Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Review: Confessions of the Sullivan Sisters by Natalie Standiford

Release Date: September 1, 2010
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Age Group: Young Adult
Pages: 320

The Sullivan sisters have some explaining to do. Their grandmother, known as Almighty, has taken offense at someone's poor judgment. So much so that she has given the entire Sullivan family an ultimatum: each member must write a confession to her or they will all be left penniless. Penniless? The girls know this cannot come to pass. How would they all adjust to life without the wealth and privilege their family has been steeped in for generations? Everyone assumes that it's one of them who has so offended Almighty, so Norrie, Sassy, and Jane reveal everything from love to disdain to murder in their letters to her. But is it enough to save themselves from the wrath of Almighty? (summary from Amazon)

I had pretty high expectations for this book because it sounded amazing and I absolutely LOVE the cover. Unfortunately, it did not fully live up to my expectations. Granted, there were lots of elements of the book that I liked, but some just didn't quite make the cut.
First of all, I was expecting exciting and dramatic characters who had dark secrets. Norrie, Sassie, and Jane all went through some exciting changes and problems, but I felt like I couldn't really connect to them emotionally. It might have been because Natalie Standiford was trying just a little too hard. I feel like Standiford could be an excellent writer, but her type of novel is just not a dramatic book about an upper class family with secrets. Which is where the writing comes in. She probably would have received higher marks for writing, but I just felt like she didn't do that well of a job developing the characters. The characters felt a bit forced and fake, and it just couldn't connect to them at all.Overall, the plot wasn't bad... it had a good premise. The whole book had a great premise, but I was just thrown off by the incomplete character development and the characters' ways of saying things like "Daddy-o" when referring to their father and calling their grandmother almighty. I think Standiford had a great idea, and she really has potential, but she was just trying a little too hard, which resulted in a fake feeling book. This book is a bit of a miss, but I would really like to see Natalie Standiford try, try again.





love always,

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