A Sister’s Gift
Two sisters. Best of friends. Worst of enemies. The stunning novel from the English Jodi Picoult.
Hollie Hudson and her husband Richard are fast losing hope of ever having their own child.
But Hollie is unable to give up her dream of having her own family and so calls on her last chance – her wayward sister, Scarlett. A 24-year-old blonde bombshell, she is the antithesis of her darker, more reserved older sister but capable of giving Hollie the miracle she so desperately wishes for.
Having almost single-handedly brought Scarlett up after their runaway mother abandoned them, Scarlett knows she owes Hollie everything – and now it’s time to pay her back with the ultimate gift… Plus she has an ulterior motive.
Back from the Amazon where she’s been working with endangered species and threatened tribes, Scarlett finds being back home difficult. Especially as the past – and past feelings – come back to haunt her.
Meanwhile, an ever-desperate Hollie is faced with the decision of a lifetime if she’s ever to get the baby she wants, but just how much is she willing to put at stake?
Find out more in this mesmerising and heartbreaking tale from a stunning British talent about sacrifice, sisterhood, long-held secrets and dangerous desires.
When Hollie’s free-spirited sister Scarlett agrees to be a surrogate for her, it seems like Hollie and her husband will finally get the child they’ve always wanted. But when it comes to family nothing is ever straightforward – and Hollie’s obsessiveness teamed with Scarlett’s lies soon threaten to shatter all of their lives.
To begin with, I found the book quite slow going – nothing really happens, except the fact that Green really hammers into the reader just how desperately Hollie wants a baby and just how much Scarlett loves her job. I felt this to be a little unnecessary and repetitive, and I failed to really connect with the book or the characters at this point.
Later in the book, Hollie comes up with a plan that has caused controversy among some readers. Personally I didn’t have a problem with this part of the plot; in fact I was grateful for something to be finally happening, and I felt that it much better portrayed Hollie’s desperation than the previous pages had. It also starts to open up the characters’ pasts, which added more depth to the novel as the reasons for Scarlett and Hollie’s behaviour is slowly revealed throughout the rest of the book.
The ending is somewhat ambiguous and could have been developed more, perhaps in place of the book’s slower start, but it wasn’t the worst ending.
A Sister’s Gift had lots of ups and down. It really started to pick up halfway through, and the controversial plotline had me hooked and wanting to know more. For this it’s worth a read, but I still believe the book would have benefited from a snappier start and an ending that wasn’t quite as abrupt.