The Weird Sisters Author:Eleanor Brown A major new talent tackles the complicated terrain of sisters, the power of books, and the places we decide to call home. There is no problem that a library card can't solve. The Andreas family is one of readers. Their father, a renowned Shakespeare professor who speaks almost entirely in verse, has named his three daughters after famous Sha... more »kespearean women. When the sisters return to their childhood home, ostensibly to care for their ailing mother, but really to lick their wounds and bury their secrets, they are horrified to find the others there. See, we love each other. We just don't happen to like each other very much. But the sisters soon discover that everything they've been running from -- one another, their small hometown, and themselves -- might offer more than they ever expected.« less
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The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown is about three sisters who move back home to care for their mother who has breast cancer. Rose is the oldest and had already moved back to tend to both aging parents, whether they needed help or not. Shes the mother hen, the one who takes control, the one who willingly and begrudgingly heaps responsibility on her own shoulders. Bianca, aka Bean, is the middle sister. Shes a self-centered thirty-year old who sucks up attention much like a smoker inhales a cigarette. She also a thief, an embezzler. But wait! Theres more. Youll have to read about her other alluring attributes, but I will tell you that I would vote her least likely to choose as a friend. She irked me. Finally, theres the twenty-seven-year-old baby, Cordelia. Cordy is a free spirit, a nomad, a wanderer. Shes also pregnant, something she picked up along her travels.
The sisters are so different that they dont always get along. Brown writes, See, we love one another. We just dont happen to like one another very much. While the differences grate on their relationships, they are all bound by one thing; they love books. They grew up reading anything and everything. Books are like oxygen and they will pick up any book just as long as theyre reading. Their dad is a professor of English who has devoted his life to Shakespeare. He only speaks Shakespearean, a language Im neither familiar with nor really tempted to learn right now. But in their family its somehow endearing to the girlsfor me, not so much. I prefer to converse with my parents in non-riddles. All three sisters are named after Shakespearean characters, and the weird sisters refers to the witches in Macbeth.
The good news is, you dont have to be a Bard fan to like this book. Its about the sister dynamics and their individual struggles. I wasn't so sure I was going to like the book, since I cannot truly relate to any of the characters. But I did like it, probably for just that reason. It brought me into an unfamiliar world. I think the novel would be a good candidate for a book club selection, because the discussion could center not only around sisters in general, or these particular sisters, but also about each of their personalities. Read other reviews at http://readinginthegarden.blogspot.com
I found The Weird Sisters to be a good, not great, novel about a trio of sisters and how the roles they assumed in childhood, mainly due to birth order, follow them into adulthood. In the book, their roles are often a crutch or excuse used by the sisters to prevent growth, change or embracing the unknown. Likewise, the other siblings and parents (a Shakespeare-spouting father and cancer-stricken mother) use the roles to keep the sisters in stereotypical pigeon holes. I enjoyed reading the sisters' journey of self-discovery and renewal as well as the description of life in a college town. I found the narrator's voice (first person, plural) distracting.
I truly enjoyed this tale of three (not so weird) sisters and the stories of their coming onto adulthood. It's a testament to the fact that change is good and it IS possible to rewrite your story...and have a happy ending. I think the most interesting thing about this book in addition to all the Shakespearean references, was the voice. The author calls it "first person plural, narrated in the voices of all three sisters." At first, it did make me stop and think about who was speaking. Something would happen to one sister and suddenly all three were commenting upon it. This was very weird, but I came to enjoy its unique perspective. All in all, a very enjoyable book.
About 25 pages into this book, I was disappointed in the mood and feeling the story gave me. Sardonic is the best way I can describe it. But I persisted, as is my way, and by the end of the book I loved it.
It's the story of a family--parents and three sisters--who come back together due to a family crisis. It's a family of readers, and I mean READERS. Shakespeare has become an integral part of their everyday lives and conversation. The writing is outstanding. By the end of the story, each of the sisters has traveled a journey of self discovery, and the reader feels a part of it. Great read.
I liked this much better than I expected to. It has shades of chick lit (three sisters come home to care for their sick mother and deal with their problems) but rises above with its unusual narration. There was also a great appreciation for the role of books in peoples' lives.