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

The Weird Sisters

3.36  ·  Rating details ·  44,079 ratings  ·  6,396 reviews
There is no problem that a library card can't solve.

The Andreas family is one of readers. Their father, a renowned Shakespeare professor who speaks almost entirely in verse, has named his three daughters after famous Shakespearean women. When the sisters return to their childhood home, ostensibly to care for their ailing mother, but really to lick their wounds and bury
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published January 20th 2011 by Amy Einhorn Books/Putnam (first published January 1st 2011)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Weird Sisters, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Mary Ann Don't give up! It gets better. You're right, they characters are not all that likable, but they do "grow up". I ended up liking the book.…moreDon't give up! It gets better. You're right, they characters are not all that likable, but they do "grow up". I ended up liking the book.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.36  · 
Rating details
 ·  44,079 ratings  ·  6,396 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Weird Sisters
Stephanie *Eff your feelings*
Is every book set in Ohio?

This is the second book in a row that I have read set here in Ohio. The first one,Knockemstiff, was most excellent; Weird Sisters I’m sorry to say was shit. This book was just, beyond words, sucky. Gack! I even finished it because I wasn’t going to let it beat me.

Here’s the clever premise. Three sisters by the names of Bianca, Cordelia , and Rose (short for Roselyn? I just don’t care) are born to a family who can’t stop reading…..ever. They are born to parents whose nam
Jan 18, 2011 marked it as gave-up
I read about 50 pages of this. I found the unknown narrator irritating-at first I thought I might have missed who was doing the narrating and kept going back to see, but then I realized the book was supposed to be like that, that there was no one narrator; I may be old-fashioned but I like knowing who's doing the narrating in a book. I suppose this can be considered an antinovel since I haven't seen this kind of narration before. I just can't stand it. And, while Shakespeare was a brilliant writ ...more
Apr 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely pitch perfect. (I would give this ten out of five stars if I could.)

This is the first book I have read that uses a first-person-plural narrative style, and it was so completely appropriate; you get the sense that this book came together with these three sisters sitting around a Pensieve after the events of this book have transpired, looking at them playing out again, and dictating the story to the author, who has set up shop with a typewriter in the adjacent corner of the room.

May 24, 2012 rated it did not like it
I can't even finish this piece of crap book; it's so juvenile it's insulting. Clearly Eleanor Brown just took some extended writing class and thinks she's an author because she's using every cliche and plot technique to prolong a story that's just not interesting. Here are the reasons I know she's an amateur writer: 1) She includes insignificant details that are supposed to make her characters round but really have nothing at all to do with the characters - why is it important to talk about some ...more
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

“Sisters keep secrets. Because sisters’ secrets are swords.”

This space could probably remain blank and a whole ton of you would go buy The Weird Sisters for this little blurb alone . . .

There is no problem that a library card can't solve.

I should probably leave it at that because I have no clue what to say about this book. Here, allow me to distract you with some giffery . . . .

Palm Springs commercial photography

Ahhhh, that’s better. All glory and honor t
Jann Barber
Jan 03, 2012 rated it liked it
I was struck by a few sentences spoken by the character of Father Aidan on page 305 of my copy of this book: "There are times in our lives when we have to realize our past is precisely what it is, and we cannot change it. But we can change the story we tell ourselves about it, and by doing that, we can change the future."

I liked the book and the interactions between the sisters/the sisters and their parents/the sisters and non-family members. It did seem as if some of the character traits or sce
May 19, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobooks, chicklit
We were three sisters who wanted to write a story that was different from any other. Or even if it was a cliché, at least we could make it seem different by using the first-person plural narrative. And by adding a gimmick – a father who’s a professor of Shakespeare, so that Shakespearean quotations could be thrown in at convenient times to make the reader feel literary and make us seem different.

