20 June 2008

Just finished reading...

Three girls and their brother by Theresa Rebeck.

Theresa Rebeck's first novel is amazing. In a good way.

The three sisters of the title are Amelia, Polly, and Daria Heller (respectively 14, 17 and 18 at the beginning of the story). The brother is Philip, a year older than Amelia. Their grandfather, Leo Heller, was a well-known literary critic.

What's significant about the sisters, though, is their beauty and their hair. All three have stunning red hair. Out of the blue, The New Yorker calls, saying they'd like to do a photo spread of the girls by a world-famous photographer. Although Amelia is reluctant, Daria has had her sights set on a modelling career, and convinces her to agree. In no time at all, the Heller's have become the new "It" girls.

The novel is broken into four parts, each narrated by one of the siblings. The first voice is Philip's. His tale begins with The New Yorker's invitation, and continues until Amelia is asked to leave her school because the paparazzi who follow her create too much of a disturbance. The narrative is then picked up by Amelia, who tells what happens for the next few months, followed by Polly and then Daria.

Rebeck inhabits each of the very different characters quite effectively, and their separate viewpoints are believable. Telling the story this way makes the wild ride credible, although after I finished the book and thought about it I realized just how outlandish some of the situations really are.

Great book! I have a feeling this will win some awards.

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