True Colors: Book Review by Arlene.
The Grey sisters have always been close. After their mother’s death, the girls banded together, becoming best friends. Their stern, disapproving father cares less about his children than about his reputation. To Henry Grey, appearances are everything, and years later, he still demands that his daughters reflect his standing in the community.
Winona, the oldest, needs her father’s approval most of all. An overweight bookworm who never felt at home on the sprawling horse ranch that has been in her family for three generations, she knows that she doesn’t have the qualities her father values. But as the best lawyer in town, she’s determined to someday find a way to prove her worth to him.
Aurora, the middle sister, is the family peacemaker. She brokers every dispute and tries to keep them all happy, even as she hides her own secret pain.
Vivi Ann is the undisputed star of the family. A stunningly beautiful dreamer with a heart as big as the ocean in front of her house, she is adored by all who know her. Everything comes easily for Vivi Ann, until a stranger comes to town. . . .
In a matter of moments, everything will change. The Grey sisters will be pitted against one another in ways that none could have imagined. Loyalties will be tested and secrets revealed, and a terrible, shocking crime will shatter both their family and their beloved town.
Synopsis from hardcover book, 393 pages, copyright 2009 and published by St. Martin’s Press.
This novel is absolutely all about family..as True Colors weaves itself through the lives of the main characters, and the people who are part of their lives, you will get to know them intimately. When you finish reading a Kristin Hannah novel, you absolutely will know and feel everything she must have felt and envisioned the story she wanted to write.
As Kate Jacobs, author of “The Friday Knitting Club” says on the cover of the book “Kristin Hannah delivers a captivating saga about the powerful bond between sisters, the tensions that can break a family and the healing effect of love…Brims with surprises and genuine insight. It’s a juicy, curl-up and savor it kind of book.”
I personally found these words to be very spot on and I truly ended up with tears in my eyes as I read the final pages of the novel. Kristin Hannah left me knowing these sisters and this family and when I found myself surprisingly on the last page, I said to myself it’s over…I did not even realize I finished the book…I did not want it to end. I felt like I knew and liked these people. I could feel their pain and happiness as I said good-bye on the last page.
The sisters are: Winona – The oldest, single, overweight, very smart, successful attorney. Aurora – The married, middle sister who is the family peace maker but dealing with her own personal issues. Vivi Ann – The youngest, single, strong willed and most beautiful who dreams of finding her place in the family and who finds her strength and where she truly belongs.
The Prologue takes place in 1979 the week of their mother’s death.
Chapter One opens the story in 1992.
I found myself thinking, as I got deeper into the first chapter of the book, “How do moments in time affect our lives? These moments we never forget and we remember them, sometimes at the most unexpected moments..sometimes wishing we could go back and change a decision we made at that moment in our lives.”
The prominent characters you will meet along the paths of the 3 sister’s lives are:
Luke Connelly – Winona’s high school friend who comes back to town a veterinary doctor.
Dallas Raintree – A Native American drifter looking for work as a ranch hand, horse trainer and caretaker hired by Winona to work and and live on the family ranch and property called Water’s Edge.
You will get to know the father of 3 sisters. He owns the land and property and the ranch and the horses. The head of the family who has his pride that gets in his way of ever really getting to know and show genuine love to his daughters. He is always worried about “what will people in town think and say” when something happens to his family.
Eventually Kristin Hannah brings into the story of this family Vivi Ann’s son Noah. In my opinion, Noah plays an intricate part of the story line to the family and how his relationship to this family comes to change the family dynamic for the better.
I was impressed by the insightful way Kristin Hannah introduces Noah’s thoughts about his family and his Dad Dallas and Noah’s first love Cissy. How Noah felt about being bullied in school because he was of Native American heritage and because his dad was accused of murder when Noah was much too young to remember anything about his dad.
The relationship between Noah and his aunt Winona plays a major role in how their relationship evolved throughout the book and how a single, crumpled dollar bill changes everything!!
I felt Kristin Hannah was able to reveal what true, loyal, deep romantic love is and how it makes 2 people feel and dedicate themselves to each other. I feel she really accomplished these feelings on the written page…powerful writing!!
As you read the book you will feel love, betrayal, honesty and emotional turmoil and what our human spirit goes through as we live our lives. These three sisters were as different as night and day and at the same time, their love..and sometimes hate…for each other comes through as you turn the pages….
I don’t have any sisters of my own and that being said, I have observed in my lifetime that there is really a strong bond between sisters….love and maybe jealousy and sometimes maybe how hate gets in the way of their love for each other.
I loved the picture of the three women walking toward the water on the cover of the paperback issue of this novel. I felt it portrays the three sisters perfectly at the end of the book.
In this book you will also see and feel the landscape of this property and ranch and the beloved horses Clementine and Renegade as they play a pivotal role in this story as well…
How do we show our “True Colors” to others as we go through our lives and do we tend to hide who we really are and what we really feel on the inside to please or impress others?
This novel has a lot of pages that will bring you inside the hearts and minds of the characters created by Kristin Hannah. Characters that could be anyone of us readers.
True Colors is a wonderful book. Kristin Hannah nails it every time!!
Belong to a book club? Check out True Colors book club discussion questions!