Aug 7, 2022

The Frederick Sisters Are Living the Dream by Jeannie Zusy: Sunday Salon

 

The Frederick Sisters Are Living the Dream: A Novel

by 

Publication, September 20, 2022, Atria Books

Description 

A very funny, occasionally romantic, and surprisingly moving novel about how one woman’s life is turned upside down when she becomes caregiver to her sister with special needs.


Every family has its fault lines, and when Maggie gets a call from the ER in Maryland where her older sister lives, the cracks start to appear. Ginny, her sugar-loving and diabetic older sister with intellectual disabilities, has overdosed on strawberry Jell-O.

Maggie knows Ginny really can’t live on her own, so she brings her sister and her occasionally vicious dog to live near her in upstate New York. Their other sister, Betsy, is against the idea but as a professional surfer, she is conveniently thousands of miles away.

Thus, Maggie’s life as a caretaker begins. It will take all of her dark humor and patience, already spread thin after a separation, raising two boys, freelancing, and starting a dating life, to deal with Ginny’s diapers, sugar addiction, porn habit, and refusal to cooperate. Add two devoted but feuding immigrant aides and a soon-to-be ex-husband who just won’t go away, and you’ve got a story that will leave you laughing through your tears as you wonder who is actually taking care of whom. (publisher)

My NetGalley/Goodreads review:

Bets, Ginny, and Maggie are the Frederick sisters whose relationships are featured in this novel. Maggie the third sister, becomes a caregiver for special needs middle sister Ginny, while the oldest, Bets, lives a life of California surfing.

Sisters and how they relate to one another, the sacrifices they make for one another, or sacrifices they don't make, are the themes
. A surprising turn around at the end of the novel shows the sisters in a new light. 

The novel, however, takes too long to get to this point, frustrating the reader. The book could have been shorter and some of the middle events cut or omitted in order to get to the ending.

I enjoyed the first three-quarters of the book and wished the main points, though surprising and thought provoking, could have been reached earlier.

What are you reading this week? 

Memes: The Sunday Post hosted by The Caffeinated BookreviewerAlso,  It's Monday: What Are You Readingand Sunday SalonStacking the ShelvesMailbox Monday

24 comments:

  1. I don't think they don't edit books as well as they once did; I know I've read several lately that could have been tightened up and shortened by at least 50 pages.

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    Replies
    1. Granted I read the ARC, I hope the editors will take my comments to heart on NetGalley, for the final copy.

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  2. Hope they tighten this up a bit before publication... sounds like it has possibilities.

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  3. Hmmm, I have this ARC coming up soon. I just enjoyed the dog on the cover. Nice honest review!

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  4. I like quick reads that get going and don't drag out as well. I'm reading the first Inspector Morse novel. Have a good week reading! http://www.lyndonperrywriter.com/2022/08/stacking-shelves-weekly-roundup-for-aug.html

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  5. I like to watch the dynamics between sisters. I never had any!

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    Replies
    1. That was a very good aspect of this book.

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  6. Sounds like an interesting story. I often feel that books could be tightened up. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

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  7. Your book looks good! Enjoy your week, and here are my WEEKLY UPDATES

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  8. I love a good sisters story so will keep it in mind!
    Mary @Bookfan

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  9. This sounds like such a wonderful novel. Thanks for sharing and for visiting my blog.

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  10. I see too many books that start well suffer from the lack of a good editor. This sounds like one of these. A lot of my peers are facing situations like this, and I think the idea behind the book has a lot of promise.

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    Replies
    1. Luckily the editors have time to re-edit the book as this was an ARC.

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  11. The dynamics between the sisters is what drawn me to this book but I'm not sure about the slow parts, though.

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    Replies
    1. The final copy of the book might be different from this ARC.

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  12. Sounds like the humor will help with the trauma of caretaking. Happy Reading!

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    Replies
    1. The disabled person is a treat in herself and helps her sister too.

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I love getting comments and your thoughts...

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