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Book Reviews of The Night Sister

The Night Sister
The Night Sister
Author: Jennifer McMahon
ISBN-13: 9780385538510
ISBN-10: 0385538510
Publication Date: 8/4/2015
Pages: 336
Rating:
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 35

3.5 stars, based on 35 ratings
Publisher: Doubleday
Book Type: Hardcover
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

13 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

eadieburke avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 1612 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
Book Description
The latest novel from New York Times best-selling author Jennifer McMahon is an atmospheric, gripping, and suspenseful tale that probes the bond between sisters and the peril of keeping secrets.

Once the thriving attraction of rural Vermont, the Tower Motel now stands in disrepair, alive only in the memories of Amy, Piper, and Piper's kid sister, Margot. The three played there as girls until the day that their games uncovered something dark and twisted in the motel's past, something that ruined their friendship forever.
Now adult, Piper and Margot have tried to forget what they found that fateful summer, but their lives are upended when Piper receives a panicked midnight call from Margot, with news of a horrific crime for which Amy stands accused. Suddenly, Margot and Piper are forced to relive the time that they found the suitcase that once belonged to Silvie Slater, the aunt that Amy claimed had run away to Hollywood to live out her dream of becoming Hitchcock's next blonde bombshell leading lady. As Margot and Piper investigate, a cleverly woven plot unfolds--revealing the story of Sylvie and Rose, two other sisters who lived at the motel during its 1950s heyday. Each believed the other to be something truly monstrous, but only one carries the secret that would haunt the generations to come.

My Review
This was another excellent read from Jennifer McMahon. I have read all her books but I must say that this one is my favorite. I wouldn't say that it was too scary but it was very creepy. It is about family secrets with a paranormal twist. Her writing has a sinister feeling and she knows how to rev up the tension. I loved how she tied the story in with Alfred Hitchcock's movies and his visit to Vermont long ago. I am definitely looking forward to her next book and if you haven't read her books, you should put them on your list. You won't be disappointed.
RockStarGirl avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 329 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
The first thing that you should know about this book is that it is not just a mystery, but it contains supernatural elements. I didn't really realize that going in, so it kind of threw me for a loop towards the end.

Aside from that unexpected revelation, this is an excellent book. There are three points of time that the book switches between (the 50's/60's, 80's, and present day) and there are several different character POVs, which is a format that I love. The writing style is fabulous, and the characters are quite complex. I flew through this book, unable to put it down because it was so gripping.

I would have given it 5 stars if not for the unusual ending, which may extremely appealing to some. Strange ending or not though, it was a great read.
njmom3 avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 1361 more book reviews
I read The Night Sister because I enjoyed Jennifer McMahon's book The Winter People. So, comparisons are inevitable. This book unfortunately just does not come together in the same way. Alternating between three time periods, the book gives bits and pieces of each story until they all come together in a dramatic conclusion. The supernatural element is not as effectively handled; the book has some filler story points; and the ending is a letdown.

Read my complete review at: http://www.memoriesfrombooks.com/2015/09/the-night-sister.html
reviewed The Night Sister on + 11 more book reviews
Jennifer McMahon hardly ever disappoints--and this book is definitely no disappointment. One of my favorites of hers, as a matter of fact!
reviewed The Night Sister on + 1436 more book reviews
This author writes mysteries with a supernatural twist and this was my first read from her collection. If you are making a list to use for Halloween reads add this one. There are several gruesome murders and the only hints the reader gets are that the family has a curse and the murders look like an animal was involved. The photo on the dustcover is haunting giving proof to why the title was chosen.

The tale begins by describing the friendship of four girls, their adventures and relationships. Two are sisters, Sylvie and Rose. The third, Piper, lives nearby in a condo. Amy, whose parents own a motel, is the leader in all things. The others are followers who admire her. Like these young girls, Jason, who lives nearby idolizes Amy, collecting whatever she drops or loses and watches her whenever he can.

