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Sisters de Lily Tuck
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Sisters (edició 2017)

de Lily Tuck (Autor)

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489415,368 (3.24)1
A novel of marriage, infidelity, and obsession follows a new wife who struggles with her unrelenting fascination with her husband's first wife.
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It barely took me an hour to read "Sisters", Lily Tuck's latest novel (novella? short story?). Written in brief paragraphs, smoothly flowing in an almost stream-of-consciousness style, it makes for an entertaining and deceptively easy read. In reality, in this book there is so much that is subtly suggested and cunningly implied, that it packs in its few pages the effect of a novel thrice its length.

The unnamed narrator's marriage is haunted by the presence of her new husband's first wife - ominously referred to throughout as she - whom he divorced to marry the narrator. After some initial awkwardness, the narrator manages to maintain a decent relationship with her husband's son and daughter and, to a lesser extent, also with she/her. But we soon learn that beneath the genteel veneer, there is a lurking obsession, an all-consuming jealousy.

The bare bones of the plot will inevitably draw comparisons with Du Maurier's [b:Rebecca|17899948|Rebecca|Daphne du Maurier||46663], as both the author and her erudite narrator are very much aware. Indeed, there are knowing references to Du Maurier's novel which are quickly turned on their head ("I dreamed - not that I went back to Manderley - that I was in a big city..."). Similarly, that novel's dark, Gothic atmosphere is here replaced by a different sort of darkness - the darkness of black humour and biting satire, as we witness the making and unmaking of a contemporary marriage. Brilliant, witty stuff; sparkling like the champagne which propels the book to its denouement.

An electronic version of this novel was provided through NetGalley in return for an honest review. ( )
  JosephCamilleri | Mar 5, 2021 |
I can see the craft in this, but it's not to my liking. ( )
  KimMeyer | Oct 1, 2018 |

The remarkable flow of this fascinating short novel is mesmerizing. A difficult proposition if forced to put it down, and rare in the book-reading business. A writer who knows words and what they do, who thinks about the many questions posed in life, and one who examines them with courage and relentless charm. Lily Tuck is a great choice to spend extended time with.

I first heard of Lily Tuck in a fiction-writing class [a:Gordon Lish|232097|Gordon Lish|] was conducting during the summer of 1995 in Bloomington, Indiana. Tuck was another of the many writers Lish had acquired in his stable as editor for seventeen years at Alfred Knopf. But in class he championed loudly the skills of Lily Tuck and brought her to the attention of perhaps hundreds of his students. And because there were so many writers the great Lish published in his tenure at Knopf, and for the most part commercial failures amounting to a high percentage, Tuck has gone basically unnoticed by the mainstream, even though she won the coveted 2004 National Book Award in fiction for her novel [b:The News from Paraguay|77691|The News from Paraguay|Lily Tuck||1325348]. Her first book, published by Lish, [b:Interviewing Matisse, or The Woman Who Died Standing Up|574202|Interviewing Matisse, or The Woman Who Died Standing Up|Lily Tuck||561204], remains on my shelf, still unread after two previous false starts. But after reading Sisters I am intent now on a sufficiently renewed attack on those pages as soon as possible. Tuck is sophisticated, and obviously born of that class, based on her range of knowledge of the cultural elite.

Few writers can make you feel you are with them in the room. Intimately. Lily Tuck employs with her voice several anecdotal references to expensive tastes. With the ear of a classic composer, she plays her song adroitly, and disregarding the consequences of infidelities, makes them all feel worth it. ( )
  MSarki | Jan 7, 2018 |
This short and spare novel describes—from the point of view of the wife—a marriage. From their meeting, to marrying, to her helping raise his two teenagers, through the marriage of the daughter. His first wife, called "she" or "your mom" throughout, is always there in the background. There for the kids, there getting alimony payments, at family events--and the inauspicious start to the marriage foreshadows the end.

This novel very much reminds me of Fever Dream, even though the stories and themes themselves are very different.
Read this at the library while my car was in for a construction staple in the sidewall and a regular service. I had no book and no charger on me, but this was perfect, I didn't even need to check it out. ( )
  Dreesie | Nov 28, 2017 |
The "sisters" in Sisters by Lily Tuck are two women who are at different times married to the same man. This is a book of wife number 2's obsession. The story is a stream of consciousness tell-all that sounds like it comes from a therapist's couch. The book is memorable for its unlikable main character, its short length, and its unusual approach. Unfortunately, certain turns of this obsession ultimately make this not the book for me.

Read my complete review at

Reviewed for NetGalley ( )
  njmom3 | Sep 20, 2017 |
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A novel of marriage, infidelity, and obsession follows a new wife who struggles with her unrelenting fascination with her husband's first wife.

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