Book Review: "3 Willows" by Ann Brashares
*Although the books I review on my blog are almost always Christian fiction, there will be a few spotlighted regular fiction titles I will review from time to time.*
summer is a time to grow
Polly has an idea that she can't stop thinking about, one that involves changing a few things about herself. She's setting her sights on a more glamorous life, but it's going to take all of her focus. At least that way she won't have to watch her friends moving so far ahead.
Jo is spending the summer at her family's beach house, working as a busgirl and bonding with the older, cooler girls she'll see at high school come September. She didn't count on a brief fling with a cute boy changing her entire summer. Or feeling embarrassed by her middle school friends. And she didn't count on her family at all. . .
Ama is not an outdoorsy girl. She wanted to be at an academic camp, doing research in an air-conditioned library, earning A's. Instead her summer scholarship lands her on a wilderness trip full of flirting teenagers, blisters, impossible hiking trails, and a sad lack of hair products.
It is a new summer. And a new sisterhood. Come grow with them.
I am a HUGE fan of the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants book. I felt like those girls were telling my story about my teen years and that I sort of grew up with them. When the series ended, I was really disappointed but it was understood. When you go away to college, things change with your childhood friends. So I was very excited to hear that there would be another Sisterhood series with new characters. I was worried at first that it wouldn't be as good as the originals. Plus there were only going to be 3 girls this time. Well after reading this book, all my worries were laid to rest.
I feel as if I got to know the three girls very well throughout their stories. Their actions and thoughts were EXACTLY what I would have felt at their age. They acted like realistic fourteen year old girls. The author knows what it's like to be a teenager trying to change from being a kid to becoming more adult. I think my favorite was reading about Ama, who went from being someone determined to hate her summer to realizing that she needed this experience to help shape her. Plus all the wilderness adventure stuff was fun to read.
I liked seeing the cameos of the characters in the original books. It's like seeing old friends. It's cool to see that even in the book, the legend of the original Sisterhood lives on. I thought it was funny about how all the girls would try to imitate the magical jeans and how the clothes wouldn't fit on everyone. I'm pretty sure that probably happened in the real world as well. I'm actually glad that there is no magical clothing that ties the girls together this time. One thing I will say, I didn't like Effie in the original books and I still definitely do not like her after this book. There are many unkind words to be said about her. My only real complaint about this book is that Carmen is not mentioned at all. I mean for goodness sakes, Tibby's siblings get speaking time, but an original member of the Sisterhood isn't even named?
Since the characters in this book are younger than the original Sisterhood, nobody is having sex. There's kissing but nothing to hint anything stronger than that. It's a book about growing up and I have a feeling that a lot of girls will be able to relate to these three girls. It's very refreshing to read again about girls who can be true friends, having amazing summers and learn a lot about themselves without resorting to sex, drinking and cursing throughout the book. Fans of the original series will enjoy reading about the new set. I am eagerly waiting for the next book in the series.
This is a wholesome and enjoying read perfect for teens. Therefore this book I CAN recommend to the readers of this blog.
3 Willows by Ann Brashares is published by Random House Children (2009)