I had seen the movie and my daughter recommend the book, so I ordered it from the library.
Stats: Published in 2004, print is 383 pages, audio is 13 discs or 15 hours. Narrated by Judith Ivey
Blurb: When Siddalee Walker, oldest daughter of Vivi Abbott Walker, Ya-Ya extraordinaire, is interviewed in the New York Times about a hit play she’s directed, her mother gets described as a “tap-dancing child abuser.” Enraged, Vivi disowns Sidda. Devastated, Sidda begs forgiveness, and postpones her upcoming wedding. All looks bleak until the Ya-Yas step in and convince Vivi to send Sidda a scrapbook of their girlhood mementos, called “Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood.” As Sidda struggles to analyze her mother, she comes face to face with the tangled beauty of imperfect love, and the fact that forgiveness, more than understanding, is often what the heart longs for.
What I liked: It’s a great story of family and friendship. Rebecca does a wonderful job with the writing, as well. The character are all real and interesting people. That’s what kept me going in the longer sections. I was surprised that the movie people changed the plane scene (when as a child Siddalee misses out on a plane ride and her mother takes her back) from a elephant scene. I suppose plane rides are more exciting to film than a slow ride on an elephant. The narrator, Judith Ivey, does a wonderful job with the accents.
What I didn’t like: It was a bit long in parts. I’m not exactly sure how the love these women had for each other translates to the love between a married couple, since Sidda and her mother working things out and helping Sidda come to terms with herself and her expectations is really the major point of the story. I also would have like to know more about Sidda’s father – he’s painted as an ass in Sidda’s childhood and a good guy later on. And how does he live and deal with all the things Vivi does while they are married?