Monday, August 6, 2012

Review: "Sisterhood Everlasting"

Sisterhood Everlasting by Ann Brashares
4 out of 5 stars

This is the 5th and final book in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series and boy, is it a cry-fest. If you've been living under a rock and never heard of these books, here's a brief synopsis thus far: four BFF's find a pair of magical jeans that happen to fit them all equally well. They share the pants over four summers together and apart, good and bad things happen, people are found and lost, and their friendship grows even more. Fast forward 10 years and the friends are nearly 30 and spread across the world. Are they still BFF's? Well, sort of.

Let's start with Carmen...she's living in New York with fiance Jones, who reminds me of Smith from Sex & The City, only Jones is a jerk. Carmen has finally made it to the big time and is an Actress, capital A. She's super busy, obsessed with keeping her weight down (and out of her big butt), and glued 24/7 to her iPhone. Not that there's anything wrong with that. ;) She'd love more Latina casting, but her agent forces her to lighten her hair and go for the "white" roles.

Lena lives in Rhode Island and is still drawing, painting, and pining over Kostos. Seriously, get over him already. She's incredibly awkward and anti-social, preferring to stay home and draw pictures of her feet.

Bee is still with Eric, in California, and he helps to ground her wild and jumbled ways and thoughts. She is still spontaneous, wanting the most sunlight in her life, loses her phone constantly and bicycles everywhere. She is terrified of settling down with Eric permanently, even though she is heart-achingly in love with him.

Tibby is the farthest (furthest?) away, physically and emotionally. She moved with Brian to Australia two years before and the rest of the girls hardly get to talk with her. She has purposely distanced herself and no one knows why. Until one day, she sends all 3 girls a letter and tickets to Santorini, Greece for a reunion of the Sisterhood and everything changes.

Even though the book is depressing as hell in some points, I think it would make a beautiful movie. Especially considering how much the actresses have grown up as well. America Ferrera has changed so much since the first movies and her Ugly Betty days, I think she epitomizes Carmen's transformation into this sleek, stunning "Americanized" actress. Plus, I love movies shot in Greece, it's such beautiful scenery. :)

If you read and enjoyed the first 4 books in this series, I would highly recommend the final book. If you need a good cry, this is the book for you. If your BFF has just moved across the country and you don't know how you'll live without her, well you may want to skip it hah!

Huge, gigantic spoilers in this part...if you have any intention or inclination to read this book, don't read anymore! I wasn't spoiled before I read it and I am so glad, because I don't think I would have been able to pick it up if I had.

I guess my first clue that something weird was going on should have been the cover...only 3 girls frolicking on the beach? That's odd. No chapters from Tibby's perspective? Hmm...Tibby's not at the airport? Well, she probably got held up. Wait, she's not at the house either? She doesn't come home all night? What's going oooonnnn?? Why did Tibby have to die?? I don't see how this benefited the story at all, honestly. She could have been sick, but gotten better. It just feels like a disservice to all the people who have read and loved these stories over the years.

Honestly, I didn't believe for a minute that she killed herself; Tibby was always one of my favorites and she was just too strong and angry to give up like that. I was happy to see that she finally let herself love Brian (although the fact that 3 of the 4 girls are with the same guys they loved in high school is a little (lot) hard to believe). When I found out she had a daughter and named her Bailey, I bawled. Seriously bawled. The chapters with Bee learning to grow up and take care of this mini-Tibby were some of the best parts for me.

There were some not so great parts too, of course. I got bored with the Lena/Kostos thing in the 2nd or 3rd book, so why would I want more of the same 10 years later? Yes, I know it's supposed to be the "big love" but come on. Also, Carmen meeting the man on the train with his children. I know it was meant to be a break from Jones and a way for her to go back to her "roots" and stuff, but I don't know. Bee running away, again, and finding herself back with Eric where she belongs, again. And the worst part, like the best, for me was Tibby. How could she keep this from her best friends, not to mention her family? Bailey? Being sick? All of it, for 2 long years? It's just making me want to cry all over again, thinking of it.

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