Growing up, the thing I wanted most was a sister. Natural, really, as I mostly grew up without a mother or any close female relatives. I really wanted someone about to talk about girly things with. Boys, clothes, that sort of thing. My single father really wasn't big on 'girl stuff.'
It didn't help that my best friend from when I was pretty little had four sisters. I so desperately wanted just the one, and felt she was being absolutely greedy having four. They fought and bickered constantly of course, but they still had each other's backs. I guess, more than wanting a sister, I just wanted a normal family where something like that is normal. Perhaps in my head, I'm fantasising about sisters like the Brontes, in which we all shared something in common and produced fantastic stories. But I'm sure even those three bickered like anything.
Anyway, I've been reading some fab books lately about sisters and thought I'd talk about them today.
I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith - I came fairly late to reading I Capture the Castle. It was only a few years ago that I read it for the first time. Afterwards I absolutely kicked myself for taking so long with it. I really loved the story of unrequited love and how everything gets so mixed up. But I also really liked the relationship between Cassandra and Rose. I love the quirky setting of the novel and getting into the head of Cassandra. This book is so charming and addictive to read. It's emotional and just plain fab, this one. One I really must reread soon.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - Another absolute classic book about sisters. I know everyone is supposed to hate Laurie towards the end of Little Women when he ends up with horrid Amy, but I always kind of related to him. I could understand how he might want to be part of this family so desperately that he'd end up with even the annoying little sister. I read this book when I was really little and even I wanted to be part of this family.
To act in Jo's plays and hear Beth play the piano. To write for the family paper and give away our food on holidays. I think it'd be fantastic.
The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May and June by Robin Benway - This is the book that really inspired this post. I read this book and thought 'ME, PICK ME' to be the fourth sister in this story. I'd even fit in, as I was born in July, I could totally change my name to July and rock it with these cool sisters. It's a book about sisters who have great dialogue with each other know so many embarassing and awkward details about each other ... but it's also a book about sisters with SUPERPOWERS.
Ahhh, I'm absolutely bursting from the awesome of this book!
A Most Improper Magick by Stephanie Burgis - And for something a little bit different, but no less amazing, we have this first book in the Kat Stephenson series. It's in this first book that I really ADORE the Stephenson sisters the most. They have such great interactions with each other and really support and encourage each other when things go bad but also fight with each other to want and expect more for all of their siblings. I loved that about them. I loved that each of the Stephenson sisters is different in their own special way but they all love and respect each other's differences anyway.
Aww, I'd love to be an honourary Stephenson sister!
Saffy's Angel by Hilary McKay - This is the first book in the series about the Casson family, and the only book that I've read about them. I mean to change that fact very soon. There's something very likeable about the characters in this book, that when I read it, I wanted to join their family immediately. I wanted to feel part of this family and I will definitely be looking out for the rest of the books in the series.
There is, I believe, one boy in this family of sisters, but the dynamic between all of them seems to be really interesting and heart-warming.
The Look by Sophia Bennett - And this is the latest addition to my list of favourite sisters in (mostly) YA literature! Ava and Ted Trout go through so much together throughout this book. And right from the start, I loved the two of them together. You could tell from the first page how much Ted must have adored her big sister to be convinced to go busking in a crowded London street and humiliate herself in such a big way! How does that even happen, I'm still laughing!
And then Ava is diagnosed with cancer and everything falls apart. Ted starts in on modelling as something to do to cheer up her sister from the rough cancer treatments. And they have some really painful and sweet moments together. Specifically a shopping trip that ends up in a hair salon that had me silently crying as I turned the pages. Such a lovely story about sisters.
Do you like reading about sisters? Do you have some favourite literary sisters that I haven't mentioned?
Wonderful post! I love the sisters in Stephanie Burgis's books - they're brilliant. I'd love to be a Stephenson sister.ReplyDelete
I love what you said about being July in Robin Benway's book, too!
I would be incredibly happy to be part of either family :)Delete
Fabulous post! I have yet to read all of these except The Look, which I loved! Bailey and Lennie in The Sky Is everywhere have a wonderful sisterly relationship too.ReplyDelete
I considered Lennie and Bailey, but thought that one sister being dead at the start of the novel made it a little too weird to include :)Delete
I've read the two classics here, but none of the more contemporary books. The four Little Women books and the What Katy Did books which also feature sisters were my comfort reads throughout my childhood that I went back to time and time again.ReplyDelete
I really love those sort of comfort reads! I .. never read further than Little Women actually! And I didn't read WHat Kay Did either, am I missing out?!Delete
I love the Stephenson sisters too - they're awesome. I wish me and my sisters were as cool as they are!ReplyDelete
I think it'd be pretty difficult matching the same level of cool! :)Delete
Do people hate Laury for ending up with Amy? I feel like people tend to hate Amy, full-stop, and as a byproduct of that feel angry with her for marrying Laury when he clearly was meant for Jo. #notoveritReplyDelete
Well it has been a while since I've spoken to anyone at length about Little Women, but conversations used to be along the lines of 'I can't BELIEVE Laurie ends up with AMY' It doesn't seem quite right, does it?Delete
great post! I cant really think of many think of many Ive read recently but I loved The Look and another book I cant really talk about atm yet has a great sister relationship in it and I think you will love it! (sorry for being cryptic!) I really want to read April, may and June and when I do I'll let you know what I think and maybe we can both join in (I'm August so we'd fit! haha!)ReplyDelete
AHH! Cryptic comments like yours are so maddening :)ReplyDelete