory loss due to a brain tumor. Feeling ignored and vulnerable, she decides she must find the truth of what actually happened.

As she searches for answers, something very peculiar begins to happen: The people closest to her start to confuse the events in her novel with those in her real life. The dividing line between fact and fiction seems to be dissolving, and even Eliza is becoming uncertain about where her protagonist’s story ends and hers begins. She glimpses a shadowy presence hovering nearby, a mirror image of herself…but is it all in her head or is there really someone following her, studying her, wishing to do her harm? Perhaps the answers to all her questions already exist in the pages of her novel, if only she could put the pieces together in the right way.

The Elizas is a heart-pounding, Hitchcockian double narrative composed of secrets, lies, false memories, and an unreliable narrator you’ll never forget.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
May 5, 2009
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Pages
304
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ISBN
9781416597735
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / Literary
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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A stunning evocation of the shifting emotional landscape of a man who has lost his way and a daughter who cannot find her father, No One is an intimate novel of love and loss. Cleaning up her father’s home after his death, Gwenaëlle Aubry discovered a handwritten, autobiographical manuscript with a note on the cover: “to novelize.” The title was The Melancholic Black Sheep, but the subtitle An Inconvenient Specter had been crossed out. The specter? Her father’s disabling bipolar disorder. Aubry had long known that she wanted to write about her father; his death, and his words, gave her the opportunity to explain his many absences—even while he was physically present—and to sculpt her memory of him. No One is the portrait of a man without a true self; a one-time distinguished lawyer and member of the Paris bar who imagined himself in many important roles—a procession of doubles, a population of masks—who became a drifter and frequent visitor to mental institutions. Moving between the voices of daughter and father, this fictional memoir in dictionary form investigates the many men behind the masks, and a unified portrait evolves. A describes her father’s adopted persona as Antonin Artaud, the poet/playwright; B is for James Bond; H is for homeless; and, finally, Z is for Zelig, the Woody Allen character who could transform his appearance to that of the people around him. Letter by letter, Aubry gives shape and meaning to the father who had long disappeared from her view. The whole is a beautifully written, vivid exploration of a particular experience of mental illness and what it can reveal more generally about human experience.
From Sara Shepard, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Pretty Little Liars, comes The Heiresses—a novel about the Saybrooks, a diamond family blessed with beauty and fortune yet plagued by a string of tragic and mysterious deaths.

The only thing more flawless than a Saybrook’s solitaire is the family behind the diamond empire. Beauties, entrepreneurs, debutantes, and mavens, the Saybrooks are the epitome of high society. Anyone would kill to be one of them. But be careful what you wish for, because if you were a Saybrook, you’d be haunted by secrets and plagued by a dark streak of luck.

Tragedy strikes the prominent family yet again on a beautiful morning in May when thirty-four-year-old Poppy, the most remarkable Saybrook of them all, flings herself from the window of her office. Everyone is shocked that someone so perfect would end her own life—until her cousins receive an ominous warning: One heiress down, four to go.

Was it suicide . . . or murder? And who will be next: Aster, the beautiful but reckless girl who’s never worked a day in her life—and who’s covering up her father’s darkest secret? Her older sister, Corrine, whose meticulously planned future is about to come crashing down around her? Perhaps it will be Natasha, the black sheep of the family who suddenly disinherited herself five years ago. Or maybe the perpetually single Rowan, who had the most to gain from her cousin’s death.

A gripping, edge-of-your-seat thriller about heiresses who must uncover a dark truth about their family before they lose the only thing money can’t buy: their lives.

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BuzzFeed | 5 Best Thrillers of Spring
BookBub | 17 Great New Books Coming in 2018
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From the New York Times bestselling author of the Pretty Little Liars series comes a thriller “blending Hitchcock, S.J. Watson, and Ruth Ware” (Entertainment Weekly) filled with half-truths, suppressed memories, and ingenious twists.

When Eliza Fontaine is rescued from the bottom of a hotel pool just a few weeks before her first novel is going to be published, her family assumes that it’s another failed suicide attempt. But Eliza swears she was pushed. The problem is she remembers little of that night, a result of the large quantity of alcohol she consumed and a worsening struggle with memory loss due to a brain tumor. Feeling ignored and vulnerable, she decides she must find the truth of what actually happened.

As she searches for answers, something very peculiar begins to happen: The people closest to her start to confuse the events in her novel with those in her real life. The dividing line between fact and fiction seems to be dissolving, and even Eliza is becoming uncertain about where her protagonist’s story ends and hers begins. She glimpses a shadowy presence hovering nearby, a mirror image of herself…but is it all in her head or is there really someone following her, studying her, wishing to do her harm? Perhaps the answers to all her questions already exist in the pages of her novel, if only she could put the pieces together in the right way.

The Elizas is a heart-pounding, Hitchcockian double narrative composed of secrets, lies, false memories, and an unreliable narrator you’ll never forget.
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