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The Sibling Effect: What the Bonds Among Brothers and Sisters Reveal About Us
     

The Sibling Effect: What the Bonds Among Brothers and Sisters Reveal About Us

3.5 11
by Jeffrey Kluger
 

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A senior writer at Time magazine explores what scientists and researchers are discovering about sibling bonds, the longest- lasting relationships we have in our lives.

Nobody affects us as deeply as our brothers and sisters-not parents, not children, not friends. From the time we-and they-are born, our siblings are our collaborators and

Overview

A senior writer at Time magazine explores what scientists and researchers are discovering about sibling bonds, the longest- lasting relationships we have in our lives.

Nobody affects us as deeply as our brothers and sisters-not parents, not children, not friends. From the time we-and they-are born, our siblings are our collaborators and co-conspirators, our role models and cautionary tales. They teach us how to resolve conflicts and how not to, how to conduct friendships and when to walk away. Our siblings are the only people we know who truly qualify as partners for life.

In this groundbreaking book, renowned science writer Jeffrey Kluger explores the complex world of siblings in a way that is equal parts science, psychology, sociology, and memoir. Based heavily on new and emerging research, The Sibling Effect examines birth order, twin studies, genetic encoding of behavioral traits, emotional disorders and their effects on-and effects from-sibling relationships, and much more.

With his signature insight and humor, Kluger takes big ideas about siblings and turns them into smart, accessible writing that will help anyone understand the importance of siblings in our lives.

Editorial Reviews

In some ways, our siblings are our only true partners for life. We grow up together; teach each other how to interact, fight, and resolve problems. They are role models, co-conspirators, competitors, monitors of our own behavior, and listening boards. Most of us are so close to our brothers and sisters that we never really contemplate the depth and breadth of our relationships. Fortunately, scientists have been watching us closely. In The Sibling Effect, Time senior writer Jeffrey Kluger lifts the curtain on what researchers have recently learned about the deep bonds between childhood playmates.

Library Journal
In a July 6, 2006, story, "The New Science of Siblings," Time senior writer Kluger noted that while scientists trying to figure out what really shapes us have hit successively on parents, genes, and peers, they felt that they were missing something. And "more and more, scientists are concluding that this unexplained force is our siblings." Here he expands on his research to show what our longest-lasting relationship means to us. Since we're always digging for personal insights, I'm betting this book will be very popular.
Kirkus Reviews

An in-depth exploration of the bonds between siblings and their surprisingly large influence on how we develop.

Time senior editor Kluger (Freedom Stone, 2011, etc.) has experienced myriad familial and sibling relationships in his life: son, brother, stepbrother, half brother and stepson, to name just a few. Using these often humorous, but sometimes dark, experiences as a handy framework, he first explains why human siblings are unique in the animal kingdom and why, in many cases, bonds between brothers and sisters are among the most important in their lives. Masterfully weaving anecdotal passages with academic research and scientific data, the author thoroughly examines the many manifestations of the simple brother-brother, sister-sister or brother-sister relationship, and the dynamic within each. Kluger devotes chapters to such major topics as the importance of birth order in a growing family, parental divorce and blended families (which become more prevalent each day), and what happens when a parent clearly favors a particular child. The author also touches on why siblings fight, how their risky behaviors may influence one another (hint: it's not always negatively), sex and gender and sibling relationships in old age. Kluger doesn't neglect the "curious worlds of twins and singletons"; they get a chapter all to themselves.

An entertaining, enlightening and helpful handbook for familial relations from an author who's been through them all.

From the Publisher
“Honest and vulnerable and caring.”—The Washington Post

“Addictively readable.”—Entertainment Weekly

“The science of siblings is well overdue for this kind of attention.”—The Boston Globe

“A page turner . . . a worthwhile read for anyone interested in human relationships.”—Associated Press

“Endlessly fascinating.”—Parent Magazine

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781594488313
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/15/2011
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
9.26(w) x 6.22(h) x 1.08(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Related Subjects

What People are Saying About This

Mary Pipher
“In The Sibling Effect, Jeffrey Kluger integrates the latest research and brings his own fresh thinking to an ancient topic: sibling relationships. He weaves his own sibling experiences into his rich, insightful text. Like all good storytellers, Kluger's stories are sad/happy and heartbreaking/glorious. The Sibling Effect is for anyone who has ever wondered, ‘Why can't I get along with my siblings?’ or ‘Why are we so different?’ or ‘How did my relationships with my siblings shape my personality?’ I suspect that is most of us." --(Mary Pipher, author of Reviving Ophelia)
Carl Zimmer
"In The Sibling Effect, Jeffry Kluger offers a thought-provoking exploration of the psychology of brothers and sisters, melded with a lovely reflection on his own family life. We all wonder in what ways our families have shaped us; Kluger lets us wonder far more deeply." --(Carl Zimmer, author of Soul Made Flesh and A Planet of Viruses.)
From the Publisher

"This book had a profound impact on me that I never could have anticipated. . . . It's a compelling and beautifully written story, interwoven with fascinating, cutting-edge research. What I didn't expect was what I'd learn about myself. In our culture we spend so much time examining the ways our parents influence us that we miss a force that's at least as significant. While immersed in The Sibling Effect, I went back in time, reexamined my own life, this time looking through a new lens. It was a revelation."
-David Sheff, author of Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through  His Son's Addiction

"Jeffrey Kluger integrates the latest research and brings his own fresh thinking to an ancient topic: sibling relationships. He weaves his own sibling experiences into his rich, insightful text. As with all good storytellers, Kluger's stories are sad/happy and heartbreaking/glorious. The Sibling Effect is for anyone who has ever wondered, 'Why can't I get along with my siblings?' or 'Why are we so different?' or 'How did my relationships with my siblings shape my personality?' I suspect that is most of us."
-Mary Pipher, author of Reviving Ophelia

David Sheff
“This book had a profound impact on me that I never could have anticipated…it’s a compelling and beautifully written story, interwoven with fascinating, cutting-edge research. What I didn’t expect was what I’d learn about myself. In our culture we spend so much time examining the ways our parents influence us that we miss a force that’s at least as significant. While immersed in The Sibling Effect I went back in time, re-examined my own life, this time looking through a new lens. It was a revelation.” --( David Sheff, author of Beautiful Boy: A Father’s Journey Through His Son’s Addiction)

Meet the Author

Jeffrey Kluger is a senior editor and writer at Time magazine. He is the coauthor of the bestseller Apollo 13, and the author of Simplexity, Splendid Solution, Moon Hunters, and two novels for young adults. He lives in New York City with his wife and daughters.

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The Sibling Effect: What the Bonds Among Brothers and Sisters Reveal About Us 3.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was very disappointed in this book. It seemed more like an extended magazine article, without any real depth or insight. If you've done any reading on the subject, you've probably already read most of what's in this book. I wouldn't recommend it.
countryboyMI More than 1 year ago
Extremely well written with much insight into sibling relationships. Fact filled along with many personal stories, some of which are rather entertaining as well. Allows the reader to think deeply about one's own siblings, and also those of one's children, grandchildren, etc., possibly helping you to modify such relationships for the better in the future...
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