Debut author Rosamund Lupton crafts a striking literary thriller with Sister, which received numerous starred reviews. When Beatrice learns her sister Tess is missing, she goes to London to join the search. And when everyone else gives up, only Beatrice soldiers on—determined to cut through the dark secrets and learn the truth behind her sister’s disappearance.
©2010 Rosamund Lupton (P)2011 Recorded Books,LLC
I haven't had the best of luck purchasing from the "Literary Fiction New Releases" section lately. Beginning to wonder if my expectations had become too high, I halfheartedly purchased "Sister" by Rosamund Lupton and prepared for yet another disappointing but somewhat diverting read. I was completely surprised when "Sister" grabbed me immediately and continued to be a satisfying, engrossing listen to the very end. Narrator Juanita McMahon was flawless: her delivery well paced, intonation perfectly capturing a wide range of characters.
Currently living in the U.S., twenty-something Beatrice is called home to England when her sister, Tess, goes missing and is ultimately found dead. Stunned and numb with grief, Beatrice struggles to get to know the person Tess had become in recent years so she can come to terms with this sudden and incomprehensible death. Of course, one question leads to another and it soon becomes clear that the answers needed to make sense of Tess' present are rooted in their family's complicated and haunting past.
The one little annoyance I had was how free spirited Tess is portrayed as a bit of a caricature: fragile genius hippie chick with noble social conscience, loved by all she meets. Upon reflection, however, I realized that even during flashbacks into the past, Tess is unable to speak for herself. All we know of her is through the recollections of others; and what we tend to do when some one we loves dies, is idealize them. This novel reminded me of "Restless" by William Boyd, which I loved. Both authors know how to spin a compelling, intelligent tale with characters flawed and fascinating.
LOVE! This book was great. Very sad. A wonderfully told story. Knowing the ending at the beginning of the book, made it impossible to stop listening. I was dying to know what happened to lead up to what we knew to be the ending. I highly recommend this one. Love, love, love it!
Yes. Juanita McMahon did a beautiful job narrating this book. Beatrice, her mother, even Tess came to life in startling clarity.
The weave between past and present... and the plot devices used... I didn't see many of them coming!
Her narration was just pitch-perfect and brilliant! I wish she read more thrillers or general market fiction, and fewer romances... but that's just me.
I read this book when it first came out, and I adored it. When I found it on Audible, I snapped it right up! This book is more character-focused and more layered and nuanced than a standard thriller. Action scenes are minimal, so if you want a shoot-'em-up book this might be "boring" (to quote another reviewer). But if you want a beautifully rendered book with character realization and wonderful wordsmithing... this is so worth a credit!
This book was really bad. I listen to books every day during my commute and am normally so excited to get in the car and listen, not this one. I almost didn't finish it but forced myself because I really don't like to give up on a book; listening felt like a chore. I'm really really surprised by all of the good reviews. I felt like after 12 hours of listening nothing really happened. And obviously there was a storyline but it was so boring, the twists don't even feel like twists, huge the lack of excitement. There are a lot of good audiobooks out there, do yourself a favor and skip this one.
Lovely story of the relationship between two sisters and how that relationship ends. A real portrait of grief and how it can impact all elements of someone's life. The structure of the story was particularly good and made for a suspenseful unwinding of the narrative. The reader struggled to differentiate the voices and I was never clear on the appropriate nationality of a couple of the characters, but in the end the story was worth the listen.
This story was very oddly different. At times, it was a bit hard to follow. If you are English as in Londoner, you will enjoy the accents and London references. Overall I recommend it because it was different. Thriller/murder mystery..with twists you will not expect. This was my first book by this author. I would listen to her again.
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Great story! It was an intriguing mystery but most of all I liked the way it was told – in 3 perspectives. Very original.
Beatrice’s sister Tess is missing, and we later find out she is dead. As a way to come to terms with Tess’ death, Beatrice decides to write a letter to Tess explaining what happened to her.
So there is the perspective of the research into Tess’ disappearance and death investigation as it unfolds.
At the same time, there is the perspective of Beatrice’s retelling of the events to the police, giving her statement to the investigator in the past tense, interwoven with and looking back on the real-time narrative of the ongoing investigation.
Then, the perspective of where she is as she is recalling all of this, looking back on the “statement giving” that’s looking back on the “death investigation”.
I thought it was all very clever; however I can see that if you are not paying attention it could get a little confusing!
‘The House I Loved’ by Tatiana de Rosnay is another book written as a letter to someone, but I found that one slow moving and a little boring. I was leery when I realized this book was in the same format, but even though it was similar in the way that there was a lot of personal reflections and recalling memories and looking back, this book was far more interesting because a mystery was slowly unravelling, bit by bit new information was emerging about the investigation and that made it more compelling. This being said, after a while it was just one cliff-hanger too many!
I thought I saw the ending coming a mile away… Ok, here comes a little spoiler so stop reading if you don’t want to know.
When he said his bike was stolen and all that was left was the chain! And then he suggested a walk in the park… pul-leeeeeeze! So obvious! “you’ll die where your sister died” ugh! gimme a break! But then there was the revelation that it was in this state (drugged and fading) that she “wrote the letter to her sister” and that this is what she meant when she said her body was deteriorating. Great Twist!
I listened to Sister several months ago and I have to say that it is still on my mind. There is something innately beautiful about this novel. Is it the unbreakable bonds between siblings? The heartbreak of not knowing the sequence of events leading to the death of someone you love? A pain that's enough to drive one to despair? Or to drive a person to find the truth behind the pain? I can't say but what keeps popping into my head about when I think about Sister is that I loved it!
I found the story to be intense, emotional, and yes, sometimes it creeps along. But even during those moments there is a subdued sense of tension that runs behind the mundane. And the ending really is a surprise and I am still stunned whenever I think about it.
I would compare Rosamund Lupton's style with that of the master of suspense, Ruth Rendell and her stand alone novels or her novels that she writes under her pseudonym, Barbara Vine. Those twisted psychological thrillers that focus on character development which is the driving force behind the story.
And Juanita McMahon is a superb narrator and was perfect for this novel. Her narration is steady, thoughtful and subtle. But when necessary she adds just the right tone to bring the suspenseful intensity that is necessary for a scene.
Now after all that, I got to go listen this stunner again!
This book is boring, artificial, and failing to engage me as a listener. I had listened for 3 hour now, and I am done...I love Juanita MC Mahon, but her great talent cannot save this piece of literary garbage. I am getting a refund on this one.
I own a small shop selling custom/costume Jewelry. I love to listen to audio books while I create jewelry. I love all animals and get very upset when they aren't treated well, even in fiction.
I didn't like this one at all! Though I believe the "system" was much more true to life than most folks would like to believe. Contains cruelty to animals- mice. I finished listening to it because I bought it--- not one I'd listen to again.
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