Rose, the oldest, insisted that she be the overfunctioning sister. “All sister duos in these books mu
Mar 30, 2011 rated it did not like it
This book sucked. It's about 3 sisters who all end up moving back home to "help" their mother while she's battling breast cancer. But they all moved back home at the same time because (as they will readily admit) they are failures. How nice for their mother. The oldest, Rose, is an obnoxious know-it-all who's convinced no one can do anything without her. Everyone else is a total screw up and she (and she alone) will save the day. She's ruining her life in the process but she likes being a martyr ...more
Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
Three sisters, three different outlooks on life, three different opinions about working, three different attitudes concerning just about everything, but they all had the same reason for coming home.....their mother needed help because of her breast cancer.

Rose was the practical, organized sister, Bean was the attorney turned thief, and Cordy was still the spoiled child she always was. They all had some secret or concern as they returned to their childhood home.

Their childhood home was one of l
Feb 10, 2011 rated it really liked it
When their mother is diagnosed with cancer, Bianca and Cordelia find themselves returning home to join their third sister, Rose, who still lives in their hometown. Bean and Cordy aren't returning to support their mother as much as they are impelled by their own messy life situations: Bianca because she has been fired for stealing from her job, and Cordelia because after years of living irresponsibly on the road, she has discovered that she is pregnant. Stalwart Rose has finally glimpsed a chance ...more
Mar 18, 2011 rated it did not like it
This book started out great! I loved the quoting Shakespeare and the story itself told by all three sisters. After a while I found the writing annoying. It wasn't always easy to understand what Brown was trying to say. I persevered and by the middle I just wanted to know what happened. I was relieved when I finally finished! I felt that this was basically a very juvenile story and I most certainly would not recommend it to anyone. By the way, this is the first time I am taking the time to review ...more
Nov 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book is nothing like the kind of thing I choose to read. It is the kind of thing found in the "New fiction" section at Barnes and Noble, or "Literature" in other places. I'm a genre fiction sort of girl, and so this isn't something I'd have ever read under normal conditions.

But, when the Vice President comes flying down the hall to give you her copy because she's sure you'd enjoy it...well.... And to be fair, we did talk about it when we were doing the Walk for the Cure in October, and our
Judith Hannan
Nov 19, 2012 rated it it was ok
When I was in my 20s, for every three "literary" works I read, I would read one mystery and one romance novel, the latter for pure escapsism. When I began The Weird Sisters, I was hopeful that it could an ideal combination of fine writing but a fun/easier read. Indeed, Eleanor Brown has beautiful phrases and expressions sprinkled generously througout this book. Unfortunately, it just isn't enough to make The Weird Sisters work for me. In talking about a character's pre-determined fate vs what c ...more
Jun 03, 2011 rated it did not like it
Up front, I have to say that when I discovered this novel, I went into it with the truest of intentions. I mean, I come from a family with three sisters--I'm the youngest and I know a little bit about Shakespeare--happen to love Othello and The Taming of the Shrew.

But this story just seemed to go into places that I couldn't get into and didn't much care for.

Only real quick, this wouldn't be a 'classic' Novelwit2000 review, if I didn't bring up the thing with the names.

I thought it was a novel
Mar 31, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2011
I would have abandoned this book if I hadn't been traveling this week. Much like The Cookbook Collector, it's the story of upper-middle-class sisters testing the boundaries and distinctions between one another, only here there is an additional veneer of literary vanity in the form of copious quotations from Shakespeare. In this book, you see, the sisters' father is a professor specializing in the Bard, so they all quote him as the occasion rises. It's supposed to be clever, but I came away with ...more
My TBR pile has grown ridiculously huge of late (my house is hoarding half my public library's precious cargo). Despite this ever-increasing mountain of unread promises, my reading pace has proportionately slowed. At a time when I should be blazing through the pages of every book I pick up, I find myself smelling the proverbial roses. The faster I burn through a book, the more quickly I am to forget it anyway, even the real gems. Plus, life just gets in the way sometimes and it's been doing a da ...more
Layla Strohl
Sep 15, 2012 rated it liked it
Poor Eleanor Brown. I think from reading other reviews she unfairly gets a bad rap. Yes it's true this book is is not high class literature but it is an interesting take on birth order roles and interactions of siblings. It's also true that the characters often are self absorbed malcontents (as one good read reviewer put it) but their struggles, while they may seem superficial to some, feel genuine and their pain real.

