cover image The Sweeney Sisters

The Sweeney Sisters

Lian Dolan. Morrow, $27.99 (288p) ISBN 978-0-06-290904-6

Dolan (Helen of Pasadena) weaves together in this breezy tale the stories of three sisters whose family is disrupted after the death of their famous father. While Liza, the oldest daughter of acclaimed author William Sweeney, meets with potential clients in her Southport, Conn., gallery, she receives word of William’s fatal heart attack after years of heavy drinking. While the middle sister, Maggie, a talented artist also living in western Connecticut, struggles with depression and making ends meet, youngest Tricia has distinguished herself with a successful law career. Brought together in Southport to hear the will, the sisters learn that William had another daughter two years before Liza, and they close ranks against their half-sister, whom they’ve long known as Serena Tucker, who was raised as an only child next door to the Sweeneys. With Serena in Southport for the wake, the sisters feel threatened by any claims or intrusions into their family. Their struggle to believe that William had another child drives them to search for a missing manuscript, which they expect would provide definitive answers to the four women’s questions about their father. While Dolan’s prose lacks verve, the juicy sibling rivalry propels the pace, and the presence of Serena helps the sisters form new bonds among themselves and with the outsider. This endearing story of sisterhood delivers on its promise. Agent: Yfat Reiss Gendell, Foundry Media. (Apr.)