The Invisible Girls: A Memoir by Sarah Thebarge, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
The Invisible Girls: A Memoir

The Invisible Girls: A Memoir

4.8 10
by Sarah Thebarge
     
 

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Twenty-seven-year-old Sarah Thebarge had it all: a Yale graduate working on her second Ivy League degree and browsing engagement rings with her boyfriend, her future seemed assured. Then the unthinkable happened: Sarah was diagnosed with breast cancer. Eighteen months of grueling treatments destroyed her body, her relationship, and her faith, leaving her

Overview

Twenty-seven-year-old Sarah Thebarge had it all: a Yale graduate working on her second Ivy League degree and browsing engagement rings with her boyfriend, her future seemed assured. Then the unthinkable happened: Sarah was diagnosed with breast cancer. Eighteen months of grueling treatments destroyed her body, her relationship, and her faith, leaving her feeling unrecognizable to herself, and invisible to others.

Starting over in Portland, Oregon, a chance encounter on the train with an exhausted African mother and her daughters changes everything. A Somali refugee whose husband had left her, Hadhi was struggling to raise five young daughters, half a world a way from her war torn homeland. Alone in a strange country, Hadhi and the girls were on the brink of starvation in their own home, "invisible" to their neighbors and to the world. As Sarah helped Hadhi and the girls navigate American life, her outreach to the family became a source of courage and a lifeline for herself.

Poignant, at times shattering, Sarah Thebarge's riveting memoir ultimately challenges each one of us to step out of our comfort zone and see even the most marginalized "invisible" people for who they really are.

Editorial Reviews

author of The Silence of Mockingbirds: The Memoir of a Murder - Karen Spears Zacharias
"Intertwining her own excruciating story of loss and rejection with the stirring story of a family of Somali refugees, The Invisible Girls is a testament to unwavering tenacity, resilient faith, and ineffable grace."
author of Angry Conversations With God - Susan E. Isaacs
"I picked up Invisible Girls and could not put it down. Thebarge fixes a loving eye on a family of Somali girls and an unflinching eye on her harrowing ordeal with breast cancer. No one can lead you out of a desert better than the one who's already been there. Beautiful writer, beautiful book, beautiful soul."
Randy Alcorn
"Honest, enlightening, heart-touching and, at just the right times, funny. Sarah's expertly-crafted sentences sing and sometimes sting, flowing smoothly, then suddenly jumping off the page. The interweaving of her story with that of a Somali mother and daughters is masterful. This isn't the American dream. It's a vibrant and authentic story of loss, disenchantment, discovery, and a reawakening of faith and hope."
Rick McKinley
"A raw, honest and powerful witness of the dangerous mercy of God...Her story will humble you and inspire you."
author of Angry Conversations With God Susan E. Isaacs
"I picked up Invisible Girls and could not put it down. Thebarge fixes a loving eye on a family of Somali girls and an unflinching eye on her harrowing ordeal with breast cancer. No one can lead you out of a desert better than the one who's already been there. Beautiful writer, beautiful book, beautiful soul."
author of The Silence of Mockingbirds: The Mem Karen Spears Zacharias
"Intertwining her own excruciating story of loss and rejection with the stirring story of a family of Somali refugees, The Invisible Girls is a testament to unwavering tenacity, resilient faith, and ineffable grace."
author of Storyline and Blue Like Jazz Don Miller
"Wonderfully written, the book will have you staring through it, into a world that seems to have been made new. I am grateful there are new writers in the world like Sarah Thebarge. You'll get caught up in the strength of her kindness and the girls she describes even as we gain our focus to slowly see them, and so many others, for ourselves."
World Magazine
"This memoir combines good writing, dramatic events, and a thoughtful response to them."
From the Publisher
"This memoir combines good writing, dramatic events, and a thoughtful response to them."—World Magazine"

