Fade. Robert Cormier

by Robert Cormier

I love invisible man stories (and enjoyed Cormier as a teen), so it’s no surprise that I found this book enjoyable. Here, the invisibility is genetic, passing from uncle to nephew in a working class family. Along with the power to turn invisible (fade), which comes along right when the boy is entering puberty, comes an evil little voice that tells him to do bad things.

Paul, the main character, has got sex on the brain, as do most boys. He’s crazy about his aunt, on whom he spies and discovers with the local gangster. He is very jealous. He then spies on others, while in the fade, and witnesses pedophilia & incest. This gives him a pretty jaded view of life and he eventually kills the gangster who happens to have been indirectly responsible for hurting his father.

Next generation is Ozzie, from a broken home, who starts killing people he’s mad at and causing a general ruckus. Paul eventually finds him and has to kill him. Last generation is nameless and kills lots of people en masse.

Excellent depiction of descent of society into violent chaos.