Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Book Review: Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares

Pages: 349
Genre: Adult Fiction
Pub. Date: June 14, 2011
Source: LibraryThing Early Reviewers (Thank you!)
My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars


Goodreads says, "From #1 New York Times bestselling author Ann Brashares comes the welcome return of the characters whose friendship became a touchstone for a generation. Now Tibby, Lena, Carmen, and Bridget have grown up, starting their lives on their own. And though the jeans they shared are long gone, the sisterhood is everlasting.  Despite having jobs and men that they love, each knows that something is missing: the closeness that once sustained them. Carmen is a successful actress in New York, engaged to be married, but misses her friends. Lena finds solace in her art, teaching in Rhode Island, but still thinks of Kostos and the road she didn’t take. Bridget lives with her longtime boyfriend, Eric, in San Francisco, and though a part of her wants to settle down, a bigger part can’t seem to shed her old restlessness.  Then Tibby reaches out to bridge the distance, sending the others plane tickets for a reunion that they all breathlessly await. And indeed, it will change their lives forever—but in ways that none of them could ever have expected."


Readers will be re-introduced to the four girls we have come to love from the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series; however, it's ten years later and the girls are closing in on thirty years old.  Tibby and Brian moved to Australia for his career, which has since taken off tremendously.  Bridget and Eric live in San Francisco; she is still living a very bohemian lifestyle and trying to figure out what to do with her life.  Carmen is a successful actress living in NYC and is engaged to be married.  Lena is teaching art in Rhode Island and of course, Kostos is still in the back of her mind.  Tibby wants to get the girls together again in Greece and she sends them plane tickets to meet her, but that's where the girls' lives are impacted forever.  Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares is a tear-jerking novel about friendship and it deals with life's many unexpected tragedies and inevitable bumps in the road.

To be honest, I had a hard time with Sisterhood Everlasting probably because I have come to love these four girls and essentially grew up with them.  They are nearing the age of thirty, but are just as confused as before, which was disappointing to me.  I give kudos to Tibby for trying to get everyone together again, but why are they so bad at communicating? Ever hear of text messages? Emails? Carmen is pretty much a shadow of her former self (both physically and emotionally) and Lena is super depressing, sad, and lonely.  Bridget annoyed me the most, which is crazy, because I enjoyed her so much before this novel.  She is pretty much acting like she's twenty-two years old and may be one of the most selfish characters I've encountered lately.  I couldn't even understand her; in fact, I pitied her as I had hoped for so much more.  And it gets worse from there.  It was like watching my favorite literary characters fall apart before my eyes.  True, by the end of the novel there's something redeeming to take from it all, but the journey was painful.

The tone of Sisterhood Everlasting was morose and I didn't expect that at first.  I mean the entire book was depressing to the point where I then felt depressed even though I was reading it on a bright summer's day.  I started to get frustrated with the girls and wanted to just scream at them, "Get yourself together!"  The only reason I stuck with this book was for my favorite character, Lena. I just had to know if she was going to end up with Kostos once and for all. I was tired of their games and just wanted them to get together finally!

All in all, Sisterhood Everlasting left me disappointed, but I did appreciate the ending. However, I almost wish Brashares didn't write this book, because it puts a damper on my fond memories of this series.  If you are a true fan of this series, I'm sure you will read Sisterhood Everlasting, but don't say I didn't warn you. Make sure you have a box of tissues and take some time to process the events, because it is completely heartbreaking and gut-wrenching in every way.


*Read an excerpt

14 comments:

  1. No, no, no! Why? That's the only thing I want to say after reading your review. I was sooo happy the girls were back, but if it's to have again and again the same difficulties and a sad book after what was an awesome series... I'm scared. But I will read it nevertheless just to know how it ends :)

    Thanks for your honest review!

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  2. The main surprise of this book was spoiled for me by a Publishers Weekly review so I'm not sure I want to read it. Your review makes me more certain that this is one to skip.

    It is too bad that this book could ruin the happy memories people had of the original series.

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  3. Ingrid- Thanks for stopping by. I hope you enjoy it if you get your hands on a copy.

    Christina- I heard about that review! How horrible! Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Too bad on this one! As much as I love reading book series, sometimes you reach a point where you're happy with the way things are and you don't really need that extra book despite loving the characters and the world. Maybe you can just pretend you didn't read this last book and just re-read the first ones:)

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  5. Oh no! Morose? That's not a good summer emotion!

    Thanks for the great honest review doll.

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  6. Aww, I loved this series. Too bad this one isn't as good as the others. :(

    -Meredith

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  7. I've already heard that this is a sad turn from the girls we knew and loved from years ago. I'm almost unsure of whether or not I will even read this book even though I have a copy of it. Thanks for the honest review. Now I need to go do something happy because just reading your review of how they feel apart is depressing!

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  8. When I first heard that this book was coming out, my first instinct was to wonder why the book was being written. Was it because there was definitely more story that had to be told, or was it because it was a chance to revisit an uber successful series. I may be a little cynical!

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  9. We share so many thoughts on this one! I was very disappointed in this story and had hoped for so much more. Lena is also my favorite character and the only reason I stuck with the book... I definitely had to see how she and Kostos' relationship would play out. I would love a spin-off book featuring just the two of them!

    Bridget also annoyed the tar out of me. She is incredibly self-centered and ridiculous -- childish to a degree I couldn't understand. If I were her BF, I would have run far, far away.

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  10. awww, too bad! i couldn't get into one of her other adult books either.

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  11. I completely agree with you on this review.
    I was so excited to see the book on the shelves when I was out shopping that I didn't even consider the price, just picked it up and bought it. I'd read the four previous books many times while I was at school, and I loved every one of them.
    When I started reading, I thought it would have been more along the lines of "they've fallen apart but were going to get back together." I never imagined in my wildest dreams that it would be such a depressing story.
    Even with the sad moments in the previous books, I was never depressed, only enlightened in how the girls dealt with their issues.
    The only word I could put to it was "depressing".
    I agree completely about Bridget. She aggravated me so much, she was absolutely terrible to Eric. He didn't deserve that one bit, and she knew it. There was no need for her actions.
    In a way, I wished that Lena had gotten over Kostos and had moved on.
    Honestly, my favourite character in the book was Carmen. Even in her faults throughout the book, she was still the most level-headed of them all. She wasn't hanging on to lost loves, and I don't believe she was truly running away from anything as such. She'd become successful, but was being led by a ridiculous fiance. But it's a relatable story. And Carmen still had the same passion she had for the sisterhood after all those years.
    I enjoyed the book, yes, but I was still disappointed. In a way, I also wish Ann hadn't written this book.

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  12. I'm about a 1/4 through the book, and I have to read it in small parts. I took this book with me on vacation to Crete Greece, and Santorini thinking it would be the perfect feel good book to read on the beach. I haven't finished it, it's too dark. This is the first one of the series I've read, but! I've seen the movies based on the other books. Kind of bummed out that this one was so intensely sad and morose. Wish I would have read your feedback prior to buying it. Maybe I'll try reading the first ones.

    Thanks for the review.

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  13. I'm about a 1/4 through the book, and I have to read it in small parts. I took this book with me on vacation to Crete Greece, and Santorini thinking it would be the perfect feel good book to read on the beach. I haven't finished it, it's too dark. This is the first one of the series I've read, but! I've seen the movies based on the other books. Kind of bummed out that this one was so intensely sad and morose. Wish I would have read your feedback prior to buying it. Maybe I'll try reading the first ones.

    Thanks for the review.

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  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

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