I first encountered Rebecca Wells when I read Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood, about seven years ago, long before there was even thought of a movie. I fell in love with the vivacious, scandalous, wonderful, and wonderfully human characters that Wells had created.
When I encountered them again, in Little Altars Everywhere, I thought, “Ok, we’re obviously in our dark period, now.” I didn’t dislike that book – it expanded on a lot of events that weren’t made clear in the other – but it didn’t have the same vibrance.
Ya-Yas In Bloom, the third book in the series, has some of the darkness of the second, and some of the effervescence of the first, and combines both into an enjoyable story. This time, the events are more centralized, different perspectives of one core incident, although there is a flashback to the forming of the Sisterhood, when the Ya-Yas were barely out of diapers. It’s much more an integrated story, though it keeps the format of being a series of vignettes.
Some critics have called it lackluster, but I disagree. True, it’s a much quieter novel than either of the others, but that’s not at all a bad thing. Even though it doesn’t have flash and melodrama, it’s still perfectly in keeping with the characters that Wells originally created.
I recommend it, but with the caution that it may be wiser to wait til it’s out in paperback, or borrow it from the library.
It should be noted. I am aware that Little Altars… was really the first book, however, I read Divine Secrets first, and they are not books that must be read in a specific order.