Monday, May 26, 2008

The Wednesday Sisters

In a book perfect for book clubs, Meg Waite Clayton tells the story of five young women, wives and mothers, who find each other, and a lifelong friendship, in a children's park in Palo Alto, California. Frankie, Linda, Kath, Brett, and Ally are The Wednesday Sisters, women who support each other in the turbullient, changing years of the late '60s and early '70s.

Mary Frances O'Mara, Frankie, tells the story of five women who share an unspoken dream. When Frankie meets Linda, and then the others, she learns they all love books. Their book discussions eventually turn to a discussion of writing, and a dream no one dares whisper, that of being published someday. So, The Wednesday Sisters are born, when they agree to meet at the picnic tables on Wednesday mornings to write and critique the writing. This honesty about the writing forces them to share other secrets. Over the years, they gradually reveal more to each other. Readers learn early about the death of Linda's mother. But, why does Brett wear white gloves? Each woman will eventually share her deepest fears.

Frankie's voice is the right one to tell the story of five women who grow and change with a changing country. Her story looks back at the early years of lifelong friendship, friendship that grows and reflects changes in the early '70s. The Miss America pageant that links their lives is a perfect vehicle to show the changes in these five women, as well as the country.

I read the first two paragraphs of The Wednesday Sisters, and I knew it would be a wonderful book. Who can resist the second paragraph? "That's us, there in the photograph. Yes, that's me-in one of my chubbier phases, though I suppose one of these days I'll have to face up to the fact that it's the thinner me that's the "phase," not the chubbier one. And going left to right, that's Linda (her hair loose and combed, but then she brought the camera, she was the only one who knew we'd be taking a photograph). Next to her is Ally, pale as ever, and then Kath. And the one in the white gloves in front-the one in the coffin-that's Brett."

Frankie, Linda, Ally, Kath and Brett. It's worthwhile meeting them in The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton.

Meg Waite Clayton's website is www.megwaiteclayton.com

The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton. Ballantine Books, ©2008. ISBN 978-0345502827 (hardcover), 304p.

23 comments:

lorisreadingcorner said...

This is on it's way to me. I can't wait to read it!

Lesa said...

After I got into this one, Lori, I couldn't put it down.

Kay said...

I'm very much looking forward to this one. Maybe another for the vacation. Let's see, that's about 15 so far! LOL

Lesa said...

Are you going anyplace on your vacation, Kay, or staying home and reading? (grin)

It's a good one!

Kay said...

We are going to Ruidoso, NM and, yes, I will be spending the majority of my time reading. Hubby will golf.

Lesa said...

Oh, now that sounds like a nice vacation, Kay. Have fun, and I know you'll have some good books to take.

Kylee said...

I got this late last week and started it yesterday morning. I'm already on page 190. It's so great!

Lesa said...

I agree, Kylee. It's hard to put down.

Les said...

I read this last week while traveling to and from San Diego. I should have my review posted later this coming weekend. I think you enjoyed it more than I...

Lesa said...

I'll check your review, Les. I was reading it, looking at how much there was to use with a book club, as well as reading for my own pleasure. We don't do "meaty" book discussions. I think there's plenty here for the kind of groups we have.

Les said...

I enjoyed it, but it's not one I loved. I think I was too distracted on my trip (out to see my brother while he was in the hospital). Should've waited to read it while sitting by a pool this summer!

Lesa said...

Oh, you're right, Les. It's much more a pool book than a hospital book. I read Dennis Lehane or Lee Harris as hospital books, something that I can really escape into. I hope your brother is OK.

trish said...

I liked your review. I was concerned because I'd seen other bloggers say, Meh, but I am so in love with it. I'll be linking back to you in my review. :-)

Lesa said...

Thanks, Trish! It has good discussion material for a book club. And, it is a good pool book. Thanks for linking!

Actually, the book I "loved," and I'll be reviewing tomorrow is The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen. Again, not for everyone. But, it's my favorite book of the year, so far.

Les said...

I just posted my review, Lesa.

Lesa said...

Thanks, Les. I'm going to read it right now.

teabird said...

This sounds like a wonderful book - I have writing friends, and I'll share it.
Thank you!

Lesa said...

You're welcome, Teabird. It should mean even more if you have writing friends. Enjoy!

LisaMM said...

Great review! Oh I can't wait to start this book! It's sitting on my nightstand waiting it's turn.

The author Meg Waite Clayton wrote a guest post for my blog about her real life book club, The Wednesday Sisters! You can check it out here if you like:

lisamm.wordpress.com/2008/06/13/guest-post-the-wednesday-sisters-book-group-by-meg-waite-clayton/

Lesa said...

Thank you, Lisa! I'm going to check it out first thing tomorrow.

I'm sure you'll enjoy the book, if you enjoyed her posting to your blog. Don't keep it waiting too long!

Jill said...

You can check out my review of this book at www.breakingthespine.blogspot.com

Lesa said...

Thanks, Jill! I'm going to check it out this morning.

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