Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Orphan Sister” as Want to Read:
The Orphan Sister
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Orphan Sister

3.11  ·  Rating Details ·  1,090 Ratings  ·  193 Reviews
Clementine Lord is not an orphan. She just feels like one sometimes. One of triplets, a quirk of nature left her the odd one out. Odette and Olivia are identical; Clementine is a singleton. Biologically speaking, she came from her own egg. Practically speaking, she never quite left it. Then Clementine’s father—a pediatric neurologist who is an expert on children’s brains, ...more
ebook, 304 pages
Published July 5th 2011 by Gallery Books (first published January 1st 2011)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Barbara
Sep 23, 2011 Barbara rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Am I the only one that thought that this book was boring? It was a real struggle to get through it. If there was a plot line, it was a flimsy one. This is one book that won't grab you after the first few pages. It didn't grab me after 280 pages. The odd triplet makes herself the victim and just seems to me to be self centered. She comes across as an angry woman for no reason whatsoever. If there was a half star rating I would have given that for this book. The author skips from the present to th ...more
Nancy
Jun 26, 2011 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My take: The story is an interesting one because it is ultimately about the internal struggle of wanting to belong yet fighting for individuation. I wasn't as much interested in the family conflict as the family dynamics and the way Clementine goes about looking for her other half, as Odette and Olivia have one another.

The story is based upon a set of triplets, now 29 years old. Olivia and Odette are identifical twins while Clementine's egg just happened to fall down the fallopian tube the same
...more
Vivian
Jul 06, 2011 Vivian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think that there are periods in our lives when we all may feel out of step with our siblings and/or family. We simply feel as if we don't fit in for some reason. This appears to be the underlying theme of The Orphan Sister by Gwendolen Gross.

Clementine Lord feels out-of-step with her sisters, even though she is a triplet. It doesn't help that they are identical twins and she is simply the "sister." Or at least that how it feels to her at times. Clem's sisters are high achievers and have beaut
...more
Tracy
Aug 28, 2012 Tracy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Orphan Sister is supposed to be a book about a set of triplets, Clementine, Odette, and Olivia. Odette and Olivia are identical with Clementine being the lone sister out. Their father is a pediatric neurologist who one day goes missing. One of the triplets knows about her father's secrets but won't tell the other two, and Clementine makes it her mission to discover it.

The characters were very one dimensional. There was absolutely no depth to the characters. The twist in plots were not very t
...more
Emily Park
Sep 22, 2011 Emily Park rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
http://em-and-emm.blogspot.com/2011/0...

Every now and then, you read a book where nothing much really happens, but the book is still completely engrossing and enjoyable to read. This is one of those books. Clementine Lord is one daughter in a set of triplets. Through a strange quirk, her two sisters are identical, while Clementine is fraternal. Although she shares a strong bond with her sisters Olivia and Odette, Clementine has always felt like something of an outsider. The three daughters grew
...more
Alex
At First Sight: Clementine Lord has always felt a little like the odd one out in her family. She's one of a set of triplets, only that her other two sisters are identical while she's only a fraternal twin; and though she has a strong connection to her sisters Odette and Olivia, that connection is not as strong as the one they have with each other.

Odette and Olivia both followed in their father's footsteps and became doctors - and winners of the parental approval - while Clementine is just now t
...more
Roxanne
I had a difficult time with the beginning of this book. At page 60 I put the book down and didn't think I would bother to finish it. I decided to give it another shot, and by the middle of the book when I finally got to find out a little more about what daddy's issue was, I could pay more attention to the character development and storyline. I was disappointed with both by the end of the book.

I didn't care for Clem or her sisters Odette and Olivia. As a matter of fact, I didn't care for their mo
...more
Charlotte
Jul 17, 2011 Charlotte rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Orphan Sister is a fantastic novel about family dynamics. A family is gripped in the middle of a family crisis and we get to see it all unfold. I really liked Clementine and I hated to see how hurt she was by her father. Triplets are unique enough that the book could have only dealt with their relationship and it would have been a good book to read. Throw in the unusual circumstances their father has thrown them into and you have the makings of a fantastic novel.

http://charlotteswebofbooks.b
...more
Diana
May 31, 2012 Diana rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a long and tedious read about a set of triplets and their spoiled existence. I finished the book waiting for something to happen... Something exciting or dramatic but nothing happened. It's just their everyday lives and their whiny perspective of their parents. It's not horrible, but it is a little boring.
Margaret
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Lauren
Feb 24, 2014 Lauren rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2014-reads
Clementine Lord is an individual in a set of triplets. Her two sisters, Odette and Olivia, are identical twins, and as a fraternal third, Clementine feels distanced, despite the triplet telepathy they all seem to possess. Her father, a narcissistic surgeon who spends more time traveling than with his own family, always seems to favor Olivia and Odette, who inherited his gift for medicine and went to Ivy League schools, becoming doctors in their own right. The twins find their future husbands at ...more
Laura Kay Bolin
Aug 02, 2011 Laura Kay Bolin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finding the path to one’s own identity is a story in and of itself, but to be one of three brings about a number of additional complexities. Gwendolen Gross writes a multifaceted story of Clementine Lords’ journey in finding her own path. Clementine is a singleton who was born a triplet with identical twin sister’s Odette and Olivia. She is one with them and yet she is different and not the same as them. She is the odd sister out.