Wonderfully written, the book will have you staring through it, into a world that seems to have been made new. I am grateful there are new writers in the world like Sarah Thebarge. You'll get caught up in the strength of her kindness and the girls she describes even as we gain our focus to slowly see them, and so many others, for ourselves."—Don Miller, author of Storyline and Blue Like Jazz"

Intertwining her own excruciating story of loss and rejection with the stirring story of a family of Somali refugees, The Invisible Girls is a testament to unwavering tenacity, resilient faith, and ineffable grace."—Karen Spears Zacharias, author of The Silence of Mockingbirds: The Memoir of a Murder"

Honest, enlightening, heart-touching and, at just the right times, funny. Sarah's expertly-crafted sentences sing and sometimes sting, flowing smoothly, then suddenly jumping off the page. The interweaving of her story with that of a Somali mother and daughters is masterful. This isn't the American dream. It's a vibrant and authentic story of loss, disenchantment, discovery, and a reawakening of faith and hope."—Randy Alcorn, author of Heaven and If God is Good"

I picked up Invisible Girls and could not put it down. Thebarge fixes a loving eye on a family of Somali girls and an unflinching eye on her harrowing ordeal with breast cancer. No one can lead you out of a desert better than the one who's already been there. Beautiful writer, beautiful book, beautiful soul."—Susan E. Isaacs, author of Angry Conversations With God"

A raw, honest and powerful witness of the dangerous mercy of God...Her story will humble you and inspire you."—Rick McKinley, Lead Pastor of Imago Dei Community in Portland, OR and author of A Kingdom Called Desire and This Beautiful Mess

author of Half the Church Carolyn Custis James
"[Sarah Thebarge's] story is a double gift because her raw, honest wrestlings with God free us to be honest with God ourselves, and because her generous passion for The Invisible Girls reveals the healing that comes from pouring our broken selves out for others. Sarah's writing reminds me of Lauren Winner. I loved this wonderful book!"
VOYA, August 2014 (Vol. 37, No. 3) - Caitlin Augusta
Thebarge relates the heartbreaking diagnosis and treatments for breast cancer she experienced in her twenties while at Yale University. After several surgeries, a cancer recurrence, and a broken engagement, Thebarge left Connecticut for Portland, Oregon, and a new start. There she started a casual conversation with a Somali mother, Hadhi, and her five girls on the train. That contact became a life-changing relationship as Sarah doggedly pursued resources and opportunities for the family. All proceeds of the book will support the girls’ college funds. This memoir holds an immediate, heartbreaking quality that makes it a page-turner despite a few structural problems. Thebarge emerges as a woman strong enough to realize her worth yet vulnerable enough to be torn down by despair and the negative opinions of others. Her desire for social justice and search for faith in the microcosm of this one Somali family is laudable, yet Herculean. The difficulties of immigrant life emerge clearly in her descriptions. Time sequences may be challenging for readers. Thebarge shares episodes from her childhood, from Connecticut, and from Oregon, but their order is not always clear, and her transitions could be stronger. Like other memoirs, the story seems incomplete: Thebarge and Hadhi search for meaning, but Thebarge’s abrupt conclusion offers none. Teen readers who like stories of triumph over adversity or social justice may make a heartfelt connection despite the open ending. Reviewer: Caitlin Augusta; Ages 15 to Adult.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781455523917
Publisher:
FaithWords
Publication date:
04/16/2013
Pages:
260
Sales rank:
1,141,562
Product dimensions:
5.70(w) x 8.30(h) x 1.10(d)

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Meet the Author

Sarah Thebarge is a speaker and author who grew up as a pastor's kid in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. She earned a masters degree in Medical Science from Yale School of Medicine and was studying Journalism at Columbia University when she was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 27. Sarah's writing has appeared in Christianity Today, BurnsideWriters.com, Relevant, TheOoze.com, Raysd, and Just Between Us. Her writing for Christianity Today's This Is Our City project won first prize from the National Evangelical Press Association. She currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

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