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The Weird Sisters [Paperback]

Eleanor Brown
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Oct. 2 2012

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...


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Review

"Irresistible."
(-The Boston Globe)

"Lovely...This novel should appeal to Shakespeare lovers, bibliophiles, fans of novels in academic settings, and stories of sisterhood. The narration is a creative and original blending of the three 'Weird Sisters' as one."
(-Library Journal)

"Brown writes sweetly of the transition so many adults struggle to make before their parents' eyes, from children to caretakers themselves."
(-The Cleveland Plain Dealer)

About the Author

Eleanor Brown's writing has been published in anthologies, magazines, and journals. She holds an M.A. in Literature and works in education in South Florida but will be living in the Denver area, Colorado at pub date.


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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it! Feb. 14 2011
By Luanne Ollivier #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
Eleanor Brown's debut novel The Weird Sisters is an absolute gem. I was hooked from the first few pages. And as I turned the last, I sat quietly and savoured the story in my mind.

Cordelia (Cordy), Bianca (Bean) and Rosaline (Rose) Andreas are three sisters all named after Shakespearean characters by their father, who is a Bard scholar.

"We wear our names heavily. and though we have tried to escape their influence, they have seeped into us, and we find ourselves living their patterns again and again."

An event in each of their lives has each of them heading home again...

"We came home because we were failures. We wouldn't admit that, of course, not at first, not to ourselves, and certainly not to anyone else. We said we came home because our mother was ill, because we needed a break, a momentary pause before setting off for the Next Big Thing. But the truth was, we had failed and rather than let anyone else know, we crafted careful excuses and alibis and wrapped them around ourselves like a cloak to keep out the cold truth."

Each is surprised and not overly happy to find the others there. "See, we love each other. We just don't happen to like each other very much."

What follows is an absolutely mesmerizing story of the complicated relationships between sisters, between parents and children and the search each sister undertakes to find herself and her place in family and life.

"Who would Bean be if she dropped her beautiful mask? Who would Cordy be if she stepped up to the plate in her own life? Who would Rose be if she weren't the responsible one anymore?"

Brown's characters fairly leap off the page - I could hear their dialogue and picture their actions so clearly.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A quiet, pleasant read March 14 2012
By Samantha TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
The basic premise of the book is not new: three very different sisters (each named after Shakespearean characters) reunite in their family home when their mother gets ill. The academic father leading the family in an odd conversational habit of quoting Shakespeare lends the family an endearing eccentricity that somehow weaves in and out of the story without being too overbearing. The odd three person narrative style is an interesting device and apt in a way I can't explain. However, I hope that it doesn't invite copycats. While the mother's illness was the glue that kept the sisters together in the same house as adults for the length of the tale, the real story revolves around the personal growth of each sister. They are each cursed with a family role that threatens their well-being. Rose (Rosalind) is the uptight, controlled, "good girl" who keeps her eye on the ball without thinking about what she really wants; Bean (Bianca) is the beauty that believes in the glittering promises of haute couture and perfect hair, and life in New York; Cordy (Cordelia) is the aimless free-spirit that doesn't want to grow up, roaming the roads for years without purpose. There is no suspense here, but there is a pleasant desire to keep turning the pages to see what the sisters are doing, where they are going. I enjoyed it very much.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Thr Weird Sisters Oct. 20 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Story was rather predictable. All the characters had some personal issues they were dealing with, and returned to their childhood home in order to do so. For ocus on family and the role our placement in the family and our beliefs we have about ourselves in that context can shape the choices we make in life. An easy read.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Courtesy of Lost for Words March 10 2011
Format:Hardcover
Source: Received from publicist. Many thanks goes to Bronwyn from Penguin Canada for sending me a copy of this book for review. I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review.

My rating: 4/5

The Andreas sisters are all heading back home for one reason or another. The main reason they want you to believe is because their mother is ailing, and they are coming home to care for her. The actual reason for each sister's homecoming is much more secretive. They are all running from a past that has been less than stellar, and are hoping to recharge, while they figure out what to do with their lives. What they don't realize is that every sibling is headed home, so the Andreas household is full again. With a father who speaks in Shakespearian phrases, the whole family must have a healthy relationship with books, and specifically, Shakespeare's works. This coming of age novel is sure to entertain as the sisters realize that this might be the crossroads they are looking for to improve their lives for the better.
Rose, Bianca, and Cordy are all exceptional characters and their nuances made each of them shine in their own way. Though I found myself identifying the most with Rose, as we are both the oldest siblings in our respective families, I couldn't help but identify with Bianca and Cordy as well. They are well-rounded characters, flawed, and most of all, human. With their return to the family home, they learn more about the bond a family has, and how they are there for each other, regardless of past grievances. I especially enjoyed the voice of the novel as it wasn't just one sister talking. It seemed like I was the fourth invisible sister which made it seem like I was privy to information that the other sisters weren't aware of at times.
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