Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Sisterhood Everlasting

by Ann Brashares

I didn't want to read this book. But I read The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, The Second Summer of the Sisterhood, Girls in Pants: The Third Summer of the Sisterhood, and Forever in Blue: The Fourth Summer of the Sisterhood when I was in high school, so when Sisterhood Everlasting came in at the library, I had no choice.

I forgot how much I love these four girls, these four woman. I devoured this book. That's the thing about the Sisterhood books: I just couldn't consume them fast enough.

Ann Brashares is not a particularly great writer. Her style is difficult for me to sink into. There's not enough flow, no real finesse. For the first hundred pages or so, reading her is like driving a standard when you're accustomed to driving an automatic: every gear shift is jarring and you occasionally stall out just as you're gaining momentum. But I just love these girls. Carmen was never and still is not my favorite. I was disappointed by how much she changed, but was happy to see she found herself again. I used to beg for the story to hurry along so I could read more about Bee's life, although initially in this book I couldn't stand her and her transient ways; luckily she found her much-needed roots. Lena I have always loved and felt a kinship with, and I was thriled with her story. And Tibby, well you'll have to read the book.

I had a cynical moment of "What is this?? P.S. I Love You???" But it worked. Everything about this story worked (though I will admit, the initial mourning period for them all started to feel a little too drawn out). This book, and the previous four books, makes my heart feel full to bursting. I just can't explain it. I encountered the Sisterhood books at the perfect age, and my love for them was rekindled, not instantly, it took a hundred pages or so, but it was revived.

I will say I wasn't happy about how the Sisterhood came to be reunited in this book, but I got over it and everything about how the story developed was beautiful. After finishing the book, all I could do was sit back, smile and sigh.

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