Cumberland, 2003, 22.95, 297 pp.
Taliaferro “Tollie” Ervin knows that she would never have come home to Kelsal, a small South Carolina barrier island to watch her father die except at the request of her youngest sister Wallace. Tollie believes her other two sisters Douglas Page and Carter Eleanor would not have returned either except for Wallace.
The four siblings think back to momentous events in their lives raised by an Episcopal minister and his wife. While the three oldest fled to the mainland when their mother died, Wallace remained behind to care for their father, the Reverend. None of the quartet expected an epiphany, but soon begin filling in their perspective of their family biography. Each wonders how the incidents that shaped them and the parents that raised them in love and piousness produced four unique girlies. When this journey into the unknown ends, what will Tollie, Douglas, Carter, and Wallace take with them, as each understands now that the wiring of the child makes the adult.
THE FOUR SISTERS is an intriguing look at relativity, as each of the siblings brings to the table a different perspective on shared major events in their lives. The intelligent story line is an insightful character study told through the mind lens of Tollie that still enables the audience to comprehend what makes each sibling tick and to a lesser degree the motives of their parents too. As the puzzle pieces begin to fill the gaps and spaces (almost like a mystery), fans of deep relationship dramas will enjoy this glimpse at what shapes the adult.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner