Thursday, January 15, 2009

New This Week: 3 Willows by Ann Brashares

It’s hard to take a book like 3 Willows (Delacorte) seriously. Not with a pedigree like this one. And not when it’s fallen off such a familiar tree.

Author Ann Brashares is the author of the mega-selling Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants books. The books have sold nine million copies and inspired a couple of movies. Read that: they’ve been super popular. And while fans seem fully prepared to love whatever Brashares thinks to follow them up with, it’s difficult to not wonder why she’s opted to follow such a familiar road.

At 14 Polly, Joe and Ama -- the girls in 3 Willows -- are younger than their Sisterhood counterparts, but one could argue that could just give them the opportunity to grow through more books before the author has no choice but to be done with them. Their adventure and their spirit here is not terribly different, either: they even live in the same time and have a pair of shared jeans.

That said, these three girls have their own personalities and their own problems and challenges: 3 Willows really is more than The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants recast. Readers who loved the Pants books will eat 3 Willows right up.

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