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Welcome to my blog. I often think I was born with a book in my hand. I have always enjoyed reading, but more importantly, talking about books. This blog is partially about reviews, but is really a forum to talk about what I'm reading, and express all of the thoughts and feelings that there simply isn't room for in a professional review. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on your favourite books as you follow my reading journey.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Sisterhood Everlasting: A Bittersweet Reunion

In the fifth book of the Sisterhood series, Ann Brashares fast-forwards 10 years to the summer before the "September" girls' 30th birthdays. Life in many ways has given each of them what they wanted, but the one thing that's missing from their lives is the closeness they shared as teenagers. When Tibby, now living in Australia sends them each a plane ticket to Greece for a reunion, they eagerly accept, anxious to renew their friendships. What they find when they get there changes their lives forever, and helps each of them to find the courage to go after what they want, and not to settle for what they have.

When I discovered that there was going to be another Sisterhood book,  I was surprised and delighted to have the opportunity to revisit these girls who felt so much like my friends, but wondered what could be left to say when the fourth book was such a perfect finale to the series.

One of the things that made this book work so well is that although Ann Brahares picks up 10 years after the end of the last book, she resists the urge to summarize in detail the last 10 years, and offers readers only the important details as they relate to their present. If you had any illusions that they all were living happily ever after, and that all of their dreams had come true, think again. For as much as they've tried to hold onto their closeness, their lives have split and their friendship drifted- even more so when Tibby inexplicably seemed to deliberately dissapear from their lives.

I think the idea of the drifting friendships is what resonated most with me in this novel. Over the years, I've had a few close girlfriends, and as the years go by, it becomes more difficult to keep the friendships going. Life just gets in the way, and as much as you want to hang on to those relationships and return to that period of closeness, sometimes it just doesn't happen. What makes the Sisterhood different is that as different paths as they'd all taken, their friendship was the missing piece in each of their lives. They needed a reason to find their way back to one another, and Tibby's invitation gave them the push they needed.

I also loved the fact that they were questioning their lives and their choices. It's easy to get stuck in a rut where you know you want something more or something different, but you don't know how to get past it because you're following the path you think you're supposed to, and not necessarily the right one.

The novel is emotionally complex, layered and a wonderful reunion with long-lost friends.

2 comments:

cleemckenzie said...

Interesting to have so much time lapse between books. I love that a writer can continue a story in a series without boring the heck out of readers with recaps.

Thanks for the review.

Rachel said...

That in my mind is the sign of a strong writer. I hate long recaps in books. And that she was true to the personalities of the girls.

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