The Bird Sisters by Rebecca Rasmussen
Published by Crown Publishers, an imprint of Random House
Twiss and Milly may not have much, but they have one another. These days even their business of tending birds has mostly fallen by the wayside, and when people do bring birds for them to heal, they often cannot even manage to save the creatures. It hadn’t always been that way, just the two sisters on their own. At one point, they were part of a family, and Milly still believed she would one day marry and have children. It was the summer of 1947 that changed everything. In 1947, Milly was prim and Twiss was wild, but they were best friends, until their cousin showed up for the summer. Bett was older and endlessly fascinating to Twiss, and her presence would shatter their already fragile world.
The Bird Sisters is lovely and charming story. It takes place in rural Wisconsin, in a post-war world that seems to have been oddly untouched by World War II, giving the place an oddly innocent and naive feel. The story was well set up, alternating in each chapter between present day and 1947. While this constant switching did occasionally break up the flow of the story and keep me from becoming fully engrossed, the consistency of the switching did help, because the reader is never forced to guess from chapter to chapter which time period the story is in, it is simply whichever one the previous chapter was not in. This kept me from being pulled out of the story more than I already was with the switching of time periods.
Lovely and charming as The Bird Sisters was, something about it didn’t completely work for me. I admired Rasmussen’s writing, as well as the world and characters she created, but I was never fully engrossed in the story. It simply failed to captivate me, although it was an enjoyable read.
Take a look at The Bird Sisters, look at the storyline, go to a local physical bookstore, pick it up, read a couple of sample chapters. If you like what you see, rest assured that the same quality remains throughout the book and give it a try. Just because it wasn’t for me, doesn’t mean it isn’t for you.
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