THE SISTER ACT by Blossom Elfman


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Narrating this girl's guide to vipers and cuckoos in the family nest is 18-year-old Molly, Momma's ""brilliant"" gem, who admits she's not everyone's cup of tea. But she is artist Jason's, and she lives with him while Jason, with accelerating determination, attempts to pry Molly away permanently from Momma (eerily effective in her clammy campaign to freeze the status quo) and from Momma's other gem, 16-year-old Shera--who's gorgeous and ""won't lift a finger to pass tenth grade."" Molly does want out, even refuses to read Little Women again to Shera (curled on her bed of dolls, sucking candy), but Shera is full of surprises that require Molly's attention: little sister sleeps around, acquires a husband and baby (one way to escape English II), and loses both when they get in her way, which seems to be the red-carpeted path back home to Momma. Each screaming Shera-crisis--from hospital to family court--jerks Molly back to Mothersville until she discovers that sisterly love is a one-way street. So, she boards the freedom express--to Jason and then beyond to be alone in a ""world that flows with light and energy."" Momma and her private soothsayer, a neighboring Tarot ace, contribute background slapstick, but it is Shem, the Baby Huey of greed, who wings it beyond caricature. Despite relentlessly jejeune patter that tilts this more to soap than significance--it's an easy act to swallow.

Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1978
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin