Sunday, August 31, 2014

All for a Sister- Allison Pittman

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

Description: In Hollywood during the Roaring Twenties, Celeste DuFrane has it all. Her father's work with color movie film opens doors that lead to the stardom she's always aspired to. But after losing her mother, she discovers that half the estate has been left to a woman accused of killing Celeste's baby sister before Celeste was even born. Dana Lundgren arrives on the steps of the DuFrane mansion having spent most of her life imprisoned for a crime that never happened. After accusing her of murder so many years ago, why did Marguerite DuFrane leave her a sizeable inheritance? As Celeste and Dana learn each other's stories, they come up with more questions than answers. Then a surprising discovery begins to fill in the missing pieces: Marguerite DuFrane's written confession, penned shortly before her death. Uncovering the treachery and deceit that changed the course of countless lives--most of all, their own--the two women find more than they ever dreamed of.

My Thoughts: All for a Sister beautifully depicts life in the twenties, complete with hairstyles and attitudes. Celeste behaved much the way I imagine the actresses in older movies behaving behind the set and as many women did in old clips I remember watching in high school. Pittman definitely did her research to make this time period come alive.

Even though I liked the portrayal of Celeste from Dana's point of view, I was not really able to connect with Celeste herself. She seemed a bit disconnected from the world around her, even this new woman who has come to live with her, a woman how she was raised believing had killed her sister. Even if I had learned that such was not true, I think I still would have been wary of a someone who had been hurt by my family in such a way.

I also found it difficult to follow the shifts in time. Though the dates were given at the head of each chapter, it still took me a little while to figure out who was speaking and at what time. I did notice a certain movie like quality to this (where time frames shift) and liked it from an artistic point of view, but found that it pulled me from an otherwise interesting story.

This is the first book I have read by Pittman, and so I do not know if she uses these time shifts in her other novels. If not, I am certain that I will love to read them and plan to find more of her novels as she has a beautiful way with history and layers of conflict.

I received this book from Tyndale publishers in exchange for an honest review.