To say I had high expectations of this book is an understatement. I had heard great things about it, had been hearing great things about it in fact for quite a while before its actual publication. The fact that I follow Eleanor Brown’s partner, J.C. Hutchins, on Twitter only added to the amount of build-up I heard about it. I loved the story idea, loved the look of the book–it has a great cover–and just would have been very disappointed if it hadn’t lived up to my expectations.
That can be the kiss of death for a book, or anything for that matter. When something is so built up, its almost as if it can’t help but fail. How often is reality as good as your fantasy image of what it will be?
In this case, the reality was as good, if not better, than what I had expected. I read this book as quickly as I could because I was stealing whatever moments I could during my day (and night) to read more of it. I didn’t want to put it down because reading it, I became so thoroughly invested in the lives of the characters.
The story revolves around the Andreas sisters; Rose, Bean and Cordy. All three are named after Shakespearean characters (Rosalind, Bianca and Cordelia) because their father is a well-known professor and expert on Shakespeare. Each of the sisters followed a very different path from the others in their adult lives. Rose stayed in their hometown to find work at a college in the area, and is now a well-respected mathematics professor in her own right. Bean goes for the big city life, working at a financial firm in New York and shunning anything to do with small-town life. Cordy, the baby, has so far avoided growing up by living a vagabond’s life on the road. All three find themselves back home after Rose moves there to care for their sick mother, Bean has a personal disaster that causes her to flee the city, and Cordy…well, Cordy needs to figure out her life once and for all.
I enjoyed the interactions between the sisters, loved their Shakespeare-spouting father (having studied Shakespeare quite a bit as an English major) and their gentle but no-nonsense mother. The peripheral characters were also captivating, and the relationships between all of the characters are what made this book so hard to put down.
I would recommend this book to anyone who loves a good story, because that is exactly what it is.
Rating: 5 stars
- Interview: Author Eleanor Brown Talks “Sisters” and Shakespeare (seattlest.com)
- ‘Weird Sisters’ bond goes beyond Bard (boston.com)