Also I think the idea of three sibling coming home to care for their ailing m
Jan 17, 2012 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Chicks, Goodwill, Bargain book bins.
Recommended to Ryn by: A calendar
Oh book how I hated thee. Let me count the ways. One detail that bothered me greatly was that these girls were constantly reading, but never does the author tell us what they are reading. I like books about books about books. A book about books this was not.

Then there was the disappointing fact that these sisters were in no way weird. They WERE banal, cliche, boring, trite, annoying, and unrealistic. First we have Rose the stuffy, plain, type-A eldest sister who just needs to learn to give up h
Feb 03, 2012 rated it really liked it
A feel-good book, something that will burn your heart with affection to the characters, and at the end will warm your heart with its story.

The story is simple - three sisters who were reunited in their home town to aid their ailing mother. There's nothing fancy about the plot, except when you started to read it. What I love about the book is how expected each moment can be, yet there is a dash of twist in each way the story was told. Each sisters has their own story, which they tried to ran away
Tiffany PSquared
“Sisters keep secrets. Because sisters' secrets are swords.”

The small college town of Barnwell, OH welcomes back three of its native daughters whose lives are all in varying degrees of utter catastrophe. Rose, who never truly left home, but is feeling the pressure of a fiancé whose big dreams lie overseas. Bean, whose New York aspirations have ultimately grown into something nefarious and criminal. And Cordy, the youngest, whose Bohemian lifestyle has finally managed to catch up to her in one b
Mar 27, 2011 rated it it was amazing
What bibliophile could resist The Weird Sisters, a story about three book-loving but otherwise very different sisters all named for characters from Shakespeare? I’ve succumbed to its charms twice, reading the book in 2011 and listening to the audio version in 2014.

My review from 2011:

I loved this satisfying, hopeful, intelligent book from start to finish. It’s a sort of belated coming of age story about three twentysomething, verging on thirtysomething, sisters who grew up in the small college t
Mar 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Another unexpected read that I opened by chance and it hooked me, this tale of the three sisters from a reasonably normal small college town family who take quite different life paths only to reunite when thei mother's illness and some major happenings in their life (pregnancy, marriage but also messed up career and heartbreak) brings them back to their home.

A fast and engaging read with well drawn characters
Eleanor Brown (the author of this book) spoke at our Staff Day this year. Turns out, she's a board member for our library district. I had no idea. I think I only know 2 of the members on the board since I stopped attending the meetings a few years back. So much has changed.
At any rate, Brown was delightful and hilarious as our keynote speaker and I decided we need to be BFFs. But I don't think that's going to happen so, instead, I read this, her first book and now we can't be BFFs because I'm no
Aug 30, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: 2013-reads
Three women who have sort of failed at life show back up on their parents’ doorstep after finding out their mother has cancer. Eldest sister, Roselyn, is a control freak who uses her mother’s illness as an excuse to stay in her hometown while her fiance teaches in Oxford for a year. Middle sister, Bianca, ditched her small town to live the big city life in New York, embezzled lots of money from her company for designer clothing, skipped out on rent, and charged up her credit cards. Her return to ...more
Clif Hostetler
Jan 04, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel
This is the story of three sisters who have returned to their Ohio home town to help care for their mother who's receiving treatment for breast cancer. But it turns out that their simultaneous return home is more coincidental than prompted by desire to nurse their mother. All three are escaping their failures in life, all of which are different. The sisters themselves are all very much different from each other, the oldest a controlling homebody, the middle one a promiscuous spendthrift, and the ...more
Aug 23, 2011 rated it it was ok
I really wanted to like this book, but when I found myself putting it down time after time I knew I was kidding myself. First, the sisters were not really weird. They were immature, self-centered, mean, shallow and undeserving. Having five sisters of my own, I really did not identify with any of the characters or relationships in the book. Eventually each sister just got on my nerves. I could see the ending from a mile away. The book was packed with gimmicks.

