While My Sister Sleeps: Book summary and reviews of While My Sister Sleeps by Barbara Delinsky

While My Sister Sleeps

by Barbara Delinsky

While My Sister Sleeps
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  • Published in USA  Feb 2009
    336 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

Once again Barbara Delinsky brings us a masterful family portrait, filled with thought-provoking ideas about the nature of life itself, how emotions affect the decisions we make, and how letting go can be the hardest thing to do and the greatest expression of love all at the same time.

Molly and Robin Snow are sisters in the prime of their lives. So when Molly learns that Robin—an Olympic athlete and the favorite child—has suffered a massive heart attack, the news couldn’t be more shocking. At the hospital, the Snow family receives a grim prognosis: Robin may never regain consciousness.

Feelings of guilt and jealousy flare up as Robin's family struggles to cope and their relationships are put to the ultimate test. It’s up to Molly to make the tough decisions, and she soon makes discoveries that destroy some of her most cherished beliefs about the sister she thought she knew.

Read an interview with Barbara about While My Sister Sleeps.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Despite somewhat stilted writing, Delinsky’s popularity should ensure demand for this engaging exploration of every family’s worst nightmare." - Booklist.

"Delinsky is adept as portraying angst, but her story would have greatly benefited from a tighter telling and more complex characters." - Publishers Weekly.

"The novel's foregone conclusion does little to help a narrow plotline to expand." - Kirkus Reviews.

"This touching and heartbreaking novel is highly recommended for public libraries where women's fiction is popular. Readers of Kristin Hannah and Patricia Gaffney will enjoy it." - Library Journal.

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Reader Reviews

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Karen

Beautifully written
While My Sister Sleeps was a true pleasure to read. As a sibling of one sister, I was drawn immediately to the topic of sibling rivalry and it's limits. The characters were genuine and their journey believable. Barbara Delinsky has created a terrific story, one that would be enjoyed by reading groups, as there could be no shortage of lively discussion after reading this book. This is the first book I have read by Delinsky and I am looking forward to reading more.

Amellia

Three letters...W-o-w!
I must point out that I have not read anything by Delinsky before "While My Sister Sleeps." Now I have to wonder why. This was a fabulous book, especially for book clubs who want to discuss a book with many topics that could lead to many different opinions: life support, relationships, the media, friends...and the many areas that are involved with a family crisis, even family secrets. I would have liked to read this at the same time as a sister, or friend to discuss it. That would be a great suggestion to anyone who would like to read this in it's debut. Pick up two copies and share with a friend while reading.

Without giving too much away, this was a book that forces the reader to ask questions of themselves. In fact this book sent me to the store for a journal to pass along my thoughts and feelings to my family. If a book can spark me to do anything in life...it must be good!

Thank you for allowing me the time to read this, I have to consider myself a Delinsky fan!

Vivian

Another Winner From Delinsky
I am a long time fan of this author and was very happy that she did not disappoint with this story. As always, Ms. Delinsky's strength lies in her ability to write realistically about relationships, mother/daughter, siblings and the love/hate relationship that we sometimes have with our family.

The book hooked me from the first page even though the storyline is heartbreaking. It made me think a lot about my own relationships with my mother and sister, and how I would react to such a sudden and devastating loss. A wonderful story of family, love, loss, forgiveness and understanding, I was sorry to see it end. I very highly recommend.

Barbara

While My Sister Sleeps by Barbara Delinsky
I liked the book right away as it held my interest. It dealt with medical ethics,sibling rivalry,and unfortunately one night stands and pregnancy. I would recommend this to my friends to read. It had a lot of info on both subjects and lately everyone has secrets in their closets. I give it a 5.

Linda

While My Sister Slept
This book I definitely could not put down. I started it after lunch and finished it at 11 PM the same day.How a family reacts to an unexpected emergency and faces the difficult decisions affecting everyone certainly held my interest. It makes me wonder how I would handle a similar situation. It really made me think! I will certainly be reading other books by this author and I could see it stimulating quite a discussion for a book club. As a retired librarian and a county library board member, I am always looking for interesting books to recommend.

Kathy

Non-stop Page Turner
Another great read from Barbara Delinsky! I had difficulty putting this book down once I started. I was completely drawn into the life of Molly Snow and wanted the story to continue on past the final page. I can see several themes in this book that would make for compelling book club discussion.

...12 more reader reviews

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Author Information

Barbara Delinsky Author Biography

Says Barbara Delnsky: "I was born and raised in suburban Boston. My mother's death, when I was eight, was the defining event of a childhood that was otherwise ordinary. I took piano lessons and flute lessons. I took ballroom dancing lessons. I went to summer camp through my fifteenth year (in Maine, which explains the setting of so many of my stories), then spent my sixteenth summer learning to type and to drive (two skills that have served me better than all of my other high school courses combined). I earned a B.A. in Psychology at Tufts University and an M.A. in Sociology at Boston College. The motivation behind the M.A. was sheer greed. My husband was just starting law school. We needed the money.

Oh. Oh. Back up. You'll love this. When I was in high school, I was kicked ...

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