Between Sisters is a touching novel written by Kristin Hannah, an author known for her talent in crafting stories of human relationships. The book falls under the genre of women’s fiction, focusing on the complicated bond between two estranged sisters. With a publication date of 2003, it is one of the backlist books from Kristin Hannah’s collection that continues to captivate readers with its poignant themes and relatable characters.
The novel revolves around the lives of two sisters, Winona and Vivi Ann. Winona has always struggled with being the responsible one, taking care of her younger sister and single mother. On the other hand, Vivi Ann is the beautiful and wild one, the golden child of the family. As they grow up, their relationship is strained, and they end up living separate lives. However, when their mother’s illness brings them back together, they have to confront the past and the secrets that they’ve kept from each other.
The sisters’ lives are further complicated when Vivi Ann’s daughter, Zoe, appears on Winona’s doorstep one day, seeking refuge from her mother’s boyfriend. Winona takes the responsibility of raising Zoe and reconnecting with her sister. As they struggle to mend their relationship, the truth about their past begins to emerge, and they are forced to confront their deepest fears and secrets.
The characters in “Between Sisters” are complex and well-developed, each with their own unique backstory and motivations. Winona is the responsible sister who has always been weighed down by the burdens of her family. She is kind, loyal, and always willing to put others before herself. Vivi Ann, on the other hand, is the rebellious one who struggles to keep her life together. She is impulsive, passionate, and always chasing after something more.
The supporting characters in the book, such as Zoe and Vivi Ann’s ex-husband, add depth and nuance to the story, helping to drive the plot forward and add layers of complexity to the sisters’ relationship.
Themes and Symbolism:
“Between Sisters” explores several poignant themes, including the complexities of family relationships, the power of forgiveness, and the struggles of personal identity. The novel also delves into the idea of the past, and how it can shape who we are and the choices we make.
One of the significant symbols in the book is the house that the sisters grew up in, which is filled with memories, both good and bad. The house represents their past and serves as a reminder of the love they once had for each other, as well as the pain and secrets that they’ve kept hidden.
Writing Style and Pacing:
Kristin Hannah’s writing style is engaging and descriptive, allowing the reader to immerse themselves in the story and the characters’ lives. The pacing of the novel is also well-done, with a balance between introspective moments and action-driven scenes. The story is set in a small town, which adds to the book’s atmosphere and sense of community.
“Between Sisters” is a beautifully written novel that explores the complexities of family relationships and the power of forgiveness. The characters are well-developed, and the themes of the book are poignant and relatable. Kristin Hannah has once again demonstrated her talent for crafting stories that are both thought-provoking and heartwarming.
For readers who enjoyed “Between Sisters,” Kristin Hannah’s The Nightingale is another must-read. The novel, set in Nazi-occupied France, follows the lives of two sisters who must navigate the horrors of war and the complicated bonds of family.