Title: The Sweeney Sisters
Author: Lian Dolan
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publication Date: April 28th, 2020
Publisher: William Morrow
Thanks to the publisher for the free copy! (I received a copy for reviewing. All opinions are my own.)
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“An accomplished storyteller returns with her biggest, boldest, most entertaining novel yet—a hilarious, heartfelt story about books, love, sisterhood, and the surprises we discover in our DNA that combines the wit of Jonathan Tropper with the heart of Susan Wiggs.
Maggie, Eliza, and Tricia Sweeney grew up as a happy threesome in the idyllic seaside town of Southport, Connecticut. But their mother’s death from cancer fifteen years ago tarnished their golden-hued memories, and the sisters drifted apart. Their one touchstone is their father, Bill Sweeney, an internationally famous literary lion and college professor universally adored by critics, publishers, and book lovers. When Bill dies unexpectedly one cool June night, his shell-shocked daughters return to their childhood home. They aren’t quite sure what the future holds without their larger-than-life father, but they do know how to throw an Irish wake to honor a man of his stature.
But as guests pay their respects and reminisce, one stranger, emboldened by whiskey, has crashed the party. It turns out that she too is a Sweeney sister.
When Washington, DC based journalist Serena Tucker had her DNA tested on a whim a few weeks earlier, she learned she had a 50% genetic match with a childhood neighbor—Maggie Sweeney of Southport, Connecticut. It seems Serena’s chilly WASP mother, Birdie, had a history with Bill Sweeney—one that has remained totally secret until now.
Once the shock wears off, questions abound. What does this mean for William’s literary legacy? Where is the unfinished memoir he’s stashed away, and what will it reveal? And how will a fourth Sweeney sister—a blond among redheads—fit into their story?
By turns revealing, insightful, and uproarious, The Sweeney Sisters is equal parts cautionary tale and celebration—a festive and heartfelt look at what truly makes a family. (Goodreads)
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Lian Dolan is a writer and talker. She’s the author of two Los Angeles Times best-selling novels,Helen of Pasadena and Elizabeth the First Wife published by Prospect Park Books. Her next novel,The Sweeney Sisters, will be published in 2020 by William Morrow. She’s a regular humor columnist for Pasadena Magazine and has previously written monthly columns for O, The Oprah Magazine and Working Mother Magazine. She’s also written for TV, radio and websites. Lian is the producer and host of Satellite Sisters, the award-winning talk show she created with her four real sisters. On Satellite Sisters, she’s interviewed everyone from Nora Ephron to Madeleine Albright to Big Bird. Satellite Sisters began life as a syndicated radio show and is now a top-rated podcast for women. The recent book by the Satellite Sisters,You’re the Best: A Celebration of Friendship, is popular with book clubs.A popular speaker who combines humor and heart, Lian has appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, CBS Sunday Morning and The Today Show and many local TV stations. She’s been a featured speaker at the LA Times Festival of Books, the Santa Barbara Celebrity Authors Lunch, the Literary Guild of Orange County Festival of Women Authors and dozens of other events at libraries, book stores, schools and women’s organizations across the country. In 2020, she’ll be on the faculty of the Erma Bombeck Writers Workshop. Lian graduated from Pomona College with a degree in Classics. She lives in Pasadena, California with her husband, two sons and a big German shepherd.
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What would you do if your whole world gets turned upside down? Not just because your father died but because now you have found out you have a half-sister?
For the Sweeney sisters, this is their reality.
The reason I wanted to read this one is because it is based around sisters. I have three sisters and I always enjoy reading about this type of bond. It just makes it easier to relate to the characters.
This story covers all their point-of-views told in third person. It made it easy to understand how each one was feeling when it came to the death of their father and the news about their half-sister. I also liked that we got a point-of-view from her too.
Not only are these sisters facing grief but there are so many questions they have and their lives are far from perfect when it comes to their relationships and even their jobs. Each sister is facing different things and I liked reading about each one. Some of the twists, I definitely wasn’t expecting.
There is definitely heartbreak found on the pages but there is also humor. The author does a great job of weaving the two together.
Overall, I enjoyed this one! It was just the right book to take a break from fantasy and dive back into a contemporary read.
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