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Customer Reviews for

While My Sister Sleeps

Average Rating 4
( 96 )
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5 Star

(40)

4 Star

(23)

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(15)

2 Star

(10)

1 Star

(8)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

While My Sister Sleeps

I enjoyed this story on so many levels. It is a great story that shows family dynamics in calm and stressful situations.
The book opens with us meeting the Snow sisters. Robin is the "star". A top runner, she is preparing for an Olympic trial. Molly is the "good girl" ...
I enjoyed this story on so many levels. It is a great story that shows family dynamics in calm and stressful situations.
The book opens with us meeting the Snow sisters. Robin is the "star". A top runner, she is preparing for an Olympic trial. Molly is the "good girl" who provides support work for the family. She cleans up for Robin and works behind the scenes at the family business.
When Robin has a heart attack, we see how the family that has revolved around her handles their beloved star being extinguished. Relationships are strained and the family has to accept and learn to cope without her and realize that their perceptions of Robin, themselves and each other need to be corrected. They need to let go of many things.

posted by Maria_of_amor on September 12, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

Not One of This Author's Best

I just finished this book, and I cannot believe it is written by the same author who gave us such treasures as Coast Road and Three Wishes. What a dissapointment. I did not find the conversations that took place between the characters realistic - they made me think if...
I just finished this book, and I cannot believe it is written by the same author who gave us such treasures as Coast Road and Three Wishes. What a dissapointment. I did not find the conversations that took place between the characters realistic - they made me think if I was watching this on TV it would be poorly written script. I did not like all the stories interwoven, perhaps only one interwoven story could have been done with the relationship between Nick and Molly, after he and Robin broke up. The writing style was simple at best. I love most of her books, but wish I would have borrowed this one from the library instead of purchasing it.

posted by LoveToReadinVT on February 23, 2009

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  • Posted September 12, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    While My Sister Sleeps

    I enjoyed this story on so many levels. It is a great story that shows family dynamics in calm and stressful situations.
    The book opens with us meeting the Snow sisters. Robin is the "star". A top runner, she is preparing for an Olympic trial. Molly is the "good girl" who provides support work for the family. She cleans up for Robin and works behind the scenes at the family business.
    When Robin has a heart attack, we see how the family that has revolved around her handles their beloved star being extinguished. Relationships are strained and the family has to accept and learn to cope without her and realize that their perceptions of Robin, themselves and each other need to be corrected. They need to let go of many things.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 23, 2009

    Not One of This Author's Best

    I just finished this book, and I cannot believe it is written by the same author who gave us such treasures as Coast Road and Three Wishes. What a dissapointment. I did not find the conversations that took place between the characters realistic - they made me think if I was watching this on TV it would be poorly written script. I did not like all the stories interwoven, perhaps only one interwoven story could have been done with the relationship between Nick and Molly, after he and Robin broke up. The writing style was simple at best. I love most of her books, but wish I would have borrowed this one from the library instead of purchasing it.

    7 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    Fans of Barbara Delinsky will enjoy this angst-laden character driven family drama

    Olympic level marathoner egotistical Robin Snow and her less athletic younger sister Molly the horticulturist do not get along for the most part though they share a sisterly bond especially when things go bad for one of them. Molly resents her older sibling¿s fame and accompanied gloating haughtiness so refuses to run with Robin as she trains. When Robin running alone suffers a heart attack that leaves her comatose, Molly feels guilty for not being there for her.<BR/><BR/>As Robin's health worsens, Molly¿s feelings of guilt rise in a negative correlation. Other family members like their brother Chris and their parents Charlie and Kathryn fail to cope with the increasingly ominous situation; Chris has a personal problem while Kathryn is in denial and Charlie turns to religion. Thus every critical decision falls on Molly¿s overly burdened shoulders as the doctor begins to believe Robin will never wake up.<BR/><BR/>Fans of Barbara Delinsky will enjoy this angst-laden character driven family drama that looks deep into relationships mostly between siblings. Although the well written story line is extremely passive (which makes sense since one of the key characters is in a coma) and at times over burdened with too much personal torment that borders on hyperbolic emoting, WHILE MY SISTER SLEEPS deeply showcases how people react differently to an unexpected health crisis. <BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 17, 2011

    excellent

    this book kept me reading all night because it deals with the universal issue of sibling rivalry in a unique and complex way.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    While My Sister Sleeps

    This book had a lot of good points to it. Don't leave without telling your loved ones I love you or a grudge, what happens when you are a doner, the love of a family, journalism, etc. I give this book two thumbs up! It was sad, but you received a lot of loving, encouraging, caring, what if's education. I'd read this book again.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 16, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Heartwarming and Beautifully Written!

