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The Wednesday Sisters: A Novel by Meg Waite…
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The Wednesday Sisters: A Novel (edition 2008)

by Meg Waite Clayton

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80116811,418 (3.64)138
Member:DevourerOfBooks
Title:The Wednesday Sisters: A Novel
Authors:Meg Waite Clayton
Info:Ballantine Books (2008), Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Uncollected, Your library, To read
Rating:
Tags:LT-inspired, ER Title, fiction, ARC

Work details

The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton

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Showing 1-5 of 168 (next | show all)
When I was in college, I wrote a collection of short stories for my senior independent study thesis. I remember that the stories came to me hard and fast and I was not terribly popular amongst my friends when I admitted I was finished with the I.S. long before it was due (my college required this of everyone). Since that time though, really the only writing I've done has been here on the blog and I don't really consider myself a writer in the way that so many other people are writers. But that doesn't mean I haven't sometimes wanted to be a real writer, someone who is compelled to write, not someone who just tosses off a blog entry here or there when the spirit moves me. And then I remember how much work it is to write, rewrite, and revise, revise, revise. Sounds arduous and lonely, doesn't it? It isn't always though. Many writers have a writing group of some sort, a group of trusted readers and fellow writers who make their solitary work not so solitary and help them resolve problems and make their work shine. This is just the sort of group the main characters in Meg Waite Clayton's novel, The Wednesday Sisters, create.

It is the 1960s in Palo Alto, California and Frankie has just moved to town with her husband. In hopes of combatting her loneliness in this new place, she takes her kids to the local park looking to make friends with the group of women who appear there daily. The women are a varied bunch who initially come together at the playground over their children. There's Allie, Kath, Linda, and Brett. Though they are different politically and from different backgrounds, they become friends thanks to their shared love of books, meeting at the playground, getting together to watch the Miss America pageant, and even creating a writing group after Frankie suggests it, each of them working at her own pace towards writing a novel. The women become a tight group of friends who weather not only the amazing time in history they live through, but also the sorts of large and small events that fill each of their lives: divorce, infidelity, infertility, cancer, standing up to the prejudice against interracial marriage, deploring the lack of opportunity for women in athletics, and more. The Wednesday Sisters group is not just a writing critique group, they are a group of friends who are ready and waiting for the nascent move toward more options for women beyond simply being wives and mothers.

Clayton has created a lovely tale of female friendship and creativity peppered with the changing times of the sixties and the seventies. All of the women are forging new lives for themselves, stretching themselves beyond the expected roles imposed on them by society and their husbands. Each of the women is very distinctive as Frankie tells the story of the group through the years so that there's no confusion over which of the friends is the one around whom the group is rallying at any given point in the narrative. The characters seem to each represent a different aspect of feminism, which could be a bit clichéd, but the genuine, caring support system, one not without its clashes incidentally, they create for each other makes the portrayals feel more real than the stereotypes would suggest. The plot is evenly paced and while there's no real surprising climax, there doesn't necessarily need to be one. A heartwarming, nice tale, this is an ode to the importance of women's friendships and to nurturing creativity, over all a lovely and empowering novel. ( )
  whitreidtan | Dec 30, 2014 |
I really enjoyed this book and getting to know each of the characters, their relationships, and the struggles they had. The book made me laugh, made me cry, and made me think of the groups of friends I have and how important each of them are to me. ( )
  kim.jacobs | May 13, 2014 |
To use the author's words I think it was a little "familiar".

However, this made for great discussion in book club. The setting of the turbulent times and changing women's roles made interesting conversation between women who grew up in that era and younger ones. ( )
  FAR2MANYBOOKS | Apr 5, 2014 |
To use the author's words I think it was a little "familiar".

However, this made for great discussion in book club. The setting of the turbulent times and changing women's roles made interesting conversation between women who grew up in that era and younger ones. ( )
  FAR2MANYBOOKS | Apr 5, 2014 |
In 1967, on a Wednesday morning, five women meet each other in a park in San Francisco. They are watching their children play, discussing their husbands’ jobs, and talking about current events. As they share their daily lives and chat about what brought them to the city, they discover that although they have completely different backgrounds, they all have a something in common: the secret desire to become writers. Over the next decade: one of turmoil, historical firsts, and radical shifts in America, and in their own families, they continue meeting together and encouraging each other to write.

I loved this idea of showing what it was like to be a housewife, married to a soon-to-be successful husband in this era of free love, where women burned bras, and protest marches happened in the city. And there are the characters; each woman is so real that they seemed like personal friends. As a writer, I have been blessed by women like them, so for me, this story touched my heart. Also, Meg Waite Clayton perfectly hit on all the angst writers feel about their work and the publishing industry. This is the first book I’ve read of hers (found her on facebook) and I’m excited to see that there is a sequel called The Wednesday Daughters, which of course, are the children of the Wednesday Sisters. I’m recommending this to my writer friends—published or not—and to women, especially those who remember those not—so—long—ago days. I read this 5 star gem on Kindle. ( )
  PamelaBarrett | Oct 13, 2013 |
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Epigraph
Where there is great love, there are always miracles.

--Willa Cather, Death Comes for the Archbishop
Dedication
To Jenn, my Wednesday Sister, Brenda, my Tuesday one, Mac, my 24/7 everything,
and Chris and Nick, fine purveyors of tooth fairy magic and squid ink
First words
The Wednesday Sisters look like the kind of women who might meet at those fancy coffee shops on University—we do look that way—but we’re not one bit fancy, and we’re not sisters either.
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Book description
Meet Frankie, Linda, Kath, Brett, and Ally-five women who form a sisterlike bond in the summer of 1968 while tackling the ups and downs of life, love, marriage, and motherhood. As the nation watches a man circle the moon and witnesses the feminist protest at the Miss America Pageant, the Wednesday Sisters, as they come to call themselves, embrace their own wildest dreams-to become writers. A big-hearted literary feast with a few tears and many laughts, The Wednesday Sisters is a story of best friends, both those we met in real life and the ones we find in our favorite books. (back of book)
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0345502833, Paperback)

Five women, one passion, and the unbreakable bond of friendship

When five young mothers–Frankie, Linda, Kath, Ally, and Brett–first meet in a neighborhood park in the late 1960s, their conversations center on marriage, raising children, and a shared love of books. Then one evening, as they gather to watch the Miss America Pageant, Linda admits that she aspires to write a novel herself, and the Wednesday Sisters Writing Society is born. The five women slowly, and often reluctantly, start filling journals, sliding pages into typewriters, and sharing their work. In the process, they explore the changing world around them: the Vietnam War, the race to the moon, and a women’s movement that challenges everything they believe about themselves. At the same time, the friends carry one another through more personal changes–ones brought about by infidelity, longing, illness, failure, and success. With one another’s support and encouragement, the Wednesday Sisters begin to embrace who they are and what they hope to become, welcoming readers to experience, along with them, the power of dreaming big.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:23:10 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Five young California homemakers forge a bond of friendship that sustains them through the turbulent 1960s and beyond. Meeting weekly, the Wednesday Sisters share a love of writing, literary classics, and the Miss America Pageant--in a moving testament to the mysterious link between friends.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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