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Appearances

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  43 ratings  ·  16 reviews
Samantha―the fashionable wife of a successful businessman and doting mother of one―struggles to negotiate the spheres of intimacy between her husband and her family of origin. Samantha loves her husband, Richard, and she loves her sister, Elizabeth. But the two of them can barely exist in the same room, which has caused the entire family years of emotional distress. Yet it ...more
Paperback, 328 pages
Published April 9th 2019 by She Writes Press
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3.95  · 
Rating details
 ·  43 ratings  ·  16 reviews


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Nikki (Saturday Nite Reader)
3.5 stars rounded up

Samantha is married to a successful Boston businessman, Richard. Her sister, Elizabeth, is married to a successful real estate developer, Jake. Samantha and Elizabeth are attached at the hip (figuratively speaking). Since Jake, Samantha and Elizabeth grew up together, they are very close. Richard feels like an outsider and disengages from Samantha’s family: resulting in a long winded, passive aggressive turned direct family feud. They would probably make an interesting storyl
...more
Donna Hines
May 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Conflicting loyalties, family torn, a marriage irretrievably broken, a sister's death, a families pain on full display, and the children are left somewhere in the middle of it all.
Wow! This is a whole chock full of nuts but also pain as a young woman in her prime loses her life to cancer while the family breaks apart but can they mend their broken hearts and find forgiveness?
Ultimately that's what lies at the end of this emotionally moving piece by Sondra Helene. The fact that we all face battle
...more
Alix
Apr 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Thank you to BookSparks for sending me a copy!

In all honesty, I was bored with this story till about chapter 15. By that point, I WAS SUCKED IN!

From the synopsis alone, I knew it was going to be sad. After really getting invested in the characters and complicated relationships it’s both sad, real and endearing.

When I just started reading this, my feelings for the husband, Richard, was anger and confusion. As the book progressed, I understood why and I, along with Samantha discovered that their
...more
BookTrib.com
Initially, the trappings of her opulent lifestyle smother Samantha Freeman, but no one sees her angst. Even the most intimate characters in Sondra Helene’s debut novel reveal only pieces of themselves to one another in this deeply personal story. The title of her novel, Appearances (She Writes Press), epitomizes an overriding theme personified through the story of two sisters and their families as they deal with intense emotions hidden beneath the surface of their seemingly perfect lives.

Samanth
...more
abdulia ortiz-perez
I received this for honest review.

I'm ambassador this year for Spring 🌻
I received my first #swiperightonreading
I'm so excited to be part of @booksparks for spring reading.
#booksharks

I ready don't now what to say about this but it was hard for me to get into it. This really wasn't for al all.
Giving it 3.5 stars ⭐⭐⭐.🌠
If this is for you them I recommend it for you!
Jeanne Blasberg
Apr 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This a realistic portrayal of conflicting loyalties. When women play so many roles and aim to please - not easy. I loved this novel for tackling modern challenges so well, not to mention grief. It’s the type of book that keeps you turning the page to see how Samantha copes with something not far flung, but all too familiar.
Meaghan
Apr 14, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2019, arc, booksparks
Samantha is married to a successful businessman named Richard and is extremely close with her family. Especially her sister, Elizabeth, and her sister's husband, Jake, who is a real estate developer. While getting his feet off the ground Jake calls in a few favors to Richard which end up going wrong and causes tension between the two and by extension, Elizabeth. Richard begins to feel like an outsider in Samantha's family.

But when Elizabeth is diagnosed with lung cancer Samantha finds herself ca
...more
Candy Altman
Apr 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Very strong character development and realistic dialogue make this a very good read. I became invested in the present and future of each person in the book. Family drama, love, loss, redemption, and a strong central character. This book has all of that and has you rooting for the protagonist throughout. Great first novel by Sondra Helene.
Daniela Sciortino Ariano
Jun 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Such a great story that explores family & marriage dynamic. It takes a lot for a book to bring me to tears, but this story did so effortlessly.
Mildred Bromberg
Jun 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Deborah Burns
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Appearances appeared and I could not put it down. Layered with the complexities of human relationships, this is a delicate book, a fine read. Appearances takes you by the hand and pulls you into the dynamic of an intimate family circle. You won't want it to end.
Victoria Wood
May 29, 2019 rated it liked it
APPEARANCES is a story about two sisters, Samantha and Elizabeth who are thick as thieves. They both marry, but Samantha’s husband can’t stand Elizabeth and he only tolerates the rest of their family – a perfect recipe for a whole bunch of family drama.

Elizabeth is diagnosed with stage 4 cancer, and her sister puts her tumultuous relationship on pauses to care for her sister. The novel then follows Samantha’s experience caring for her sister and supporting the family.

Expect a lot of wealth, and
...more
Paige
Jun 13, 2019 rated it really liked it

5 Reasons to Read Appearances
• This blend of light women’s fiction and family drama is a perfect read for someone looking for a palette cleanser.
• Reads like a memoir, but is actually fiction. The fun fact that I later learned is that the characters are based on real people. Helene did a nice job of developing the motivations and plot- I truly thought this was a true story for the majority of the novel!
• Quick read- perfect for a weekend trip or a day by the beach. The character relationsh
...more
Ruth Steinberg
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Appearances gripped me right from the beginning. I loved the closeness of the two sisters Samantha and Elizabeth. I could feel the heartbreak of the whole family when Elizabeth was diagnosed with cancer. The story is poignant about love and loss and the importance of family. The writing is vivid and Sondra Helene takes the reader as if we are experiencing things ourselves. I highly recommend Appearances.
Susan
Jul 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I could not put this book down. I was a little disappointed with the ending, but I won’t spoil it. I loved the Boston setting.
Erica
Apr 12, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is full of complicated family relationships which felt very realistic. I cared very much about the sisters’ relationship and how certain health issues would ripple through the family dynamic. Overall, it kept my attention but there were certain elements of the writing that I didn’t particularly love.

Thanks to @BookSparks for my review copy!
Emily Lit
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May 12, 2019
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Pamela Mignona
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May 21, 2019
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