Jun 21, 2010

Mom Still Likes You Best by Jane Isay

The author of Walking on Eggshells turns her wisdom to the sometimes heartbreaking but always meaningful bond between brothers and sisters—a must-read for anyone blessed with the gift (or burden) of a sibling.

There’s a myth out there that good relations between brothers and sisters do not include conflict, annoyance, disagreement, or mixed feelings. Isay believes this is a destructive myth, one that makes people doubt the strength of the connection with their siblings. Brothers and sisters may love and hate, fight and forgive, but they never forget their early bonds.

Based on scores of interviews with brothers and sisters young and old, Mom Still Likes You Best features real-life stories that show how differences caused by family feuds, marriages, distance, or ancient history can be overcome. The result is a vivid portrait of siblings, in love and war.


Jane Isay has been an editor for over forty years. She discovered Mary Pipher’s Reviving Ophelia, commissioned Patricia O’Connor’s bestselling Woe Is I and Rachel Simmons’s Odd Girl Out, and edited such nonfiction classics as Praying for Sheetrock and Friday Night Lights. She lives in New York City, not too far from her grown children and grandchild.


Mom Still Likes You Best is a collection of interviews that the author had with many groups of brothers and sisters.  The book is divided into three sections:  Beginnings, Life's Course and Making Choices.  There are some stories that cover the early childhood years, and then it expanded on how relationships change as the siblings become teenagers and young adults.  The book ended with a large section on adult relationships between siblings, specifically in relation to aging parents.  I think most readers will be able to identify with at least some of the stories described in this book.

However, there were no startling revelations about sibling relationships, or ways to help solve any "unfinished business" as the subtitle on the book cover suggests.  If you would like insight into the multi-faceted dynamics experienced in other families, then you will likely enjoy reading this book.

Disclosure: I received a free copy of this book from Doubleday. Opinions expressed in this review were not impacted by the receipt of the free book.

Mom Still Likes You Best: The Unfinished Business Between Siblings
Hardcover: 192 pages
Publisher: Doubleday (May 4 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0385524552
ISBN-13: 978-0385524551

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