Sisterland

Curtis Sittenfeld, Author
Curtis Sittenfeld. Random, $27 (406p) ISBN 978-1-4000-6831-9
Reviewed on: 04/22/2013
Release date: 06/25/2013
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Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4676-5248-3
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Hardcover - 647 pages - 978-1-4104-6018-9
Paperback - 645 pages - 978-1-59413-711-2
Hardcover - 1 pages - 978-1-4712-4470-4
Hardcover - 400 pages - 978-0-385-61849-6
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Delicious insights into sisterhood and motherhood are peppered throughout Sittenfeld’s novel about identical twins with ESP. The story, though, isn’t as convincing as the twins, who are rendered so vividly that readers would be able to pick them out of a crowd. Kate, a stay-at-home mom in St. Louis, Mo., is embarrassed by her sister Violet, who ekes out a living as a psychic. After a minor earthquake in the area in September 2009, Violet’s guiding spirit warns her that a major quake is imminent. When Kate has a premonition that it will occur on October 16, she allows Violet to share the date with the public if she doesn’t reveal its source. Kate tells the story in chapters that alternate between timelines, one beginning with the September quake and one beginning when the twins are born. As a narrator, Kate is introspective and mostly honest, but the backstory is weighed down with unnecessary details and crucial questions remain unasked. As the clock ticks toward October 16, Violet attracts widespread media attention and Kate pleads with her husband not to leave her and their children at home to attend a conference in Colorado. Sittenfeld (American Wife) offers no fresh perspective on ESP or living with giftedness but delivers a rich and intimate tale of imperfect, well-meaning, ordinary people struggling to define themselves and protect the people they love. Agent: Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, WME Entertainment. (June)
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