By Eleanor Brown
Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam
This is a really good book.
I picked it up because I’m in the middle of a give-me-graduate-students-or-give-me-death phase. Going through my list of books that I’ve reviewed over the past six months, I noticed that a large portion have main characters that are either on break from graduate school, just finished graduate school, or have professors for parents.
The great thing about “The Weird Sisters” is that it incorporates an unnatural obsession with Shakespeare into a plot that makes it seem alright for an entire family to communicate through “Macbeth” quotes. I’m not gonna lie–I might take up the Dad’s habit and talk to my future children only in “Prelude” quotes. Actually, that sounds terrible. Scratch that.
One of the unique things about this book (other than the amount of fact-checking that must have gone on in the editor’s office re: Riverside Bard) is the use of first person plural. I don’t have sisters myself, but I appreciate the POV because it provides a degree of psychological realism to Cordy, Bean, and Rose. The sisters return home because their mother has cancer, but each of them has their own private reasons for needing the safety of family.
The plot was great, the quotes a nice touch, but it was Brown’s writing that kept me reading. This is her first novel and I look forward to her next work. This is one of the few books I’ve read lately that I want to pass on to family and friends.
(As a side note, how do ya like the new formatting for Book Review [Insert day]? Much better, right?)