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The Pearl Sister (The Seven Sisters #4)
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April 2018: Strong Women > The Pearl Sister by Lucinda Riley - 4 stars

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message 1: by Amy (new) - rated it 4 stars

Amy | 8870 comments Finishing the book this morning, tears streaming down my face in the last few pages. I adored this!

Someone asked me last week, if its a standalone, or does one have to read the first four. Yes you do. while I am sure that anything could be read as a standalone, this is meant to be part of a series, one that has completely and exquisitely wrapped me up. So I am writing my review pretty much exclusively for Jolene - who introduced me to Book One (The Seven Sisters), or anyone else who has begun or is familiar with the series.

The Seven Sisters traces each of six sisters, who were adopted by a reclusive elusive father named Pa Salt, who names them each after a star in the Seven Sisters Constellation. Upon his death, each of the sisters are led with clues to discover the mystery of their origins, and of course to a new love and new life. There is a formula to these books, and to the stories of each sister held within - and each sister finds their way to discovering themselves, their hidden talents, and a new sense of belonging. The stories are written in dual timelines, from the great grandparent love story, to the seeking sister. The Pearl Sister leads the fourth sister CeCe (Caelone) first to Thailand and then to Australia, where she finds there is a lineage connected to Pearl Farming as well as Aboriginal Art. The story is formulaic, so there are not that many surprises, but the one twist in the tale, just fit so well for CeCe's character. It just made complete sense. Brava Lucinda.

So the series is based on some suspension of disbelief, which I find both troubling and compelling. The thing that makes you read on, other than its a fun historical fiction with a dual timeline, is trying to figure out the mystery of Pa Salt? How did he swoop in at just the right time, and find missing daughters about to be abandoned, who are connected to huge icons of art and industry and culture in the past? Its just about impossible and downright mystical, and by book four, you are like How in Hell Did this guy know the connections and the pasts of these babies and show up in time all around the world to find them? Clearly this explanation is what drives the ride.... And what we have to wait for Book Seven to pull together. That's the other compelling mystery. The Seventh Sister, often missing in the constellation, and missing in this families life. Its not just hinted and explicitly told in the title. We are all (Jolene and I) wondering about the Seventh Sister Merope, never found, but who will be by 2021, (keep going Lucinda, because this better be a great ending!) So book four, especially reinforces the seven sisters theme, as there is a similar aboriginal story. The Pa Salt part is confounding and does require a total suspension of disbelief that each of these impossibly found daughters from across the globe are related to legends in the field of their hidden extraordinary talent. But I can't help it. I got roped in, in Book One, and now I am down for all Seven, until Merope and the Mystery is revealed. Looks like there is a now a sisters Reunion in the year of Pa Salt's death, and I imagine by Book Seven I will be there as well. Sister Tiggy is next, and believe she lands somewhere in the Scottish Highlands. She if I am remembering, is the intuitive sister, who works with animals and elephants. Electra, the model/movie star is Book Six. I enjoyed it greatly. So if you want to start the series, it starts with the Seven Sisters.

A final note, meant for PBT: Putting this in the strong women category. Almost felt guilty doing so, but so many books are just naturally going to fall there, so why not get the extra point for it? There are a number of strong women in this book, from minor to major characters. CeCe, Camira, Chrissy, Sarah, Star, Ma (Salt). But the strong woman in question is Kitty Mercer - the historical fiction star of the story, who travels from Edinburgh, Scotland to Australia to begin her journey. She is the strong woman who defines the tale through and through. She deserves the extra point and with a flourish. But I will be reading other books for the monthly tag, so this won't be my only one.

message 2: by JoLene (new) - added it

JoLene (trvl2mtns) | 1532 comments Thanks Amy , I hope that your review prompts some others to seek out this series!! I still need to get to book 3, but am spacing them out for when I hit a book slump.

message 3: by Jason (new)

Jason Oliver | 2063 comments This sounds very inviting but then I think about a series.....I have many left unfinished already....and it scares me away.

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