Sunday, April 28, 2013

Three Sisters by Susan Mallery ~ Review + Giveaway

Genre: Women's Fiction
Series: Blackberry Island #2
Publication Date: 26th February 2013
Pages: 307
Book Source: Thanks to Harlequin Mira

Synopsis: After Andi Gordon is jilted at the altar, she makes the most impetuous decision of her life – buying one of the famed Three Sisters Queen Anne houses on Blackberry Island. Now the proud-ish owner of the ugly duckling of the trio, she plans to open her own pediatric office on the first floor, just as soon as her hunky contractor completes the work. Andi's new future may be coming together, but the truth is she's just as badly in need of a major renovation as her house. 

When Deanna Phillips confronts her husband about a suspected affair, she opens up a Pandora's Box of unhappiness. And he claims that she is the problem. The terrible thing is, he's right. In her quest to be the perfect woman, she's lost herself, and she's in danger of losing her entire family if things don't change. 

Next door, artist Boston King thought she and her college sweetheart would be married forever. Their passion for one other has always seemed indestructible. But after tragedy tears them apart, she's not so sure. Now it's time for them to move forward, with or without one another. 

Thrown together by fate and geography, and bound by the strongest of friendships, these three women will discover what they're really made of: laughter, tears, love and all.

My Thoughts:
I laughed, I cried, I loved it! After enjoying Barefoot Season I was surprised to be drawn so quickly to new characters but Three Sisters is an emotional story I immediately connected with. Really shouldn't have come as a surprise, Mallery's poignant writing - real women with heartaches, insecurities, strengths and flaws and I identified in some way with each of them.

Andi - seeking a fresh start on Blackberry Island but toting baggage. She buys the run-down middle house of the well known Three Sisters Queen Anne houses. 

Deanna - brittle, controlling, bitchy but when she cracks and reveals her vulnerabilities I just wanted to give her a hug. 

Boston - drowning in the pain of her baby son's death, Boston's story brought me to tears more than once, close to home and my own heart.

The strength and security that true friendship brings is a beautiful thing, I loved the interaction between Andi, Boston and Deanna and their honesty. 

"Don't take this wrong, but I really didn't like you much when I first met you."
"Don't worry about it, no one does."
"But you're really nice and funny."
"Maybe you could write a letter of recommendation to my family."

Andi drew back and Boston took her place. Her touch was less sure, but no less comforting. "I'm here too," her neighbour said. "For you and for Andi. It's really okay you're a bitch. You're a good bitch."

I kind of wish I lived next door, I'd fit right in, we would have been friends. 

And just in case you're wondering, Three Sisters is book 2 in the Blackberry Island series but it can definitely be read as a stand-a-lone. The connection is only loose but late in the novel there's a little update on Michelle and Carly and the Blackberry Island Inn from Barefoot Season and of course more recipes.

Recommend: Without hesitation

Grilled Chicken Sandwich with Blackberry Relish
photo courtesy: Blackberry Island Website
recipe available here

Blackberry Relish:
1 cup blackberries, chopped (frozen blackberries are fine, but thaw first)
1/2 cup green onions, sliced
1 small can of mild chili peppers, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
2 tblsp balsamic vinegar

For the sandwiches:
boneless, skinless chicken breasts
black pepper
provolene cheese

Mix together all the relish ingredients and set aside. This can be done the day before. 
Grill the chicken until cooked through. Add provolone cheese so that it melts on each chicken breast. Assemble sandwich and carefully spoon a couple of tablespoons of relish on top of each. 

Find Susan Mallory on her Website, Facebook or Twitter

GIVEAWAY: I just happen to have a spare copy thanks to the generosity of the folk at Harlequin and ARRC. 1 paperback copy Australia Only (sorry international peeps) 
Just let me know when you comment that you'd like to be in the running. 

Extra Entries: 
+ 2 tweet giveaway and leave a link

Giveaway ends 12th May and winner will be announced on my blog. Good luck!

Weekend Cooking is hosted by Beth Fish Reads and open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs.


  1. Ohhhhhhhh I am adding this to my list!!! Sounds great!!

  2. That sounds like a book I'd enjoy...thanks for the opportunity:)

  3. Blackberry relish? That sounds so good. Now I have to wait a few months until the ones in yard are ready to pick.

  4. A new one for me. Entering with a VIC address. Am back in Melbourne next month!!!

  5. The book sounds like fun, and I love the idea of blackberry relish!

  6. Wow that sounds incredible! Would it make a good book club book?

    1. Sheila, oh YES it would be an ideal book club read, it actually has discussion questions at the back, along with recipes and the recipes in the first book were great too!

  7. That relish looks amazing, thanks for sharing it.

  8. I bought this and can't wait to read it after reading your review!

  9. This looks like a great read - I usually read more genre type fiction but love your review and I'm going to keep my eye out for this one. And the recipe looks delicious!

  10. I am going to have to check this out. I saw it on the Amazon Vine newsletter but wasn't sure if I'd like it so I didn't request it. Now I wish I had :(

    I am sure my library has a copy and if we don't, I will be ordering one so I (and the library patrons of course) can read it. I like books with strong friendship stories and this sounds right up my alley. Great review!

  11. The recipe I'll keep! The book I won't don't want to cry:) It does sound good though.

  12. Hi Sheree,

    Thanks so much for visiting Fiction Books earlier today. I love 'meeting' new people, so your visits will always be welcome and your comments always appreciated.

    This is a new to me author, however I was intrigued enough by this book to check her out a little. I am not sure that I would like all of the stuff she has written, however I shall be adding the 'Blackberry Islands' books to my wish list.

    I wasn't too struck by some of the blackberry recipes either, although I did like the sound of the 'peanut butter and blackberry jam pie'. I do like to try out recipes with flavours that you wouldn't necessarily think belonged together and this combination sounds intriguing.

    Great post and review, thanks for sharing and recommending this one.


  13. Oh I wanna read this now! Seeing as you're on a Susan Mallery reading kick, I'm going to assume she has a great writing style as well as nice story ideas! Some of my favourite meals come from books, including peanut butter and apple sandwhiches, lol. :-)

  14. This sounds like a great read, definately on my TBR list after reading your review. Thanks for the giveaway :-)

  15. Thanks for this lovely giveaway. Ideal. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  16. Love to read this as an escape. many thanks. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  17. Wow this one looks great - definitely adding it to my TBR list! Thanks for the awesome giveaway!
    amyrenae88 (at) hotmail (dot) com

  18. Yes please!!!

    I must say I'm rather taken with the Blackberry Relish too.


  19. You had me at "island." There's nothing I enjoy more than an island retreat, and when I can't go to one, I love living on one vicariously in my reads. Great review...and that sandwich makes me hungry!

  20. would love to win the book.i even tweeted about the giveaway!

  21. Thanks for taking the time to review THREE SISTERS! I'm Susan's assistant, and I've posted a review quote to her website, with a link back to your blog. :) You can see the quote and link at

  22. Already on my TBR list! And the blackberry relish sounds yummy.

  23. Not only do I want that sandwich but I now must read both of these books!!! You're so very naughty!!! Love it!

  24. I need to read the first one because every review of this one I've read has made me want it. And I can't read them out of order, it's a disease I have.

  25. oh i'd love to win! Sounds very interesting. I also tweeted the giveaway


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