When Clementine’s father goes missing she is pressed to deal with
...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Going into this, I didn't really have any expectations, but was hesitantly hopeful it might be interesting. I really didn't know anything about it, except that the triplet thing. I am happy to report that The Orphan Sister was about so much more than that. This story grabbed me from page one and I devoured it whole, the funny, the sweet, the romantic, the depressing and even the scenes about babies (which for me is saying something).

Clem has such a real voice that you really feel like you're get
...more
Mary (BookHounds)
Triplets Odette, Olivia and Clementine are at major crossroads in their lives when their father abandons them and their mother. Odette and Olivia are identical twins and Clementine seems to be just another sister except that she was born at the same time. Odette and Olivia, both doctors like their pediatric neurosurgeon father are also pregnant at the same time while Clementine is struggling to get in to veterinarian school when she moves back home while waiting for her acceptance letter. One da ...more
Mmtimes4
Oct 03, 2011 Mmtimes4 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Clementine Lord is not an orphan. She just feels like one sometimes. One of triplets, a quirk of nature left her the odd one out. Odette and Olivia are identical; Clementine is a singleton. Biologically speaking, she came from her own egg. Practically speaking, she never quite left it. Then Clementine’s father—a pediatric neurologist who is an expert on children’s brains,
...moreClementine Lord is not an orphan. She just feels like one sometimes. One of triplets, a quirk of nature left her the o
...more
Kristine
The Orphan Sister by Gwendolen Cross, a Goodreads First Read free giveaway book won on June 28th, received on July 13th, and begun on July 20th. Odd one out sibling rivalry. Okie dokie.

Somehow, the tone of the first-person narration seems alot how someone with OCD would speak - doublebacking, explaining, excusing, compartmentalized, and having a reason for every tic. And, being this character comes from an affluent family, I likened it to Howard Hughes, except a girl with her first and foremost
...more
Brenda
Aug 05, 2011 Brenda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Although I found Gwendolen Gross’ The Orphan Sister to be an easy read, I felt even more of an outsider than its central character, a triplet who is not identical to her sisters—and, therefore, feels less connected, despite her ability to communicate with the others telepathically.

Perhaps, my background has not prepared me to appreciate the familial dissent caused by the protagonist’s decision to become a veterinarian instead of a pediatrician. So what if she chooses Oberlin over MIT, Harvard,
...more
Kate Puleo Unger
Thankfully this was a quick, easy read because I almost gave up on it. This book was just so slow. It was all character development and backstory and not much plot. It seemed like every time things got going in the present, the chapter would end and the next chapter would jump back to the past. Ugh.

I was drawn to the twin/triplet aspect of this book, but even that character element wasn't all that satisfying. Clementine isn't exactly the odd one out so much as she isolates herself from people. I
...more
drey
Sep 15, 2011 drey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gwendolen Gross' The Orphan Sister tells the story of one of a triplet set who's not like the other two, and how that affects their relationship and interactions--with each other, with their family, friends, with strangers. It is also the story of a family that falls apart when the father disappears--telling only one child where he went--and of secrets that can tear your life apart if you let it. It is a story of grief and yearning and loss when a loved one dies young. And last but not least, it ...more
Laura
Apr 30, 2012 Laura rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I just couldn't get through this - 2/3 of the way through and all I can think of is the better books I have in my queue.

Basically, the characters are terrible - one dimensional, tough to relate to, and not very interesting. The big family secret, when you find out what caused it, really isn't that crazy and you almost feel some sympathy for the father. Clem's romantic history isn't all that terrible, and I didn't feel the relationship with Eli was some kind of radical shift. And the whole triple
...more
Cj
Jun 29, 2013 Cj rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Hmmm, my reaction to this book was 'a bit underwhelmed'. I will say that this was not a book for me.

I found Clementine to be a twenty-something young woman still dealing with teen angst. She wanted attention, but she didn't want it; she wanted connection but she didn't want it. Her relationship, or rather how she felt about it, with her parents was all over the map. She was mad at, and blamed her father for his past, when he thought it had been resolved by His parents... The relationship she ha
...more
Cheryl
Jul 04, 2011 Cheryl rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Clementine and her two sisters, Odette and Olivia could not be more different. While the three of them are triplets, only Odette and Olivia really share the bond that twins or triplets share. Maybe this is why Clementine was not named with an “O” name. Clem is her own person. While, she likes it take way, you can tell that she also misses the fact that she is not as close as Odette and Olivia. Clem and her sisters are about to being closer, when their father leaves them.

