Mary Hogan’s powerful and poignant debut novel about two sisters—opposites in every way—plus their mother and the secrets and lies that define them all.
One family, two sisters, a lifetime of secrets . . .
The third child in a family that wanted only two, Muriel Sullivant has always been an outsider. Short, dark-haired and round, she worships her beautiful blonde sister, Pia, and envies the close bond she shares with their mother, Lidia. Growing up in their shadow, Muriel believes that if she keeps all their secrets—and she knows plenty, outsiders always do—they will love her, too.
But that was a long time ago. Now an adult, Muriel has accepted the disappointments in her life. With her fourth-floor walk-up apartment and entry-level New York City job, she never will measure up to Pia and her wealthy husband, their daughter, and their suburban Connecticut dream home. Muriel would like nothing better than to avoid her judgmental family altogether. One thing she does quite well.
Until the day Pia shows up to visit and share devastating news that Muriel knows she cannot tell—a secret that will force her to come to terms with the past and help her see her life and her family in unexpected new ways.
Praise For Two Sisters: A Novel…
— Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of The Shoemaker's Wife
“Mary Hogan’s Two Sisters is a mesmerizing journey into the secrets that can split apart brothers and sisters, children and their parents. It’s the perfect read for anyone who knows the way families can hold you up while breaking your heart.”
— Lauren Grodstein
“Exquisitely written, heartbreakingly honest, TWO SISTERS is the kind of story that will keep you turning pages into the night. A joy to read.”
— Jill Smolinski, author of Objects of My Affection
“Gripping and thought provoking, Two Sisters digs deep into emotions getting to the heart of family dynamics.”
— New York Journal of Books
“Book clubs will find much to discuss in this fraught, fascinating family drama.”
“Readers will dig the dramatic twists and sibling rivarly at the heart of Mary Hogan’s Two Sisters.”
— Fitness magazine
William Morrow Paperbacks, 9780062279934, 384pp.
Publication Date: March 4, 2014
About the Author
Mary Hogan is the bestselling author of Two Sisters and the historical novel, The Woman in the Photo. Previous novels include the young adult titles, The Serious Kiss, Perfect Girl and Pretty Face (HarperCollins). Mary lives in New York City with her husband, actor Robert Hogan, and their Catahoula Leopard rescue dog, Lucy. maryhogan.com
Conversation Starters from ReadingGroupChoices.com
In what way does belief in God define and motivate the characters?
Why is Muriel such a good secret-keeper?
If Muriel and Pia were closer in age, how might their relationship be different?
Is Lidia’s behavior forgivable?
Is Joanie a good or bad “mother figure” for Muriel and why?
Should Owen have insisted on a divorce the moment he learned the truth about Pia?
What will happen with Muriel and John, the guy she meets at the end of the book?
Will Lidia and Owen grow old together or eventually grow apart?
Why did Muriel need to confront her brother, Logan, in person?