Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants by Ann Brashares is a cute book about four friends who share a pair of jeans one summer, their first spent apart. One of the girls goes to Greece. Another goes to visit her father. A third goes to soccer camp. The fourth stays home, working a typically demeaning summer job. Ultimately, the novel is typical chick lit. There are so many predictable moments that only someone who hasn’t read many books could find the plot points surprising. Fortunately, this is a young adult novel so odds are the readership hasn't been overly exposed to predictable plot points. In some ways, it seems to be a sort of coming-of-age but the feeling that there is more story to tell is evident even when the summer has come to a logical (and obvious) conclusion. In other words, this book screams "There's a sequel coming!" Sweet without being cloying, slightly sentimental and unsurprising, it is one of those perfect quick summer reads, a bit of mental fluff that feels like a warm fuzzy hug when the last page is turned. Will I read the sequel? I don’t know. I’m tempted but I doubt it would be even as slightly satisfying as this first novel. This one was fulfilling in the way fast food can curb your hunger but doesn’t necessarily provide nutrition. In this case, what we have here is a cute young adult novel that doesn’t give the reader much food for thought.

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