- About Me
- Bucket Lists
- Reading Challenges
- Contact Me
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
2012 BOTY: A Gift for My Sister by Ann Pearlman
Sky is down-to-earth and responsible; Tara is unpredictable and flighty. They're half sisters who never connected in a meaningful way. Their lives have gone different directions.
Sky is a lawyer on the West Coast, married with a daughter. She is comfortable with her life, content and happy. Tara is the keyboardist in a rap group with four young black men, one of whom is her boyfriend and the father of her son. They are preparing for their first tour - their chance to break it big.
And then everything falls apart.
Sky's best friend dies. She is distraught and unsettled. Two weeks later, she loses her job and takes her husband to the hospital with a MRSA infection the same day. She feels as if her life is unraveling.
The tragedies that affect Sky move to bring the two sisters together for a journey - both literally and metaphorically. They move across the country together - following the tour for the rap band as they make their way back to Michigan.
I received A Gift for My Sister by Ann Pearlman as a Goodreads giveaway. I really wanted to like it. I wanted to like it a lot. But I struggled. It started out really promising. I loved the plot line. I thought it was a beautiful idea. A great premise and good writing. Pearlman managed to keep the flow light and casual while still staying interesting and poignant.
But what lost me was the progression of the characters and - honestly - just the basis of the character of Tara altogether.
Sky started out strong and lovable. I felt for her. I wanted her to be happy. But she slowly dissolved into a pile of self-pity and depression. Granted, there were circumstances that warranted this, but it was over the top and it made it difficult to like her. Instead, her whining began to grate.
As for Tara...well, I disliked her from the beginning. I'll be honest. This wasn't the fault of the writing or the style. In fact the good writing continued. But Tara just irritated me. She is the type of person that drives me crazy. I am far too OCD for her flighty and immature attitude. Her rock star persona left a lot to be desired.
In fact, that's where the book primarily lost me. I started to lose interest anytime there was something about the rap band or their gigs. I just didn't care. Get the people together in another setting - like relaxing together at a hotel pool - and things were great. They started looking up. But I REALLY got tired of reading about the "dudes", "homies" and Tara beginning every sentence with "like". I wanted to slap her. I felt like all of the characters who made up the rap band, with the exception of Smoke (I adored Smoke) were too dumbed down. Furthermore, the band could've easily been referred to simply as "the band" or "the crew". They guys could just be "guys" or "band mates/members" or "men". But dudes?? It felt far too...high school and clashed with the more adult themes in the book. Honestly, I just wanted Tara to be smarter.
The story is good. Really. I loved the story. Those little things just irritated me. I also felt that the ending just kind of showed up. It wrapped up at an awkward moment. It could've ended about 10 pages earlier and been perfect and tidy. But as it was, the ending just didn't feel complete.
A Gift for My Sister by Ann Pearlman rated 3 out of 5 stars.