Elizabeth's Reviews > The Sisters: The Saga of the Mitford Family

The Sisters by Mary S. Lovell
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's review
Dec 28, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: nonfiction, england, germany, france, europe
Recommended for: Everyone
Read in January, 2010

This book was insane, but also one of the most enlightening books I've read in a long time. It was embarrassing to realize how little I know (or remember) about the years that led up to WWII (I'm going to blame it on a science-focused preliminary education), and the motif that really impressed me was the massive, terrible, tidal wave of momentum that led up to the second "great" war.

The Sisters makes you think a lot about human nature and how ethics begin with the smallest actions. I once interviewed the dean of religious life at Stanford and he told me that the hardest ethical decisions are the little ones. "Everyone knows that killing is wrong, but those little decisions you make when no one is looking--those are the real tests."

There was an abundance of willful ignorance and laziness in Europe at that time. It's scary. I hope those mistakes are never repeated.

I'm not quite sure why a book about six sisters who had a penchant for dictators, communist activists and titled people made me think about this so much, but I think it was a fresh way way for me to learn about the war through the eyes of women who were sitting in on influential dinners, tea parties, the season, etc. Sometimes you learn more about the heart of a situation through the circumstantial.
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Reading Progress

01/04/2010 "This is one of those great books that makes you realize that you know nothing about the world."
01/04/2010 page 200
31.25% "This is one of those great books where you realize you know absolutely nothing."
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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message 1: by Valerie (new) - added it

Valerie I love that type of book! Will add it to my 'to-read' list right now.

message 2: by Lizzie (new) - added it

Lizzie I want to read this too. Nancy Mitford's The Pursuit of Love is one of my favorite books.

Elizabeth Oh! I'll have to try the pursuit of love then!

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