Title: The Three Weissmanns of Westport
Author: Cathleen Schine
Release Date: February 2, 2010
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Rating: 4 out of 5
Miranda is an incredibly successful literary agent, but she has recently had a string of failures that have left her bereft. Meanwhile, her stepfather, Josie, is leaving her mother for another man. Desperate, and short on money, Miranda, her sister Annie, and their mother Betty, move to a small cottage in Westport to start life over again.
The Three Weissmanns of Westport is a re-telling of Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, which made me hesitant when I first picked it up. There has been a lot written about Jane Austen lately, from mash-ups to rewrites, and I have been careful with what I read because I don’t want to get overwhelmed by Austen and thus get sick of hearing about her. (Austen fatigue?) However, I needn’t have worried – Cathleen Schine’s novel is subtle and well-written.
While it definitely is reminiscent of Sense and Sensibility, Schine does a great job updating this classic tale. However, it’s not necessary to know the story of Sense and Sensibility to enjoy and appreciate this book. Each of the three women are well-written and fleshed out into three dimensional characters. The hope that each will find a happy ending is really what makes this book worth reading.
The Three Weissmans of Westport was an enjoyable women’s fiction novel that I recommend to anyone who’s looking for a light, fun read. If you like Sense and Sensibility, this book is a must – Schine really does a genius job in updating this story and making it relevant for the modern reader.