Thursday, February 27, 2014

Review: Twisted Sisters

Summary: Reagan Bishop is a pusher. A licensed psychologist who stars on the Wendy Winsberg cable breakout show I Need a Push, Reagan helps participants become their best selves by urging them to overcome obstacles and change behaviors. An overachiever, Reagan is used to delivering results.

Despite her overwhelming professional success, Reagan never seems to earn her family’s respect. Her younger sister, Geri, is and always will be the Bishop family favorite. When a national network buys Reagan’s show, the pressures for unreasonably quick results and higher ratings mount. But Reagan’s a clinician, not a magician, and fears witnessing her own personal failings in prime time. (And seriously? Her family will never let her hear the end of it.) Desperate to make the show work and keep her family at bay, Reagan actually listens when the show’s New Age healer offers an unconventional solution…

Record Nielsen ratings follow. But when Reagan decides to use her newfound power to teach everyone a lesson about sibling rivalry, she’s the one who will be schooled… -- New American Library

I think I've mentioned a time or two that I'm just not reading at my normal pace. Although since this has been true for a few months now, I'm beginning to think this is my new normal! Rather than feel like reading is a chore, I decided to pick up a book that I knew would be fun -- TWISTED SISTERS by Jen Lancaster.

TWISTED SISTERS is about Reagan Bishop, a psychologist who stars in the cable reality show I Need a Push. She tries to help contestants face their fears and change their behavior. Reagan is a major perfectionist, both her job and personal life; and despite her successes, she feels as if her family doesn't understand or appreciate her.

When the show is purchased by a major network, Reagan finds that there are many changes to how she's been doing her job. The new team wants both faster results and higher ratings, and they are willing to sacrifice quality to achieve these things. Reagan fears that she can't be successful with this new formula so she turns to the show's New Age healer Deva to help her.

As Reagan faces pressure from all sides, she decides to take this opportunity to prove a thing or two to her boss and her family. However, Reagan realizes that she just might be the one who needs to learn a lesson about herself.

I've read a few reviews for TWISTED SISTERS that weren't exactly glowing. That's not to say that they weren't good. They just weren't stellar. I was actually a little surprised because I found this novel to be a lot of fun. Granted, it wasn't exactly literature and I had to let a few of my sensibilities go to believe the story; however, I thought it was cute... and I really liked how everything was eventually resolved. This novel most definitely entertained me!

Some of the characters in TWISTED SISTERS, namely Reagan, were a bit over-the-top. The story was told in Reagan's voice, and boy was she a piece of work! She was snobby, judgmental, and pretty darn unlikable for much of the novel; however, I did enjoy seeing her get her comeuppance. In fact, I actually ended up liking her character as she realized the error of her ways!

For those of you who have read anything written by Ms. Lancaster, then you already know that she's a very funny writer. Her humor was definitely evident in TWISTED SISTERS. Maybe it's because there's just the tiniest of me in Reagan, but I found some of her insight and reflections about people to be hilarious -- even though it usually wasn't very nice!

While I enjoyed the entire book, I found the ending to be especially good. I admit I was a little worried that it would be too predictable, but I actually found it to be satisfying. I don't want to say that this book was full of complex themes and messages; however, I did like the lessons that Reagan learned throughout the course of the story.

If you are looking for a light read that is guaranteed to make you laugh, then I suggest trying TWISTED SISTERS.

Thanks to the publisher for providing a review copy of this novel.


bermudaonion said...

I read Here I Go Again by Lancaster and thought it was very cute so I'm looking forward to this book. When I went to a lunch for Lancaster, I discovered that her memoirs have rabid fans and those rabid fans don't love her novels.

Beth Hoffman said...

I just finished reading Twisted Sisters, and your review is spot on, Julie. I laughed and enjoyed the story (a lot), and I even came to like Reagan.

ChaosIsAFriendOfMine said...

I LOVE Jen Lancaster and can't wait to read this book. I just bought it on Kindle today for $2.99. Thanks for the review!