Reel Life: A Novel

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Siblings play an important role in our lives, especially in sister-to-sister relationships. Townsend has crafted the lifelong story of Betty and Jamie, two redheaded sisters just a year apart in age. Like most of us, the girls share their childhood with parents who are less than perfect. As a result, the sisters struggle to relate to a mother and father who are each distant in unique, yet troubling ways. Betty and Jamie take their own paths through life, each adapting on her own, yet turning to the other for support.

Sibling rivalry, petty disagreements, the pain of parental separation, and the travails of life play out in chapters named for various movies. Townsend does a great job of intertwining the characters’ lives with the themes of films such as The Wizard of Oz, Vertigo, Shrek and The Exorcist. However, the story drags in many places, as the minutiae of life is described in extreme detail, with a few vague, minor characters unnecessarily thrown into the mix. Surprising twists add to the drama, as infidelity and betrayal re-occur like a generational curse. But, that’s real life, and ultimately, Reel Life turns out to be interesting, just like in the movies.

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Star Count 4/5
Format Trade
Page Count 380 pages
Publisher Ripetta Press
Publish Date 22-Feb-2012
ISBN 9780983791508 Buy this Book
Issue August 2012
Category Popular Fiction


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