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My Reviews

Unconvincing, Insightful, Interesting
not as good as

i really enjoyed this book and although the characters were well-drawn, i don't think that they were as particularly interesting as those in The Secret Life of Bees. yes, the choices they made were not of the utmost in moral character, but if you want to read a book where all the characters are good and they all make good choices i would recommend something in the children's genre. although this was a work of fiction, it was about "real" people and i found most of their choices to be true to who they were, even if they were objectionable. the Jessie/Brother Thomas "dance" felt a little too romeo and juliet to me at times--the parts about how they were falling for each other seemed a litle fluffy. as far as the whole Nelle (and the other "adults") lying business, i suppose she (they) was trying not to hurt her (Nelle's)children further, and if you find that hard to believe you obviously did not grow up in a family that believes if you don't talk about things they didn't really happen (as my husband did). denial does wonderful things for some people's peace of mind--obviously not the case for Nelle, but again, this was a work of fiction (LOL)....

A quick read of a grand tale.....

Brothers was an easy read but sometimes felt epic in it's storyline. Tan and Shento were both at times likable and at other times irritating--in other words, they were real characters with believable emotions, even if some of the story fell into the stuff of Chinese folk tales and legends. I enjoyed the way the author found ways to interlace the lives of these two young men even as they were emotionally and geographically worlds apart. In any other novel these connections would be cheap plot devices and fell utterly contrived, but here they lend the novel an air of epic styling and added something rather than detracting from it.

Fun, Interesting, Inspiring
An okay read, relationships were nice, characters somewhat cliched

Reading this felt like the author bit off more than she could chew. There was SO MUCH to try to fit in to what was a decent number of pages but could have easily been doubled to accommodate numerous themes, characters, relationships,pop culture and political references that weren't fully fleshed out or simply could have been expanded on.

Whether it was lazy writing or editorial hacking, there were some things that left me feeling a little high and dry at the end of this book. Political references abundant in the beginning seem to be dropped halfway through the decades-long story. Some characters were caricatures (Audrey in particular). The point of view jumped from the first-person telling through two characters' eyes to third person on several others' seemingly unnecessarily or without reason. What could have been a great story through one's eyes became a little disjointed and lopsided with a jumping POV.

The best thing I took away from this book is the strong relationships the women had with each other. The writing itself, about said relationships, was distracting to say the least. Definitely reservations, but not the worst read.

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