This is the "delightful" (People) New York Times bestseller that's earned raves from Sarah Blake, Helen Simonson, and reviewers everywhere-the story of three sisters who love each other, but just don't happen to like each other very much...
Three sisters have returned to their childhood home, reuniting the eccentric Andreas family. Here, books are a passion (there is no problem a library card can't solve) and TV is something other people watch. Their father-a professor of Shakespeare who speaks almost exclusively in verse-named them after the Bard's heroines. It's a lot to live up to.
The sisters have a hard time communicating with their parents and their lovers, but especially with one another. What can the shy homebody eldest sister, the fast-living middle child, and the bohemian youngest sibling have in common? Only that none has found life to be what was expected; and now, faced with their parents' frailty and their own personal disappointments, not even a book can solve what ails them...
You don't have to have a sister or be a fan of the Bard to love Brown's bright, literate debut, but it wouldn't hurt. Sisters Rose (Rosalind; As You Like It), Bean (Bianca; The Taming of the Shrew), and Cordy (Cordelia; King Lear)--the book-loving, Shakespeare-quoting, and wonderfully screwed-up spawn of Bard scholar Dr. James Andreas--end up under one roof again in Barnwell, Ohio, the college town where they were raised, to help their breast cancer stricken mom. The real reasons they've trudged home, however, are far less straightforward: vagabond and youngest sib Cordy is pregnant with nowhere to go; man-eater Bean ran into big trouble in New York for embezzlement, and eldest sister Rose can't venture beyond the "mental circle with Barnwell at the center of it." For these pains-in-the-soul, the sisters have to learn to trust love--of themselves, of each other--to find their way home again. The supporting cast--removed, erudite dad; ailing mom; a crew of locals; Rose's long-suffering fianc --is a punchy delight, but the stage clearly belongs to the sisters; Macbeth's witches would be proud of the toil and trouble they stir up.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Self-proclaimed Weird Sister
My mom handed me the book with a promise of parallels in our "weird" family. The author did an excellent job of providing a voice for the individuals and the sisters as one mind. Reminiscent of Kingsolver's Poisonwood Bible. I'm not sure exactly which sister(s) I identify with, but I think each of us can find a piece of herself here, and maybe even one we're proud of...
The Youngest weird sis
You either know these people or you are one. The love,jealousy,adoration and distain all live side by side,just like the sisters do. Good read...well done.
Thought this ended abruptly. Otherwise I loved the multiple person view of the book as well as the well placed quotes. Extremely enjoyable read.