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Authors: Jamie Brenner

The Wedding Sisters (40 page)

BOOK: The Wedding Sisters
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“Everyone, if you could please gather around,” said Olympia.

There was no aisle to walk down. Hugh stood by Meryl's side.

“You look more beautiful today than you did on our wedding day,” he whispered. Stowe and Meg walked hand in hand, taking their places in front of Olympia.

“Friends and family, we are so thankful you could join us here today to celebrate the union of Meg and Stowe. As you all know, it was a
little
bit bumpy getting to this afternoon.” When the laughter settled, Olympia said, “But I have rarely seen true love without a bit of drama. It keeps life interesting, does it not?”

Meryl noticed Jo and Leigh exchange an intimate, satisfied glance, while Amy checked her phone—no doubt texting her date.

Stowe and Meg beamed at one another. “I'm ready,” she said with a smile, glancing at Meryl. In that moment, Meg was her little girl playing dress-up again. She blinked back tears.

“Well, one down. Two to go,” Meryl whispered to Hugh, squeezing his arm.

“Please—let's not think about that right this minute. Let's just enjoy the fact that for now, we did good, didn't we?”

“Yes,” she said, reaching for his hand. “We did.”

 

Reading Group Guide

  1.   In the book's opening, Meryl is a young mother surrounded by the chaotic delight of her family. How has her feeling about her role as mother changed by the time her daughters are grown and planning their weddings?

  2.   As Meryl anxiously gets ready to meet her future in-laws, her husband says, “Remember, it's not about you.” Is Meryl making the wedding about herself, or is she really doing everything in the best interest of her daughter?

  3.   Out of the three sisters, the oldest, Meg, is the first to get engaged. Would the engagements that follow for Amy and Jo have happened if not for Meg's wedding plans? Why or why not?

  4.   How are the stresses of the Becker family's wedding plans universal, and how are they unique to this particular family?

  5.   How do the traditional expectations and etiquette of wedding planning affect the families? Should such rules still apply in modern times?

  6.   Meryl has always had a strained relationship with her own mother, Rose. Is Meryl at all responsible for their rift? Why or why not? In what ways does the wedding planning further push them apart, and in what ways does it bring them closer together?

  7.   Meryl is upset not only with the timing of Hugh's work crisis, but also with the position he takes on the controversy. Is she right to be annoyed with him, or should she be more supportive? Do you empathize with Hugh's stance at his school, or is he being reckless?

  8.   When Meryl finds herself drawn to a man from her youth, is it nostalgia for the past or is it her frustration with her present? How do Hugh's actions and attitude contribute to her newfound friendship?

  9.   Is Meg justified in feeling that Stowe puts the needs of his family before their relationship? At what point in a relationship should a person's priority shift from their nuclear family to their significant other?

10.  Youngest sister, Jo, has always been a free spirit and impetuous. In what ways does this serve her well and in what ways does it hurt her?

11.  How does Amy's feeling of being in constant competition with Meg affect her choices throughout the book? Is there a sense that this competition has diminished by the end of the book, or is it more likely this will always be the dynamic between the two sisters?

12.  Has Hugh changed as a husband by the end, or has only Meryl's perception of him changed?

13.  On a wedding day full of surprises, whose actions were the most unexpected? Did the sisters end up where they belonged?

14.  How do you imagine the lives of each of the three sisters ten years after the book ends?

St. Martin's Griffin

 

also by
jamie brenner

The Gin Lovers

Ruin Me

 

Praise for
The Wedding Sisters

“Filled with unforgettable characters and deep insights,
The Wedding Sisters
is a heartwarming and modern take on love, marriage, and family. Completely compelling and impossible to put down … I loved it!”

—Anita Hughes, author of
Rome in Love

“This story of three sisters who all plan high-profile weddings in the same calendar year is a smart, fun read that will leave you thinking about the nature of love, the spectacle of wedding planning, and what's really important in life. Prepare to be charmed by
The Wedding Sisters
.”

—Brenda Janowitz, author of
The Dinner Party


Little Women
meets
High Society
in Brenner's sparkling story of three sisters finding Page Six–worthy love. But while the hunt for the perfect white dress, and the partner to go with it, will draw readers in, it's the exploration of the power of families that makes
The Wedding Sisters
a modern romance that you will fall in love with.”

—Karin Tanabe, author of
The Gilded Years

 

About the Author

Jamie Brenner
was born and raised in suburban Philadelphia but has called New York City her home for the past twenty years. A lifelong book lover, she graduated from The George Washington University with a degree in literature and spent her career in publishing before becoming an author. She lives with her husband and two daughters. You can sign up for email updates
here
.

    

 

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contents

Title Page

Copyright Notice

Dedication

Acknowledgments

Prologue

Eight Months Until the Wedding

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Six Months Until the Wedding

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Three Months Until the Wedding

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

One Month Until the Wedding

Chapter 24

24 Hours Until the Wedding

Chapter 25

The Wedding Day

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Reading Group Guide

Also by Jamie Brenner

Praise for the Author

About the Author

Copyright

 

This is a work of fiction. All of the characters, organizations, and events portrayed in this novel are either products of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously.

THE WEDDING SISTERS.
Copyright © 2016 by Jamie Brenner. All rights reserved. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.

www.stmartins.com

Cover photograph: three gift boxes © A. T. White / Getty Images

The Library of Congress has cataloged the print edition as follows:

Names: Brenner, Jamie, 1971– author.

Title: The wedding sisters / Jamie Brenner.

Description: First Edition. | New York: St. Martin's Griffin, 2016.

Identifiers: LCCN 2015050411 | ISBN 9781250045744 (paperback) | ISBN 9781466845367 (e-book)

Subjects: LCSH: Mothers and daughters—Fiction. | Marriage—Fiction. | BISAC: FICTION / Contemporary Women. | FICTION / Family Life. | FICTION / Romance / Contemporary. | GSAFD: Love stories.

Classification: LCC PS3602.E6458 W43 2016 | DDC 813/.6—dc23

LC record available at
http://lccn.loc.gov/2015050411

e-ISBN 9781466845367

Our e-books may be purchased in bulk for promotional, educational, or business use. Please contact the Macmillan Corporate and Premium Sales Department at 1-800-221-7945, extension 5442, or by e-mail at
[email protected]
.

First Edition: June 2016

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