Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk

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Sarah Lamphier
SOAPSTone 1st Quarter
Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk

Speaker: The narrator in this story is one that readers can feel like they are emotionally invested in. Nameless, aside from alter ego identities received later on, she is an extremely beautiful until her life is changed completely. Freak accident on the freeway leaves her disfigured and with close no self-esteem, invisible to most: a monster. Hiding under a veil, the story is told from the protagonist’s new point of view as she is forced out of the spotlight. Not only does she crumble inside, but her life also collapses around her.  

Occasion: The occasion is that the speaker, Shannon Mcfarland is an incredibly beautiful supermodel: posing in her life as she is being photographed, admired, and trying to cope with the loss of her brother and the dysfunction of her life at home. Shannon, seems to have the perfect job, boyfriend, and best friend, until all at once, it crashes down on her. The bottom portion of her face and jaw is lost in a violent accident, and suddenly, the life she was accustomed to fades away with betrayal and abandonment from those closest to her. Now, she must go on a journey with her newfound friend, Brandy Alexander, and adapt to the changes, or as the book puts it, “When did the future switch from being a promise to being a threat?”  

Audience: Undoubtedly the niche-audience is the teenagers and young adults. Although, not intended for the faint-hearted, easily offended, or weak The book is most popular in the range of 16-22 for a few different reasons. The first, being very quotable phrases that are relatable to young people who are experiencing angst and trying to figure out what their identity is. A couple excerpts from the book are, “You can only hold a smile for so long, after that it’s just teeth”; “…The only way to find true happiness is to risk being completely cut open”; and “The one you love and the one who loves you are never, ever the same...
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