    Goodness, I had thought this book sounded so good when I read about it. So I contacted the author to see if she'd be kind enough to send me a copy. I have to say that this book is the most amazing book. It's going on my list of favorite books of all time! While the premise of the story is one we've heard before, I could never have imagined the depths that it would uncover. The emotions that it evokes are complex and will have you really feeling a bit raw. All of us have wondered at one time or another how we'd handle this type of tragedy in our family, which is why I'm sure this story will resonate so strongly with everyone who reads it. The struggles this family goes through as they accept what they have to do, and then actually doing it, is heartbreaking. But Barbara Delinsky doesn't stop with just that. We get an intimate look into the relationship of daughters and mothers, and two sisters, and husbands and wives. The layers that are peeled away little by little just make the story that much more intense. It makes you wonder if you know your family as well as you think you do. I have to admit that I was in tears at more than one point in the book. This book is being released today...and my recommendation is that you run out and get it...NOW! Obviously I loved this book.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 26, 2010

    Fairly Good, but not too Original

    It was good. Very good. The synopsis and cover got me. Though it did have it's ups and downs. Let's break it down:

    The plot: it wasn't original, but since i have recently been hooked on sob stories like this; it grabbed me. But again,you do often either, hear or read a book on how the main characters' sister dies. And, it may not have been original, but it was good.

    The characters: You will fall in love with the characters, at one point or another, and that is a promise. I read the reviews on the front of the book and everyone had pointed out something similar to :"She will make you feel like the characters are your next door neighbors!" And as i read along, that hadn't been true for me. It took till the 2nd half of the book for it too kick in. I wish it had been sooner, because the characters are truly one of a kind, but still your everyday people. Some of the characters, i loved, and others i hated. But for stupid things, like Mollys' brother's wife. She was mad at him and wanted to get a divorce, because he wouldn't talk all that much. I kept thinking that she needed to get real, because that is no reason to do that and people have much better reasons to do so, than because one of them doesn't talk as much as you want. But again, that's kind of a silly thing. I doubt anyone else would be that bothered by her, that they would hate the entire book. Everyone else, i really did have a connection too, and you will as well.
    The perspective: I loved how the author kept changing the characters perspective and point of view so i could get a glimpse of each person's view on things.

    Other silly things that i LIKE: That i connected straight away with how Molly felt towards her sister. So at the same time, i had bonded with Robin as well. And i like the unexpected twist in the middle of the book.

    Other silly things that i DISLIKE: That Molly's profession was working with plants: i felt that the author went a little overboard with describing the plants because i really didn't care. And another thing: Molly's love interest. I fell in love with him as well, but the author never got farther than a good conversation between them. But in a way, i liked that as well, because i got to imagine what happened to them. And that gave the author the chance, not to go overboard,where we start to dislike both the characters; like many authors do when it comes the relationships.

    Overall, this was a moderately, well shaped book. I think i would only recommend it to someone who has a sister as well, only because there would be no connections and interest for someone who is either an only child or doesn't have a sister.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 30, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Tugs at your heart strings

    While My Sister Sleeps,is a truly touching, heartbreaking story. Those of us who have siblings will be amused and touched by the dynamics and interactions of the characters, as Delkinsky mixes the dynamics of the brother and sisters. While the end is inevitable, the readers heart breaks as each characacter struggles with the decisions and effects. Definitely a tear jerker, but worth the read.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Beautifully written story of a tragedy in the life of a family

    I've been a fan of Ms. Delinsky since reading my first book of hers. While I wouldn't have chosen to read a book on this subject matter, the fact that she was the author overcame my doubts. So glad it did, as this was an extraordinary story of the love of a family during a time of crisis. Character development was wonderful.....I felt like I was an integral part of this family. It was a very sad tale, yet never written in a maudlin manner but taking the reader through a difficult journey in a sad, yet comforting manner. I very strongly recommend it to everyone.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2009

    While My Sister Sleeps

    A very touching book. It is a good one for rainy days or a lazy day in.
    Easy reading.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 25, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Life Support vs. Dying with dignity

