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The Good Sister Book Cover The Good Sister
Jamie Kain
Young Adult, Contemporary Fiction
St. Martin's Griffin
October 7, 2014

The Kinsey sisters live in an unconventional world. Their parents are former flower-children who still don’t believe in rules. Their small, Northern California town is filled with free spirits and damaged souls seeking refuge from the real world. Without the anchor of authority, the three girls are adrift and have only each other to rely on.

Rachel is wild. Asha is lost. Sarah, the good sister, is the glue that holds them together. But the forces of a mysterious fate have taken Sarah’s life in a sudden and puzzling accident, sending her already fractured family into a tailspin of grief and confusion. Asha has questions. Rachel has secrets. And Sarah, waking up in the afterlife, must piece together how she got there.

Jamie Kain brings us The Good Sister, a stunning debut young adult novel about love in all its joyful, painful, exhilarating manifestations, and about the ties that bind us together, in life and beyond.

I’ve always been interested in stories between sisters. Maybe it’s because I only have one sister and we’re not even super close. But I’m really intrigued by other people’s relationships with their sisters and what makes them click or not click. That’s exactly why I wanted to review The Good Sister by Jamie Kain. The fact that their family is unconventional and that one of the sisters is already dead made it all the more intriguing to me.

I guess you could say that Sarah, Rachel and Asha are your typical siblings. Sarah’s the good, responsible one, who has been battling cancer on and off. She’s the one that everybody likes. Asha’s the spoiled baby of the family, Sarah’s favorite sister, who was so devastated about her sister’s death that she didn’t know how to deal. Then there’s Rachel, the middle child, the wild one and the resident family rebel.

Each sister has their individual stories to tell that all connects to the day that Sarah died and the truth behind her death. It’s interesting to imagine how different they all are from each other, which leads to all sorts of misunderstandings and fights typical of any sibling relationship. But at the same time, I love how, by digging deep into their relationship, you still find that bond and love for each other despite their differences.

How Jamie Kain was able to portray the dynamics of this sisterhood, even though it was already established early on in the story that Sarah’s already dead, is just great. This was nicely done with flashbacks and also by letting each sister tell her side of the story. I love how the story unfolds by letting each sister alternately tell the readers of their experience in their own perspectives. I think that how their stories come together in the end is exactly the kind of journey each sister was taking in coming to terms with Sarah’s death. This approach is brilliant!

I also love how Kain was able to portray with such authenticity the realities of life in a family of divorce. Being from a broken family myself, I could definitely relate to this part of the story. Actually, I often found myself reflecting on whether there are similarities between the sisters’ reaction to the divorce and my daughters’ reaction to the demise of my marriage to their dad. It’s nice to read about the children’s perspective in this and be reminded of the fact that divorce doesn’t just happen to the couple only but to the children too.

This is definitely that kind of book that will leave you reflecting about your life, about death and yes, about your own relationship with your family. I definitely recommend this one!


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  1. Family kind of book for reading…I’ll try to read this one too.

  2. I like stories about families. I have this fascination with characters kasi, and usually when the central characters are relatives, there’s so much history that can be dug up from one book. Makes it a more interesting read for me.
    Patty | MrsC recently posted…Spread Healthy Smiles with Lotte Xylitol Dental Health GumMy Profile

  3. I also like reading book about family but if there’s death, nasasad agad ako. I want happy ending. 🙂
    Michi recently posted…The Curtain Rises for The Theatre at SolaireMy Profile

  4. I think I need to prepare some tissue paper for this book. The review itself is already heartwrenching.
    Mitchryan recently posted…How to Throw a Kawaii / Lolita Themed Slumber PartyMy Profile

  5. I can see the conflicting personalities of the sisters. It would be exciting how this influences the story.
    Franc Ramon recently posted…Enervon Activ Brings You The Temple Run Digital PromoMy Profile

  6. Sometimes, there are things that hide deep inside us that are covered with outside impressions. This seems like a good book.
    Graceful Mist recently posted…5 Great Lessons I Learned during My Freshman Year in CollegeMy Profile

  7. I love books that mirror the harsh but poignant realities of life. Thanks for sharing, perhaps I’ll try reading this one.
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  8. I think I will read this book soon. I have no sister since I am an only child. i don’t know who to feel when you have siblings. Can’t wait to read this book. Thanks for sharing.
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  9. Is this available on Kindle? I like the story line!
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  10. I like stories about family specially about sisters because I have a sister.
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  11. This looks really interesting will look for an ebook copy of this book.
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  12. Read your review again, and I suddenly remembered The Virgin Suicides. Have you read it? That was one depressing book about sisters hehe.
    Patty | MrsC recently posted…Homework, Then and Now #MotherhoodMondayMy Profile

  13. Awww, I must find this book soon, in Amazon or Kindle.
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