Monday, November 5, 2007

Summer Sisters by Judy Blume

Title: Summer Sisters
Author: Judy Blume

ISBN: 0440226430

Publisher: Dell Publishing/1998

Pages: 399/Fiction

The story opens with a phone call from Caitlin asking Vix if she would be the maid of honour at her wedding. Then the story goes back to Vix and Caitlin's summer days, and all the events leading up to Caitlin's Marriage.

Vix is a shy and reserved girl, while Caitlin loves to be the centre of attention. Each summer, they return to Martha’s Vineyard, growing closer and they eventually call themselves summer sisters. The first real conflict between them comes up that summer, when they are seventeen. They are both at the beach with their boyfriends having a great time, but it takes a turn for the worse when something happens. Vix moves in life getting educated in Harvard until she gets that phone call from Caitlin.
Older and wiser, Vix discovers some things about Caitlin which she had not been able to see before. A few things are revelations for her. Their friendship is mended. However, they lose that closeness they had shared in their childhood years.

I found it very hard to like the characters. Caitlin is very selfish and does not even try to improve herself. Victoria too is not much better. She just does not seem to have any personality of her own. She is blindly loyal to Caitlin. With selfishness on one’s part and naivety on the other’s this friendship looked more like dysfunction to me.

In addition, there was excessive sex in this novel. Although this is pegged as a story about friendship, both girls seem unhealthily focused on sex. In the latter half of the novel, a sex scene was in nearly every chapter when it was not needed at all.

The only thing that slightly redeems this book is the interesting perspective from secondary characters. I continued reading it because I thought at some point someone would become a mature, interesting, and inspiring character, but unfortunately, that does not happen. Judy Blume might be a good writer for some but for me; I will not read any other book by her.

#Update: It is the same person who writes kid's fiction.