Okay, readers! Today we have a walking tour of Fremont, the Seattle Neighborhood in which Liz Gallagher chose to set her debut YA novel, The Opposite of Invisible! Join us for an insider's look at the views and vistas...
Take it away LIZ!
The setting in The Opposite of Invisible –Seattle, mainly its Fremont neighborhood – is central to the atmosphere of the book. The constant drizzle and gray skies make cozy moments between main characters Alice and Jewel that much cozier (they practically live inside of their sweatshirt hoods!), and the weather also helps to highlight how uncomfortable being exposed can feel.
Plus, Fremont is quirky. It’s awesome. And I’m lucky enough to be living there right now, so I took some photos of the places Jewel and Alice wander through.
Let’s just get the obvious thing out of the way: Fremont has a lot of coffee shops!
This coffee shop is ultra-super-special to Opposite and to me because it’s where I sat to write most of the novel! It’s also a place that Alice and Jewel (and Alice’s dad) frequent.
A couple of big scenes happen at the Fremont Troll – a mixed-media (including one real VW Beetle) sculpture that was built in 1990 after its design won a competition put on by the Fremont Arts Council. I found it difficult in the book to describe just how huge the Troll is – so I put myself in there for scale in the photo! You can also catch a glimpse of the troll in the movie 10 Things I Hate About You. And if you’re ever there in person, you’re only half a block from my apartment. In my mind, Alice lives a block to the left of the Troll, if you’re looking straight at him, and Jewel lives about a block in the other direction.
This next Fremont landmark is another big one. It’s not actually in the book, but Alice and Jewel definitely see it pretty much every day. Alice has a secret hope that someone will decorate the Bus Stop for her high school graduation. It’s odd that this photo was snapped on a day when no decorations were up – these statues celebrate lots of birthdays, graduations, and births! The Fremont Bridge is in the background.
It’s not a landmark, but this decorative glass flower would definitely catch Alice’s eye. Its in the gate outside of – what else? – a coffee shop.
Speaking of things that Alice would notice, this sign would definitely be something she’d appreciate. And it’s the kind of thing Jewel might actually be the mind behind.
That little bunny happens to live right next door to the junk shop I had in mind when I wrote the scene where Alice finds the perfect witch costume . . .
And, last but never least, Rain City is the video shop where Alice and Jewel get the DVDs that they do lots of bonding over.
And here I am at Rain City, Silly Author.
Thanks so much, LIZ! Now we all want to move to Fremont...