09 February 2012

My Thoughts on Eleanor Brown, The Weird Sisters

I accidentally posted this yesterday, so I apologize if your comment got lost in the shuffle, or if you are getting this again in your feed reader.



The Story:

The Weird Sisters tells the story of Rosalind, Bianca and Cordelia, three daughters of a Shakespeare professor who have all returned to their small Ohio hometown to help care for their mother who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.  Each of the sisters has drama of her own that is only magnified because the three haven't been all together in so long.  The narration shifts from sister to sister, revealing changes in the dynamics of their relationships with one another, and with their own internal developments.

What I Liked:
I liked the characters.  Brown develops each of the three sisters into a believable type, all of which might even appear in the same family.  The novel reminded me of J.Courtney Sullivan, who also writes smart sagas of women's lives and whose books I really enjoy.  I also appreciated the bookishness of the book and all of the references to Shakespeare throughout.

What I Could Have Done Without:
I was a little distracted by the use of the third person plural narration.  I didn't think that it was consistent enough for me to grow used to it.  Although there were some parts where it made perfect sense, there were others where it took me out of the narrative.  This is a small thing, but I also didn't find the quoting of Shakespeare to be believable.  Although I did believe that the father might speak in quotes, I found it unlikely that the whole family would.

The Verdict:
I would recommend that fans of J. Courtney Sullivan, or Curtis Sittenfeld keep an eye out for more Eleanor Brown.  I wasn't totally enamored with this novel (just like I wasn't with Man of my Dreams or Commencement), but it was a nice vacation read/ airplane read.  I did see a lot of potential in the writing and the story, however, so I will be looking out for what Brown comes up with next.

***DISCLOSURE:  I received a copy of this book from the publisher for the BlogHer book club, and I will be compensated for my participation in this campaign. All opinions in this post are mine.


Link to the book discussion at Blog Her Book Club: http://www.blogher.com/bookclub/now-reading-weird-sisters


Title: The Weird Sisters

Author: Eleanor Brown
Publisher: Berkley
Date: 2011
Genre: Fiction

353 pages.
Where I got it: I received a copy from the publisher, but I already had one on my shelves, so it counts for the...
Challenges:Mount TBR Challenge








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