I thought this book soun
...more
Rose Ann
Throughout the book I could feel Clementine's frustration...wanting that extra connection/closeness with her sisters, but also wanting to be individual.
She had alot to let go of (love, heartbreak, betrayal), and also so much to hold on to also.

The story would switch back and forth w/Clem's past....the transition to her past and present was a bit confusing at times....didn't flow well.

There were things towards the end of the book that stood out to me, and I made note of.....may be spoilers from
...more
Chamar
Aug 05, 2011 Chamar rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an intricate story of a triplet's struggle to find her own way. Every sibling struggles to belong to yet be independent from their family, but Clementine Lord's feelings of being left out and alternately smothered by her status as the fraternal sister to the two identical sisters that makes up the triplet set. Throw in the tragic and surprising death of her college sweetheart - while they're still in college, and Clementine struggles greatly with her relationship with her sisters, paren ...more
Amy's Book Reviews
4 of 5 stars


Clementine Lord is not an orphan. She is, however, the fraternal triplet to identicals Olivia and Odette. She alternately longs for and shuns the closeness of O&O, who followed their father to Harvard and became doctors like him, in Siamese twin offices as an OB and a pediatrician. And they're both pregnant. Clem lives in her parents' guest house, is finishing grad school and thinks about becoming a veterinarian. When their father goes missing, Clem wants answers.
Narrator Clemen
...more
Trisha
Jul 15, 2011 Trisha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A few words to describe The Orphan Sister: deep, disjointed, real-seeming, tense, lovely.

Gwendolen Gross uses a disjointed style to show the lives of Clementine and her sisters. The book jumps around in time. One paragraph could be about the present and their missing father. The next could be a flashback to Clem's days in the elementary school play. The next, about her relationship with Cameron in college. Although that disjointed style would normally make a book hard to read, it seemed to work
...more
Yo Bess
Feb 26, 2013 Yo Bess rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I struggled to get thru this book and it was a total disappointment! The initial reviews led me to believe that it would be an interesting read. My Book Club members voted for this selection so this is the only reason I completed it. I assumed when the absent Father walked into the hospital room before his daughter delivered her baby I knew for sure then the book would become more interesting. Even then the author continued with the unnecessary flashbacks, and at some points I got lost trying to ...more
Elise Hamilton
This 3-star rating doesn't really do the book justice, since it's well written and the prose is quite good. But I was disappointed that the book didn't live up to it's potential; that's really what caused the 3 rating. I kept asking myself if it was "chick lit". (And for all chick lit fans out there, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that genre. There are many CL books that are very good.) The narrator, Clementine, definitely needs and wants her father's approval. Though, again, that's a lit ...more
Vilmarys
Aug 05, 2011 Vilmarys rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
I did like this book however I could only give it 3 stars because I couldn't get used to the writing style. The author jumped back and forth between the past and present very frequently. There was no warning that it was going to happen. But other than that I liked it. I liked Clementine. Found myself laughing at her optimism. For example, "I was a college graduate, and I had a great job in a bookstore, and the weather was glorious and my apartment had a view of the bay, if you stood on a step st ...more
Autumn
Jun 30, 2011 Autumn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. The beginning was kind of slow and I was starting to wonder if I was going to make it through the book or not. By time I got to the middle, the story was picking up and I was getting into the characters. When the end came around, I was boohooing and I was really sad that the book was finished.

I have twin daughters and I was really fascinated by triplet aspect of this book. Mine are only 7, so I don't think they really understood the que
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Madison Mega-Mara...: The Orphan Sister 1 1 Aug 27, 2012 05:03AM  
  • Another Bad-Dog Book: Essays on Life, Love, and Neurotic Human Behavior
  • Things We Didn't Say
  • The Art of Saying Goodbye
  • Damage Control
  • Pinch Me
  • God Wins: Heaven, Hell, and Why the Good News Is Better Than Love Wins
  • The Winters in Bloom
  • Amaryllis in Blueberry
  • The Mistress's Revenge
  • Forex Frontiers "The Essentials of Currency Trading"
  • Emotionally Wounded Spiritually Strong: Victim No More-Seven Healing Prescriptions
  • Snowflakes and Stetsons
  • Bittersweet (Bittersweet #1)
  • The McCloud Home for Wayward Girls
  • Little Black Dress
  • Wherever Grace Is Needed
  • The Killing Song
  • Barefoot in November
507640
Dubbed the reigning queen of women's adventure fiction by Joanna Smith Rakoff in Book Magazine, Gwendolen Gross grew up in Newton, Massachusetts. She graduated from Oberlin College, where she studied science writing and voice performance. She spent a semester in Australia with a field studies program, studying spectacled fruit bats in the rainforest remnants of Northern Queensland.

After college sh
...more
More about Gwendolen Gross...

Share This Book