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young adult book reviews & more

3 Willows by Ann Brashares

3 Willows: The Sisterhood Grows (3 Willows (Hardback))Friends Polly, Jo, and Ama have gradually grown apart over the years, despite a strong bond since they were little. Polly is the dreamer, often lost in books. Jo is the lost one, looking for friends in more popular older girls. And Ama is the academic one, unsure of what else she’s good at. It’s the summer before they start high school, and each will change, whether they want to reinvent themselves or not. Polly wants to fix her physical appearance, Jo wants to evade the tough parts of her life by cementing her social standing for the upcoming year, and Ama is stuck in a wilderness camp instead of the library. But despite their changes, one thing remains, their friendship, because their bond is the true kind that’s more than tough to break.

I’ll admit that 3 Willows was hard to get into at first. I kept getting Polly, Jo, and Ama mixed up because I felt that their backgrounds and personalities were kind of forced on me, and they took a little to get used to. However, as the story progressed, I warmed up to each girl as I began to understand who they were. The plot and telling of the story is a little scattered and hard to follow at times, especially with all the references to this or that minor character, but it was still amusing, moving, and heartwarming. Ultimately, though, despite the sometimes boring plot and large cast of characters, I really liked 3 Willows. It tells a story of friendship that is so strong, it survives every hit that comes at it, no matter how big or small and every separation, no matter how long or far; it’s a friendship that connects people on a deeper level and eventually changes them for the better, even if those people were a little derailed before. And it’s a beautiful thing, what Brashares has done with 3 Willows, only made more poetic by the frequent references to the three willow trees Polly, Jo, and Ama planted when they were younger. I honestly don’t think I’ve ever read a novel that portrays the beauty and strength of friendship as well as Brashares does in 3 Willows.

Though I have never read any of Brashares’ novels, especially The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, I’m sure if those books are anything like 3 Willows, fans of Brashares will be eager to read this new one. Fans of other books touching on the bonds of friendship, such as Faking 19 by Alyson Noël, A Little Friendly Advice and Same Difference by Siobhan Vivian, and The Temptress Four by Gaby Triana, are sure to enjoy 3 Willows as well.

Rating: 4.25

Review copy from Amazon Vine

8 munch(es) :

stargirlreads said...

cant wait to read this :)

Genevieve said...

I reeeeally want to read this. : )

Bookworm said...

I started it and I agree about it being slow. But I'm excited about continuing--I loved the Sisterhood!

GreenBeanTeenQueen said...

I thought this one started slow too, but it grew on me. I liked the cameos by some of the Sisterhood characters too.

Angie said...

I'm going to add this book to my to-read list.

Sadako said...

I want to read this as well--I don't think I've heard of it before, and it sounds awesome.

Marg said...

I have this out from the library at the moment! I liked the Sisterhood books, but what I am most interested in is seeing if this is different from those books!

Ms. Yingling said...

I looked forward to this but was disappointed. I know my students will want it, but it was just warmed over Sisterhood, and I couldn't get into it.

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