Relationships between sisters can be
Girls Gone Reading
Mar 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I read that Eleanor Brown simply wanted to write a book about families. She claimed that this caused her to incorporate Shakespeare and use the plural narrator. When I read her post on The Debutante Ball, Eleanor Brown claimed that her writing comes “haphazardly”. I, for one, don’t buy it-or if that is true I want some of it!

Because the truth is, The Weird Sisters is one of the most unique and most real books I have read lately. Unique and real don’t usually go hand-in-hand, but Brown managed it
Aug 29, 2020 rated it liked it
"We all have stories we tell ourselves." ...more
Dec 26, 2011 rated it did not like it
Predictable plot and predictable characters. Three sisters sterotyped by birth order - the bossy eldest sister, the slutty, attention seeking middle sister and the irresponsible youngest. All returning to live at home using the excuse to care for their mother who has breast cancer. But these three self centered 30 somethings are really just trying to avoid making adult decisions or facing the consequences of their poor decision making. The eldest is so terrifed of change that she is using her mo ...more
Feb 06, 2011 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Outside World
  • Vigilante (Shane Scully, #11)
  • Simplify Your Space: Create Order and Reduce Stress
  • Wiccan Kitchen: A Guide to Magical Cooking & Recipes
  • Mama Moon's Book of Magic: A Compendium of Rituals, Spells & Potions for the Modern World
  • Wiccapedia Journal: A Book of Shadows
  • The Complete Book of Dreams
  • The Crystal Witch: The Magickal Way to Calm and Heal the Body, Mind, and Spirit
  • New Moon Astrology: Using New Moon Power Days to Change and Revitalize Your Life
  • Watch Her (Hester Thursby Mystery #3)
  • Queen of the Road: The True Tale of 47 States, 22,000 Miles, 200 Shoes, 2 Cats, 1 Poodle, a Husband, and a Bus with a Will of Its Own
  • Me and Orson Welles
  • The Last Forever
  • Lily White
  • Medicine Woman
  • I Married Adventure: The Lives of Martin and Osa Johnson
  • M.D.: Doctors Talk About Themselves
  • The Official Dictionary of Sarcasm: A Lexicon for Those of Us Who Are Better and Smarter Than the Rest of You
See similar books…
Eleanor Brown is the New York Times and international bestselling author of the novel The Weird Sisters, and of the fitness inspiration book WOD Motivation.

Her next novel, The Light of Paris, will be published in July 2016!

Looking for a safe, supportive place to write? Join Eleanor's writing workshops:

Related Articles

Kazuo Ishiguro insists he’s an optimist about technology.  “I'm not one of these people who thinks it's going to come and destroy us,” he...
385 likes · 37 comments
“She remembered one of her boyfriends asking, offhandedly, how many books she read in a year. "A few hundred," she said.
"How do you have the time?" he asked, gobsmacked.
She narrowed her eyes and considered the array of potential answers in front of her. Because I don't spend hours flipping through cable complaining there's nothing on? Because my entire Sunday is not eaten up with pre-game, in-game, and post-game talking heads? Because I do not spend every night drinking overpriced beer and engaging in dick-swinging contests with the other financirati? Because when I am waiting in line, at the gym, on the train, eating lunch, I am not complaining about the wait/staring into space/admiring myself in reflective surfaces? I am reading!
"I don't know," she said, shrugging.”
“There are times in our lives when we have to realize our past is precisely what it is, and we cannot change it. But we can change the story we tell ourselves about it, and by doing that, we can change the future.” 186 likes
More quotes…