Perfectly Ella (Strawberry Sisters #1) by Candy Harper

24702375How did I get the book? Netgalley, thank you Simon & Schuster UK

Genre: Contemporary

Previously reviewed:
Have a Little Faith
Keep the Faith

Synopsis: Meet the Strawberry Sisters! Oldest sister Amelia wants to be Left Alone to have deep thoughts, so she’s grown a fringe to hide under. Second up is Chloe who’s sport-crazy and in training to be a wrestling star (this week anyway). Littlest sister Lucy is the cute one who’s training an army of earwigs. Then there’s Ella. The middle one who’s still trying to work out what makes her “perfectly Ella” and how to stand out in a house full of big personalities. And now there’s a new Strawberry Sister. Baby Kirsti who lives with Dad and his Finnish girlfriend. Along with her sisters and one very tired Mum who’s struggling to keep it all together, Ella’s small home is crammed with almost-finished homework, nearly-clean jumpers and a vampire bunny called Buttercup. With so much going on, life can sometimes feel totally crazy but the Strawberry sisters have a secret weapon against the craziness of the world they live in, each other.

200words (or less) review: The first book of the Strawberry Sisters is narrated by Ella. Unlike her sisters who Ella can sum up instantly: Amelia – angry at their father, Chloe – loves sport and Lucy – unique in every way.  Ella is sure about who she is and the description her sister’s give her of “nice” isn’t particularly what she had in mind.

But Ella is nice – she’s lovely, considerate and sweet. She’s also utterly convincing as a narrator because while she might be trying to get her two best friends to get along (it’s not working out) and her older sisters not to fight (that’s not happening) and helping her mum (who’s trying to balance four daughters and work) not to mention everything else… Ella falters. She grows.

I love the character development and the family dynamics in this book. Ella is the narrator but you get to know all the sisters really well. There are some really special moments, the kind where you wish you could climb into the pages and actually hug the characters you’ve come to love.

Perfectly Ella is perfectly lovely.

Recommend it?

Absolutely

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