Fast forward into adult years when Amy, her husand, and son are killed in a bazaar manner. The reader discovers that the answers began years ago when all were young, roller skating and dreaming of the future.

The only survivor of Amy's family was Lou, the daughter. More people die in the fashion that Amy;s family died. If you like unusual mysteries with a twist this book may be your choice. For me, it was an okay read but I don't think I will pursue other mysteries in this series.
reviewed The Night Sister on + 1436 more book reviews
This author writes mysteries with a supernatural twist and this was my first read from her collection. If you are making a list to use for Halloween reads add this one. There are several gruesome murders and the only hints the reader gets are that the family has a curse and the murders look like an animal was involved. The photo on the dustcover is haunting giving proof to why the title was chosen.

The tale begins by describing the friendship of four girls, their adventures and relationships. Two are sisters, Sylvie and Rose. The third, Piper, lives nearby in a condo. Amy, whose parents own a motel, is the leader in all things. The others are followers who admire her. Like these young girls, Jason, who lives nearby idolizes Amy, collecting whatever she drops or loses and watches her whenever he can.

Fast forward into adult years when Amy, her husand, and son are killed in a bazaar manner. The reader discovers that the answers began years ago when all were young, roller skating and dreaming of the future.

The only survivor of Amy's family was Lou, the daughter. More people die in the fashion that Amy;s family died. If you like unusual mysteries with a twist this book may be your choice. For me, it was an okay read but I don't think I will pursue other mysteries in this series.
reviewed The Night Sister on + 8 more book reviews
It was slow reading, but a good book.
junie avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 630 more book reviews
Creepy, scary, hard to follow.
This book is not for me.
reviewed The Night Sister on + 3088 more book reviews
As they say---to each their own

I didn't like the writing style for this story, it was chopped up going from one time period to the past and back and forth it just make me confused and by page 150 you still don't even know what the story is supposed to be, so I'll say kudos to all these 5* reviews but my review is---boring, slow, confusing, draggy and writing style terrible

I've read a couple of others by McMahon and liked them but not this one!
susieqmillsacoustics avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 1062 more book reviews
Intense and really creepy! A unique tale of a family curse and secrets spanning generations. The tale is told in the present and the past and it is hard to put down!
reviewed The Night Sister on + 11 more book reviews
This is the first of Jennifer McMahon's books I've read. It kept me wanting to find out the truth. I didn't mind the back and forth between time periods. I think it helped give the reader the full story, from all perspectives.
kimberlyrav avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 417 more book reviews
Excellent book to read during summer vacay. Unique storyline, would have loved to have visited a tower of London in Vermont! Though it being a motel..now that was cool! Great characters and loved the mystery!
23dollars avatar reviewed The Night Sister on + 432 more book reviews
THE NIGHT SISTER is a creepy supernatural mystery that, while well written, isn't as equally well told. The story's full of contrived and forced plot points, with information being artificially withheld in order to set up convenient reveals later on.

I think the best stories work when you can't see the author in the narrative. Unfortunately, we can see the author in every shift of the timeline here, especially towards the end when the POVs change specifically to keep the reader in the dark to lengthen the story and prolong the mystery. It's contrived vs. clever, which means you feel little to no tension and aren't really invested enough to care as much as you should.

I also didn't connect with any of the characters or their relationships during any of the time periods. They all felt very much like stick figures, distantly strange and unrelatable, or just plain unlikeable; especially Amy, a character who was basically idolized by two of the others for no good reason whatsoever.

There was an Alfred Hitchcock/Hollywood theme included that felt like a waste since it was a focal point that basically went nowhere, ever so slowly.

The tone changes dramatically by the end, with a resolution that felt more like something you'd find in a comic book than a quality supernatural thriller. Perhaps they'll adapt this as a graphic novel? I think that would work really well!

So all in all, I give THE NIGHT SISTER a C+. I didn't enjoy it nearly as much as I did THE WINTER PEOPLE, which felt like a truly inspired and clever story verses one that's being forced together. I will still be on the look out for the author's next release because I do think her writing's still a cut above the average commercial fare.