Review of Invisible by Lorena McCourtney (Ivy Malone Series Book 1) (2004)

Bottom line: A fun mystery with a strong Christian presence. If you are looking for a new series to try that isn’t too intense, give this book a shot – especially since it’s free.

Rating: Recommended


She’s not your average crime fighter! Meet Ivy Malone, an inconspicuous older woman who has a mutant curiosity gene that often lands her in trouble. Unlike most women her age, she snoops and pries her gray-haired self into one hilarious escapade after another. So when vandals romp through the local cemetery, Ivy can’t help but put her snooping eyes to work as she launches her own unofficial investigation. Despite her unconventional sleuthing, Ivy soon becomes discouraged by her failure to turn up any solid clues. And after Ivy witnesses something ominous and unexplained, she can’t resist putting her investigative powers to work again. Even the authorities’ attempts to keep her out of danger and her nosy neighbor’s match-making schemes can’t slow Ivy down. But will the determination that fuels this persistent, spunky sleuth threaten her very safety?


I tried this book because it was free, and I’m glad I did. It’s simply a fun read. The writing style at times I found to be a little rambling, with excessive explanations and tangents, but it didn’t really bother me. Normally this kind of thing makes me very impatient to get on with the story, but the main character, Ivy, is someone you don’t mind spending extra time with.

One thing to be aware of is that Ivy is a born again Christian, and this features prominently in the book. At times it comes across as preachy (at one point Ivy worries about asking a friend to try to get some information for her, because it had encouraged the friend to create “fabrications”) but mostly I found it a natural extension of Ivy’s character and the world she lives in.

The mystery itself was well done, as is the way that Ivy and the readers discover the hows and whys of it all. I’ve read the next two books in the series, and found them to be very similar in terms of tone (light hearted) but with different enough settings and mysteries to continue to interest me. I’d bought the next two books at intervals of maybe a month apart when I wanted a new yet familiar mystery to read, and they both fit the bill perfectly.

Available: Free E-book at Barnes & Noble, Amazon and iTunes, and also available as a paperback.

More Info: Check out the author’s website here.

What did you think? Did you like the book?


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  1. #1 by Lorena McCourtney on March 25, 2012 - 10:15 pm

    Thanks for your nice comments on my Ivy Malone books. I had a lot of fun writing these books because, like Ivy, I’m beginning to have a strong feeling of occasional “invisibility,” From the responses I’ve received a good many other women – both young and old! – also have this feeling.

  2. #2 by lectorsbooks on March 26, 2012 - 4:35 pm

    Thanks for stopping by! I definitely have times where I feel invisible too. I may be young, but I’m quiet – which should not affect my visibility, but sure seems to. 🙂

  3. #3 by Debi Morton on April 12, 2012 - 10:13 pm

    I just finished this book and really liked it. I had already downloaded because I found it free on the Kindle website, but decided to go ahead and read it based on your recommendation. Your review was right on the mark. It was light and fun, but a good mystery and held my interest well. The Christian undertones didn’t interfere with the story (I’m a Christian, so maybe that’s why I didn’t mind them) and, as you said, just seemed to be part of Ivy’s character. Thanks for recommending this book. I’ll probably go ahead and read the other two in the series, as well.

    • #4 by lectorsbooks on April 13, 2012 - 3:24 pm

      So glad you liked it! Hope you enjoy the others as well.

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