The Three Incestuous Sisters Summary and Reviews

The Three Incestuous Sisters

An Illustrated Novel

by Audrey Niffenegger

The Three Incestuous Sisters
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  • Published in USA  Sep 2005
    176 pages
    Genre: Novels

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Book Summary

An evocative, illustrated book by the best-selling author of The Time Traveler's Wife, Audrey Niffenegger. Reminiscent of the gothic style of Edward Gorey, Niffenegger's visually stunning narrative affirms her genius as a storyteller. These rich pages present the tale of three very different sisters: one who is beautiful, one who is smart, and one who is talented.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

'Niffenegger's spare, full-page, sepia-toned aquatints are evocative and Gorey-esque; they tell the story more than the minimalist prose does.' - PW.

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Pat Bosse

Her Fearful Symmetny
This is the first of your books that I've read...I loved this book...I couldn't put it down and when I had to I couldn't wait to continue reading it....It did have it's twists that sometimes made you wonder why was this in the story...then it would all come together. However, I didn't like the ending! It left you just hanging in the air...it was as if you suddenly decided you were tired of the story.... ....Hopefully, you will write a sequel to these people's lives. There were 4 of us that read this book and had great discussions about it and the ending...you disappointed all of us at the end.
Thanks for letting me bend your ear.

Cloggie Downunder

Different.
The Three Incestuous Sisters is the second “visual novel” by American author and artist, Audrey Niffenegger. The original books were hand printed: a limited edition of ten copies. The drawings are aquatints, featuring three sisters, Clothilde, Ophile and Bettine, who live by the sea. They all look quite similar but conveniently have different coloured hair. Two of them fall in love with the same man and jealousy leads to nasty consequences. The story is a little bizarre, but Niffenegger explains it needs to be imagined as a silent film made from Japanese prints, a melodrama of sibling rivalry. The text is certainly minimal, often as little as one or two words on the page opposite the prints.

In her afterword, Niffenegger explains the complicated process involved in the hand printing. The prints, in subdued colours (except for the sisters’ hair), are quite individual, and Niffenegger’s style is distinctive. It is easy to see from her later works (The Night Book Mobile and Raven Girl) that both the quality of the art and the storytelling have improved since the earlier books. Dedicated Niffenegger fans may wish to own a copy; borrowing from the library is recommended for those who are merely “interested”. Different.

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Author Information

Audrey Niffenegger Author Biography

Audrey Niffenegger trained as a visual artist at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and received her MFA from Northwestern University's Department of Art Theory and Practice. She has exhibited her artist's books, prints, paintings, drawings and comics at Printworks Gallery in Chicago since 1987. Her first books were printed and bound by hand in editions of ten. Two of these have since been commercially published by Harry N. Abrams: The Adventuress and The Three Incestuous Sisters.

Initially imagined as a graphic novel, Niffenegger realized that her idea for a book about a time traveler and his wife would be difficult to represent in still images. She began to work on the project as a novel, and published The Time Traveler's Wife in 2003 with the independent publisher MacAdam/Cage...

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