    Young, supposedly heathy runner falls unconscious on street and is taken to hospital because of a good samaritan. Younger sister who was supposed to monitor her running for a marathon race, refused to go and gets a call that her sister collapsed on the street and she must come to the hospital immediately. The younger sister calls her brother who then calls his parents who are on their way home from the airport as they'd been on a trip. Their sister is unconscious, in a coma from a massive heart attack and is possibly brain dead. How did this happen to an otherwise healthy girl? How each member of the family deals with this, what they learn about themselves and each other and how they each cope with the decision of whether to keep their sister on life support or to pull the plug makes for an awesome character study and deep involvement of the reader who is so drawn into this story. I couldn't put this book down. It was so reminiscent of the type of story that Jodi Picoult would write. I highly recommend this book. It's the book that our local library book club will be discussing this May, 2010. I am truly looking forward to that book discussion.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Loved the Story!

    I read this book in two days. I will admit that it was Spring Break and I was on the beach. It is my first novel by this author and it was a winner. The story is well written, the charcters are flawed but still likable. The story is detailed enough that you can relate to all the family drama, secrets, and misunderstandings that take place. There is a little of everything going on in this story but it reamins easy to follow. The crisis brings the family together and tears apart the foundation that thought they stood on. I highly recommend this book. It would be a great book club selection, too.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Okay

    Even though the story is based around a sister in a coma, Delinsky came up short when trying to draw an emotional reaction out of me. I love my sisters and would be in tears if this happened to one of them, but I didn't feel the heart-wrenching agony with this book. It was a good read but not a great one. I almost put it down when a twist came in the middle of the book which kept me reading and I enjoyed the change in direction from then on. I didn't like all the whining that dragged on in the first half of the book.The sisterly tension didn't need half the book to depict the friction, a couple of chapters would have suffice.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2009

    Very Moving

    This book I read for a book group which meets this Sunday. I found it a deep character study into the position of family members in a crisis situation. It gave a accurate profile of how each member reacts and has different relationship with each other. A crisis doesn't always bring out the best in people and this story was right on the mark. Should make for good discussions at my book group

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 13, 2009

    Another haunting topic wrapped into a beautiful story..

    Barbara Delinsky has shown me once again why I will always place her at the top of my favorite authors list: she is never afraid to delve into significant research to provide insight into a thought-provoking topic. With "While My Sister Sleeps" she examines the interpersonal dynamics of the Snow family and how these dynamics have been touched by the tragedy of the eldest child's accident. Through this event this seemingly close-knit family finds out that they not only do not know the daughter that lay in the hospital bed, but also each other.

    The only complaint, and a minor one at that, is that the topic of potential organ donation, if necessary, seems a little bit "forced" on one occasion. But for me that was easily overlooked for the more haunting and emotional moments.. and an overall topic that made me think of what I would do in such an event.

    Highly recommended book.. not only for those that are current fans of Ms. Delinsky. I invite anyone to examine the entire library of her works.. you will not be disappointed!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A poignant story

    While my sister sleeps is an emotional roller coater, a family in turmoil with a decision to make that no one should ever have to and as a result how this family grows as individuals and as a unit from this life changing event in their lives.
    Barbara Delinsky is a wonderful storyteller as you will see in this novel, her characters are beautifully developed and entwined expertly with each other in the book. The writing is the best I've read and the plot is intriguing and haunting. It's a story that you'll have a hard time putting down once you start. Keep the tissues handy for this one.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 7, 2010

    Excellent Book

    I wasn't sure I was going to like this book, but I found it to be a very powerful book about a timely and contemporary subject. I was sorry to reach the end of it, and it's in my permanent archives.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2010

    Esh!

    I was so bored I stopped reading this book.
    I do not have a sister,but thought it never moved and many parts of it were not of interest to me. I read a book a week and this was not for me.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2010

    While My Sister Sleeps

    An excellent story of all levels of family dynamics. Deep secrets kept, with only the best of intentions. It was a rare look into a family that really thought they knew each other, but didn't know each other at all. A great lesson in being open, honest and trusting with loved ones. Wonderfully masterful plot.... even though you think you know the story in the first few pages and wonder what could possibly fill the rest of the book. Then came the surprises.

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  • Posted April 18, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Sad topic

    While the topic is sad, the material was presented well. Characters were well developed and subject matter was easily discussable. Not a major work of literature, but a nice book.

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