Title: The Weird Sisters
Author: Eleanor Brown
Length: 318 pages
Published: January 20, 2011
Source: public library
Resolutions: Published in 2011 Resolution
Reason for Reading: Michelle at My Books. My Life. gave this a glowing review, so I just had to read it 🙂
Summary from Michelle’s review (I think she best described the book, and very succinctly, too):
Sisters Rose, Bean, and Cordy (named after Shakespeare’s Rosalind, Bianca, and Cordelia, respectively) are not close. Bean left for New York City and Cordy has spent the last seven years freeing her spirit on the road. Only Rose has remained in the small Ohio college town where they grew up.
But the universe has forced the three sisters home. Bean is in trouble and Cordy is pregnant. Their mother is diagnosed with breast cancer while Rose must choose between staying home with her family and finally leaving home with her fiance.
My Thoughts: I loved this book. I haven’t been able to figure out what about it made me like it so much. But there were some things that Brown did in writing this book that I have not seen before. First and foremost: the first person plural narration. While I found this annoying at some points because I caught myself asking, “Okay, who’s narrating now?”, I think it really was something that contributed to why I enjoyed the book so much. If Brown had written the chapters from different points of view, I think the flow of the story would have been lost. And it would have made the book seem like it was for younger people–I have noticed that this is a trait young adult books share a lot. Secondly, I loved the way that Brown incorporated random lines of Shakespeare into the story. Sometimes these lines were in the narration, sometimes in dialogue. But I’m just very glad that Brown chose Shakespeare that I could understand for these little quotes 🙂
The family dynamic in this story was really intriguing. I know that it was pretty imperative to the story for all of the horrible family crap to happen at once–cancer, life-changing decisions, embezzling, and pregnancy. But I mean, come on. What’s the probability that that would ALL happen at once in reality? Aside from the situations the individual family members find themselves in, I really like the relationship between them all, especially between the sisters. That could have something to do with the fact that I have three sisters myself. Of the three sisters in the book, I think I’m most like Rose. I like things to be planned and stable and I could see myself being scared to make certain decisions should they arise, but I’ve never had to make too many life-changing decisions yet–at least not that decisions I had to think hard about. (My life has pretty much fallen into place without much effort on my part. This sometimes scares me, because I think something bad must happen if my life is so good.)
And I loved the location for this story. Barnwell, Ohio is not a real place but from the descriptions of the town, I know where I imagine “Barney” to be: near Wooster, Ohio. It’s got a small college, lots of “country” surrounding it, and it’s about an hour away from Columbus. (Technically Wooster is a fairly large city whether or not it’s summer, but whatever 🙂 ) I haven’t read many books located in Ohio, but I’ve loved them all. (Oh, that’s important to me because I live in Ohio haha)
If you’re interested, Michelle has links to other reviews of this book, so you should check out her site to look at them!