by Ann Brashares
The fourth and final installment in the stories of the Sisterhood was the least juvenile of a series that really is universal, and shouldn’t be ignored just because of it’s YA label. In this novel, the girls are separate more than not, and the Pants are shared throughout their first year of college, not just during the summer. While not every story ends up completely happy, each of these young women grows and changes and sets the stage for what her life will become, and it’s great to watch them all deal with real issues, that real college freshman often encounter, and triumph over their personal obstacles.
I loved this series because the girls were so real.
I wanted to hate this book because it meant saying goodbye to old friends, but the beauty of books is that you can always re-read them.
Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants / Second Summer of the Sisterhood / Girls in Pants (3 Book Set) by Ann Brashares
Despite the fact that a very kind author sent me a review copy of his book, and despite the fact that I’ve read the first fifty pages and found it gripping, having been burned to a crisp put me in the mood for light, fluffy reading.
Since I’ve seen The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants on cable many times at this point, and even rented the dvd when it was first available, and since my friend Erin had mentioned them several weeks ago (months, really) when the fourth book had just come out, AND since YA books are less expensive than general fiction, I ordered them all.
I’m glad I did. Like J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Brashares’s novels are not all all “kiddie lit” but well-written, interesting coming-of-age novels that happen to have teenaged protagonists. The four girls who make up the Sisterhood are all three-dimensional. None of them are perfect. All of them are unique. Their stories are every bit as interesting as any more grown up chick-lit characters, and the writing is considerably less fluffy than many. Bookstores and publishers may classify these books as YA, but to me, they’re comfort reading. You know there will ultimately be a mostly-happy ending, but you also know the characters will progress, and that not everything will be sunshine and roses.
I’m a fast reader. I received these on Wednesday evening, and am now a bit more than half way through the third book. Is it too early for me to recommend them? No. Because everyone has gone through adolescence, and that makes these novels (which, at around 300 pages each, are a satisfying length) truly universal.
If you have daughters. If you are a daughter. If you are remotely in touch with your inner teen-aged girl, you must read these books.