Review published on August 18, 2017.
This book was first published in 2003 but there must be sufficient confidence in it to republish in 2017 or maybe it’s a first UK publication? Several years ago I read a Kristin Hannah book. It was a freebie and I had minimal expectations from it but I was pleasantly surprised and enjoyed it far more than I thought I was going to. So, when the benevolent bibliophiles from Nudge Books made this novel available I was happy to renew my acquaintance with Ms Hannah.
I guess this is chick lit, romantic fiction if you’ve a need to pigeon hole it. Neither are genres that have the polarity to draw me towards them. But I do believe that if you are a reader/reviewer you must occasionally step outside your comfort zone to maintain an objectivity and broaden your horizons.
It would be too harsh to say that I didn’t enjoy this book but it won’t reach the higher echelons of my best reads this year list. It’s the work of an experienced writer with a proven track record. A writer who understands her craft, her audience and I salute that.
Given the original publication date, yes, some bits are dated; the reference to Tony Soprano doesn’t have the same impact as it did in 2003. I think you have to bear that in mind as you read. The plot was predictable. Two sisters fall out, follow diametrically opposed lives and circumstances draw them back together. I’ll not be persuaded to give any more away than that. The plot is well thought out and the narrative moves along consistently. The writing flows. The characters are efficiently drawn.
If you’re a sucker for a bittersweet, sentimental, emotional escapist novel you wont be disappointed. It’s schmaltzy, It’s a tearjerker. But it’s meant to be. The kind of book you disappear and leave your life behind for the duration. Life isn’t really like this but who cares? It’s a story, it’s entertainment. and as such it’s superficial but some of these are the reasons people read. If you like a little more depth to your reading then maybe it’s one to miss.
Gill Chedgey 3/4
Between Sisters by Kristin Hannah
Pan 9781509835836 pbk Aug 2017
A Time of Love and Tartan by Alexander McCall Smith
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