Author: Kristin Hannah
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Published: February 3, 2009
Paperback: 528 pages
Source: purchased at Borders
My Rating: 3.5 stars
Synopsis (from goodreads.com): The Grey sisters had only each other when their mother died years ago. Their stern, unyielding father gave them almost no attention. Winona, the oldest, needs her father’s approval most of all. An overweight dreamer, she never felt at home on the sprawling horse ranch that had been in her family for three generations. Aurora, the middle, is the peacemaker. Vivi Ann, the youngest, is the undisputed star of the family. Everything comes easily to Vivi Ann, her father’s love most of all. But when Vivi Ann makes a fateful decision to follow her heart, rather than take the route of a dutiful daughter, events are set in motion that will test the love and loyalties of the Grey sisters. They will be pitted against each other in ways none could have imagined. Secrets will be revealed, and a terrible, shocking crime will shatter both the family and their beloved town. With breathtaking pace and penetrating insight, Kristin Hannah’s True Colors is a novel about sisters, vengeance, jealousy, betrayal—and ultimately, what it truly means to be a family.
My Thoughts: Kristin Hannah's novel focuses on family: how we interact with one another, how family shapes our life and decisions, and how our family impacts our world around us. The Greys have lived in the same place, on the same piece of land, for decades now. They are considered a prominent family in the town, not because of their generosity, but because they have been there the longest. Their father recognizes this and makes sure that they always do the "right" thing, such as going to church once a month, going to the yearly parade, and not doing anything stupid. After the girls' mother dies, they rely on their father for direction and support but he provides little, if any. The novel focuses on the relationship among the three sisters, Winona, Aurora, and Vivi Ann. Each of their decisions seems to affect the other two, with some affecting their whole town.
I really enjoyed the sister's relationship with one another. Hannah gives them each of them such a distinct personality that they are easy to tell apart. They reminded me of actual people and not characters in a book. I could definitely identify with Winona (the oldest ... I'm the oldest too!) and her need to always do the right thing, even if it might hurt her sisters. Vivi Ann is so strong-minded that she seems to leap off the pages. No matter where I was in the story, her actions never seemed contrived or fake; they are always realistic, or what I think would happen to real people in these situations. The only sister I didn't like was Aurora. Maybe it was because she didn't really have a part in the story, so she only appeared occassionally, but there wasn't anything special about her. She didn't leap off the page, she was just always there. That was probably one of the things that I didn't like about this book. While it's a story about sisters, the one sister never seemed to be a part of the story.
I don't want to give away too much of the story, but it really had me turning the pages at some points. It was a legal thriller at times, chick lit at others, and a bit of a mystery at other times. It was very engrossing (I'm hoping all of Hannah's books are like this) and hard to put down! While I didn't enjoy it as much as Firefly Lane, it was a great summer read and makes me anxious to read another one of Hannah's novels.