The Favorite Sister by Jessica Knoll
Continuing on with my summer book review catch up - The Favorite Sister by @jessicaknollauthor - OH YES GIVE HER THE STARS ⭐️✨
This is one of those suck-you-in-oh-my-god-I-hope-it-never-ends books. I was ABSORBED into this story, I dreamt about it, and I thought about it endlessly. The story follows a group of women who are millennial entrepreneurs on a reality tv show, including two sisters, Kelly & Brett. Going in, you know Brett is dead and someone is responsible - but you don’t know what kind of rollercoaster drama you are about to dive headfirst into.
I loved everything about this book - the dark, twisting plot, the manipulative characters, the completely believable premise of the show itself. Everything in this book clicks to make you fall right into the drama, I was legitimately bummed this isn’t an actual show because I finished this book and wanted MORE.
But most importantly- let’s talk about how Jessica Knoll is a MARVEL at how she writes women - legitimate, honest, complex women who exist out there. Women who make mistakes, screw up royally, have broken relationships, love their bodies, hate their bodies, want to be mothers, want to be businesswomen, have no idea what they are doing, are killing it. How she writes is beyond real - no cramming women in their cleaned up boxes of “good wife”, “mother”, “cool girl”, “hardass”, “feminist”. She makes her characters as messy and terrific and twisted as real life. She lets them live in the grey area and THAT is why I will read anything Jessica writes. Because it is refreshing as hell to see that complexity on the pages - we’ve all seen it, lived it, done it, know it.
I wish more authors wrote women this way - in a way that is reflective of the genuine nature that not everything in life is black and white, and that people can be good and bad. I found these characters, even in their most despicable actions, so relatable and I had so much empathy for them - BECAUSE I felt like they were these real people who existed out there, scraping to climb the ladder.
I also LOVE how this book is an honest reflection of the socially constructed version of sisterhood, feminism, having a squad/tribe, and women supporting women versus the sometimes reality of it. It is true - for every strong group of women who really are out there supporting one another and loving one another, there are also situations, people and constructs that are dead set in place to continue to try to pit those strong women against each other - whether they want to be pitted or not. To pretend that this no longer exists in our world is doing a complete disservice to women - it is happening and does happen. And only by recognizing it, and deconstructing it can we get to a place where it doesn't exist. Jessica is remarkable for shining this light directly onto the conversation - that microscope that breaks down the shiny exterior of these dirty little games. I want more of this - more of the honesty that leads to conversation.
So friends, get a cocktail, get this book and let this be one of your perfect summer reads. I can’t wait to talk to you about it.