Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Weird Sisters by Eleanor Brown

The Weird Sisters* by Eleanor Brown is a story of finding your way, growing up and getting on with it within the fabric of a family.  Rose, Bianca and Cordelia flew the nest years ago, but when their Mother is diagnosed with breast cancer they all return home to realize all the ways in which they never really left in the first place.  These women grabbed me from the prologue and I was drawn right into the center of their lives.  Each of the characters (not the least of which is Barnwell, the town in which the story unfolds) is richly and compassionately drawn.

This is Eleanor Brown.  From what I understand, The Weird Sisters is her first novel, but she's hard at work on another one.  (I found that out by reading her blog)  I'm hardly the first to notice, but this lady has a great voice.  One of my favorite things about the book is her choice to write in the first person plural.  It's a point-of-view that isn't often used and can be difficult to maintain over the course of an entire novel.  Some books that use this POV can be hard to follow (The Fates Will Find Their Way by Hannah Pittard is an example), but in The Weird Sisters, it absolutely works.  In fact, I think it works so well because the story requires it.  Instead of either hearing the voice of only one of the thee sisters or dividing the narrative into three distinct pieces, she merges each of their voices into one and the story just sings with it.

Has anyone else read this one?  I'd love to hear your thoughts.  If you want to find out more about the BlogHer Book Club head on over here and join in the conversation.

* I was compensated for this BlogHer Book Club review but all opinions are my own.


This might be the dumbest comment on the face of your blog, but by first person plural, you mean, like, "We sat at the table."? One of my 35 by 35 goals is to read 12 books of lesbian fiction. I will be as well-read as you in no time! Might I recommend Barb Johnson's More of This World or Maybe Another? It's a collection of short stories that you should read if you love lesbians, New Orleans or working-class people. Or if you love intertwined narratives spanning the course of three decades. .

That is NOT a dumb question. I only know that it's called that bc I looked it up. But yes, you're exactly right. It's 1st person, but the "I" is a "we".

I like the lesbian fiction idea and thanks for the recommendation. I love all three (actually 4) of those things! What other books are on the list? I'd love to know.

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