Friday, December 10, 2010

Review: Invisible Life by E. Lynn Harris

Invisible Life
E. Lynn Harris
Series: Invisible Life #1
Publisher: Anchor
Release Date: February 15, 1994
Format: Audio Book
Source: Public Library
Genre: LGBT
Characters: Raymond Tyler
My Rating:

Invisible Life is the story of a young man's coming of age. Law school, girlfriends, and career choices were all part of Raymond Tyler's life, but there were other, more terrifying issues for him to confront. Being black was tough enough, but Raymond was becoming more and more conscious of sexual feelings that he knew weren't "right." He was completely committed to Sela, his longtime girlfriend, but his attraction to Kelvin, whom he had met during his last year in law school, had become more than just a friendship. No matter how much he tried to suppress them, his feelings were deeply sexual.

Fleeing to New York to escape both Sela and Kelvin, Raymond finds himself more confused than ever before. New relationships -- both male and female -- give him enormous pleasure but keep him from finding the inner peace and lasting love he so desperately desires. The horrible illness and death of a friend force Raymond, at last, to face the truth.

This novel chronicles the life and discovery of Raymond Tyler who is struggling with his sexuality. Raymond has had one serious girlfriend since high school until his senior year in college when he falls in love with a man. Raymond has to keep his sexuality a secret because not only is his male love a jock, but they are both black and living in the South.

After college Raymond moves to NYC and leads a somewhat more open bisexual life. He frequents gay bars and has both straight and gay sexual encounters but only the men he has sex with no about the women in his life. Raymond never discloses to the women that he is having sex with that he is also having sex with men.

Raymond runs into the first man he has ever had sex with who is newly engaged to a woman. She too has no idea of the previous relationship her fiancé has had with Raymond. At this time Raymond is newly involved with a married man with kids.

This story kept me engrossed because these situations happen more than people realize. I was drawn in and wanted to see if Raymond would end up settling down with a man or a woman. Or if his bisexuality would cause him to never truly find love because if he settles down with one gender, he’ll have to give up the other.

In the end, I felt that Raymond’s story was left unfinished. I didn’t get any closure with neither of Raymond’s relationships. So hopefully I'll get that in the next book of the series.
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3 comments:

Girl on a Mission said...[Reply]

Great review! I have read every E. Lynn Harris novel and haven't been disappointed. This series is definitely worth reading in order. This is definitely not the end for this character.

Tasha said...[Reply]

This is my first E. Lynn Harris book. One of my co-workers suggested him to me, now I'm looking forward to reading more from him.

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