• The Invisible Husband of Frick Island

  • By: Colleen Oakley
  • Narrated by: Sara Sheckells
  • Length: 10 hrs and 46 mins
  • 3.9 out of 5 stars (203 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

“This is the hopeful book we all need right now. I loved it!” (Emily Giffin, number New York Times best-selling author of The Lies That Bind

As Seen on the Today Show

A Southern Living Best Beach Read * A PopSugar Best Book of May * An Us Weekly Summer Beach Staple * A Frolic Under-the-Radar Book of May * An OK Magazine Best Summer Beach Read * An EW.com Best Book of Spring * A Country Living Can't Miss Beach Read * A LibraryReads Pick for May * An Emily Giffin Book Club pick

Sometimes all you need is one person to really see you. 

Piper Parrish's life on Frick Island - a tiny, remote town smack in the middle of the Chesapeake Bay - is nearly perfect. Well, aside from one pesky detail: Her darling husband, Tom, is dead. When Tom's crab boat capsized and his body wasn't recovered, Piper, rocked to the core, did a most peculiar thing: carried on as if her husband was not only still alive, but right there beside her, cooking him breakfast, walking him to the docks each morning, meeting him for their standard Friday night dinner date at the One-Eyed Crab. And what were the townspeople to do but go along with their beloved widowed Piper? 

Anders Caldwell’s career is not going well. A young ambitious journalist, he’d rather hoped he’d be a national award-winning podcaster by now, rather than writing fluff pieces for a small town newspaper. But when he gets an assignment to travel to the remote Frick Island and cover their boring annual Cake Walk fundraiser, he stumbles upon a much more fascinating tale: an entire town pretending to see and interact with a man who does not actually exist. Determined it’s the career-making story he’s been needing for his podcast, Anders returns to the island to begin covert research and spend more time with the enigmatic Piper - but he has no idea out of all the lives he’s about to upend, it’s his that will change the most.

USA Today best-selling author Colleen Oakley delivers an unforgettable love story about an eccentric community, a grieving widow, and an outsider who slowly learns that sometimes faith is more important than the facts.

©2020 Colleen Oakley (P)2020 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“An utterly charming story brimming with heart and humanity. This is the hopeful book we all need right now. I loved it!” (Emily Giffin, number one New York Times best-selling author of The Lies That Bind

"Sweet, quirky, surprising, and altogether lovely, The Invisible Husband of Frick Island is everything I long for in a book. I fell in love with Oakley's sparkling prose, charming characters, and quaint island setting. This is a story I can't wait to revisit, again and again. A must read." (Emily Henry, New York Times best-selling author of Beach Read) 

"A gently told story of grief, community and ambition, The Invisible Husband of Frick Island is imaginative, lovely and full of surprises." (Kristan Higgins, New York Times best-selling author of Always the Last to Know

What listeners say about The Invisible Husband of Frick Island

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What the Frick


Review Anders is given an assignment to cover the cake walk on Frick Island. He gets stuck in the island for the night after missing the last ferry for the day. Anders eats in a local restaurant, keenly aware of how the locals are looking at him. After he returns to the mainland, he receives a mysterious email stating that Anders missed the big story on Frick Island.

Piper has lived on Frick Island since 6th grade. She works at the Bed and Breakfast, the general store, and the conservation center. She is married to Tom, who works a crab boat. One day, Tom and his boat don’t return. A few weeks later, Piper sees Tom and goes through all of their routines. Though no one in town can see Tom, all of the citizens of Frick Island act as if they do.

Anders returns to Frick Island week after week. As the townspeople think he is creating a podcast about climate change, would they accept him if they knew the subject of the podcast?

I loved this book. The characters were well developed and I felt like I was on Frick Island. I wanted to know what happened next. I would like to see into the future of the island in Chesapeake Bay. Colleen Oakley paints a vivid picture of the island and its inhabitants.

I listened to the audiobook. Sara Sheckells gave voice to each character carefully. It was an enjoyable listen.

Thank you Colleen Oakley for this gem. I think I will get this one in print to go with my audio.

4 people found this helpful

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Boring, Not Charming

This book is very slow to get started, and I'm actually not sure it ever really does - I couldn't take it anymore after the 9th chapter. The characters seemed like caricatures of remote islanders, simple-minded and naive. I struggled to care about or like any of them. The narrator doesn't help either - entirely too saccharine, especially the voice for Piper. It's a very interesting concept for a book, but just doesn't deliver.

3 people found this helpful

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Mental Health, Loyalty, Family, Love

Great story dealing with mental health, love, loyalty, family, and death. Easy listening. 4.5 stars out of 5. Would have lived a little more of an ending, but the story is wrapped up nicely.

2 people found this helpful

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Great story !!

Loved the story and the narrator on this story. This is the type of story that where you miss the characters after you finish the book. AKA a great read !!

1 person found this helpful

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not enough island vibes for me

A woman straight outta prison returns to her hometown in the hopes of seeing her daughter who she never had the chance to meet.

I have mixed feelings about this one honestly. While I appreciate Kenna’s need to reunite with her daughter, that motherly pull, and I don’t think she was expecting too much since she didn’t wanna take back that “mother” title per say, I still feel like the events that lead up to the end were unbelievable at times. Imagine returning to the town where “the accident” happened walking into a bar and immediately being attracted to the 1st guy you come across. Not only that but that guy is the ticket to seeing your daughter, and not only that but he’s your old boyfriend’s best friend who you happen to have never met. Yeah, it starts like that.

Through the story the “tragic mistake” that Kenna made is revealed and I’m not sure how I feel about it. While anyone can make a stupid decision, some of those decisions affect other people, sometimes in the worst way possible. Without spoiling what the “tragic mistake” was that’s all I can really say. As a result of what Kenna did, she ended up in prison for 5 years, gave birth while she was in prison, but never got to see her daughter so all she’s been thinking about is “I wanna see my daughter”. Upon her release she takes what money she has returns to the town where her daughter is, gets a place to live, a job, a kitten, and of course meets Ledger, previously mentioned man from the bar. Ledger also happens to be an ex-NFL player, now bar owner, key to Kenna being reunited with her daughter. When they first meet neither one knows who the other is, but as it is revealed Kenna realizes she has an uphill battle because NO ONE wants her anywhere near her daughter. In the process Ledger and Kenna start developing feelings for one another. The story becomes a mix of everyone shutting Kenna out of her daughter’s life and the connection that starts happening between Kenna and Ledger.

I liked the mother/daughter focus of the story. I even liked the romance part, but the “tragic mistake” and the ending just didn’t pull everything together for me like I hoped it would.

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Hated the narrating

Hated the narrating. It made the people sound like they were stupid and there was one that sounded like he was a surfer.

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Drivel

I was trapped in a car with a woman who needed to read this for her book group. We both agreed not to waste any more time trying to finish it.

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boring

I really struggled to finish this book. I was bored during the majority of the book and felt the main characters had minimal chemistry. the narrator's voice for both of the main characters also felt really whiny and was hard to listen to. cute ending though if you van make it to the end

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Refreshing Story

I really enjoyed the story and the narrator. Uplifting story and loved the characters. What a great book.

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Story was fun. Narrator was the worst

I wanted so much to love this book. It was hard to get through the title. This narrator is like a woman doing a comedy bit William Shatner impression. So... many... pauses. Brutal to listen to. Voices were terrible. Being from Maryland, I was confused by the southern and drawling accents. But the pauses... dramatic pauses. Painful. Every second was painful. The story was enjoyable.