Invisible City, by Julia Dahl is the second book read from my gift compilation of four books. I might also add that because there were four books in one I assumed, incorrectly, that these would be ‘old’ novels, published perhaps thirty to forty years ago. However, Invisible City was published on May 6, 2014.
Set among Brooklyn’s Hasidic community this crime story was intriguing especially for this reader whose knowledge of the Hasidic community and most other religions and their practices is very limited.
Invisible City traces the efforts of an aspiring young female stringer (Rebekah Roberts) who is working for the (NY) Tribune. As with The Dead Beat (by Doug Johnstone) this journalist finds herself in the middle of several murders which take some time to unravel, early in her career. To my mind I find that point alone is the hardest concept to grasp.
However, I enjoyed Invisible City and for me that is the main criteria when reading. Did I enjoy it? True, I don’t know if some of the Jewish cultural practices alluded to were/are fact or fiction. Does it really matter? I enjoyed the story.
Most authors take some license when writing to keep their story interesting. And if reality and this story do not match, is it due to pressure from an editor or publisher to keep the story flowing? After all there is nothing worse than a story with pages and pages of detail about a character’s dress, hair, appetite and likes or dislikes.
Invisible City is Book 1 of a Rebekah Roberts series and if I can find book two I will read it and then decide on Book 3. I daresay that it is the latter books which unravel some of Rebekah’s personal issues which were bubbling along in Invisible City.
However, as far as Invisible City is concerned I think it is definitely worth a read…as long as you do not have any religious prejudices as it does focus entirely on the Hasidic community in Brooklyn.
can be purchased on-line at
Fishpond, Booktopia, and Amazon