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9 February 2015

Review: 'The Hurricane Sisters' by Dorothea Benton Frank (2015)

Hurricane season begins early and rumbles all summer long - for three generations of one family, drama is headed in their direction too.

At eighty, determined matriarch Maisie Pringle is a force to be reckoned with. She will have the final word on everything, especially when she's dead wrong. Her daughter, Liz, is caught up in the classic maelstrom of being middle-age and in an emotionally demanding career that will eventually open all their eyes to a terrible truth. And Liz's beautiful twenty-something daughter, Ashley, dreams of a future that keeps them all at odds.

This storm season, Maisie, Liz, and Ashley will deal with challenges that demand they face the truth about themselves. Can they establish a new order for the future of the family?

At the end of last year, I was contacted by Simon & Schuster regarding the release of Dorothea Benton Frank's newest novel, 'The Hurricane Sisters.' I straight away loved the beachy vintage feel of the book cover and the blurb also promised a captivating story with a Southern American atmosphere about three generations of women from the same family. I hadn't read any of the author's previous works, even though she has already released quite a few of them over the years, and I looked forward to being introduced to a new author and had my fingers crossed I'd enjoy 'The Hurricane Sisters' as much as I hoped I would!

'The Hurricane Sisters' revolves around three generations of women from the same family, starting with matriarch Maisie who is in her eighties and lives together with her fifteen year younger partner Skipper, who was actually initially hired by the family to drive Maisie around. Maisie does whatever she wants and doesn't mind what others think of her, but she does worry about her daughter Liz and granddaughter Ashley. Liz is struggling with different aspects of her life. Her relationship with her mother continues to be strained, just like the relationship with her two children, Ashley and Ivy; at the same time her marriage with successful businessman Clayton is going downhill with the two of them continuing to grow apart, especially since he doesn't understand her passion for her job helping female victims of domestic abuse. And then there's Ashley; a quirky twenty-something who wants nothing more than to become a successful artist. She falls head over heels in love with Senator Porter Galloway, which fits her dream of one day becoming the next Jackie O. Will the family be able to solve their issues and help each other with their struggles, or is it each woman simply taking care of herself?

I personally always really enjoy novels about family with a specific focus on different generations of the same family; this is also why I was really looking forward to picking up ‘The Hurricane Sisters.’ The three main female characters Maisie, Liz, and Ashley were all interesting and had their own story to tell and problems to deal with. I immediately warmed to the family and really enjoyed the fact that the story is told from different perspectives, which provides the reader with the opportunity to get to know all the characters as individuals and see what they are feeling and thinking. I also really liked the setting; the book is set in South Carolina (Sullivan’s Island) and I enjoyed the whole South American feel of the novel as a whole.

With this book, the author wanted to draw attention to the topic of domestic violence to women. This is a big issue in the area the book is set in, and I admire how the author used this element in the story and it’s obvious it’s a topic that lies close to her heart. I was not familiar with Dorothea Benton Frank’s novels before I picked up this one, but I was quite surprised by all the low ratings people have been giving this book. I’m unable to compare this book to the author’s other works, but I personally really enjoyed it and it has only made me more curious to read her other novels, especially if this is not considered one of her best books! Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed ‘The Hurricane Sisters’. It’s a quick, family-orientated, entertaining read; perfect for any women’s fiction fan who’s planning to spend a day at the beach or in the sun!
For more information about this book: / / Goodreads

Thanks to the publisher for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

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