JJ's Reviews > The Story Sisters

The Story Sisters by Alice Hoffman
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's review
Apr 20, 12

it was ok
Read in December, 2011

** spoiler alert ** Perhaps a more apt title for this book would be "Four Funerals and a Wedding." It started with such promise: a secret language shared between sisters, a private world, a shared tragedy. For the first half of the book, I was enthralled with the dark and troubled Elv, the oldest daughter, and her self destruction; I was especially captivated by the magical elements of the novel. But then halfway through, the plot degenerated into one tragedy after another; I don't mind bleak and dark novels, but it became overkill (no pun intended). Although there were many wonderful, beautiful passages, too often Hoffman relies on exposition to tell the story; so many times I hoped she'd slow down and let us linger in an actual scene, hear the characters, watch then interact with each other, but those moments were far and few between. By the last third of the novel, I found myself skimming the pages to quickly finish it because I'd grown so tired of it. I know there are many readers out there who loved this book, which is why I chose this Hoffman novel in the first place, but I was very disappointed by the end. One reader compared it to a Danielle Steele novel, and while Hoffman is a much better writer, this plot was too contrived and convenient to be satisfying. If Hoffman had focused on Elv, her sisters, and their complicated ties to the wonderful, secret world of Arnelle instead of trying to juggle multiple story lines, the novel would have been a much richer, worthwhile read.
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03/08 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-7 of 7) (7 new)

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Tricia You should really change your review because the first sentence is a spoiler and anyone looking at this would be waiting for people to die while reading the book and for the wedding.

message 2: by Tawnya (new)

Tawnya I agree please fix your review!!! Don't imply a spoiler!!!!

Michelle21 I agree with your assessment, very fair comments.

Annie This sums up my feelings exactly!

Carolyn Not sure about the ending, foreboding feeling....

message 6: by Holly (new)

Holly Waddell I agree. First Hoffman book I disliked.

Sylvene Loved your review! You eloquently explained exactly what I wish I could have expressed.

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