Book Review: The Favorite Sister

The Favorite Sister

by Jessica Knoll

Thank you to Simon & Schuster for sending me a free ARC of this book. All opinions expressed in this review are my own.


The Favorite Sister gives the reader a behind-the-scenes glimpse of what goes on behind the scenes of the taping of a reality TV show.  We learn at the start of the novel that one sister, Brett, does not live through the taping of the newest season of Goal Diggers, a show that is all about young successful women.  We also know that her sister (and frenemy) is not totally innocent.  But we don't know what actually happened until the end of the novel.  As a reader, we are transported back to the beginning of the season and we are slowly shown who all has motives and what really happened.  

Want to know more?  Check out the Goodreads synopsis here.

My review:The Favorite Sister is a fresh mix of reality TV drama (think Real Housewives or even The Hills) mixed with a murder. If you hate reality TV or some of the "lighter" murder books, then this may not be the pick for you.  It was a definite hit for me!

The Favorite Sister primarily switches between sisters Brett and Kelly as well as castmate Stephanie for the narrating.  We find out early (this is not a spoiler - I promise!) that Brett dies sometime during the filming of the newest season of Goal Diggers.  We know Kelly knows more than the police and TV viewers about what happened, but hasn't come clean for some reason.  That is about all we know when the book opens and rewinds us back to before the filming of the season.

As the book progresses, the readers are slowly introduced to what exactly happened and what led to Brett's death (murder?).  It also explores the complexities of female dynamics and what women do to stay on top.  As a younger sister, I definitely enjoyed Jessica Knoll's exploration of Brett and Kelly's relationship.  While this book is light and pokes fun at the female relationships (especially those portrayed on reality TV), it also tackles some pretty serious issues as well (eating disorders, body shaming, racism, sexism, etc).  

I do need to add that this book has several narrators and I found it hard to keep them all straight for the entire reading.  Many were a bit one-dimensional and none really had any character development to speak of.  I was totally fine with this, as I wasn't really expecting that from this light and fun novel.  I have to admit that I confused two of the characters (Jen and Lauren) for most of the novel, but don't really think that this affected up my overall enjoyment.  The primary characters and narrators - Brett, Kelly and Stephanie - are easier to remember and identify with.  These ladies are flawed, but aren't we all?

I enjoyed the fun of discovering what really happened in The Favorite Sister and I hope that you do, too!  I would not classify this as a thriller (as the back of the ARC says), but rather a drama-filled, binge-worthy read!  If you want a book to get lost in on a long flight or while hitting up the beach this summer, then look no further than The Favorite Sister!  I'll definitely be passing my copy along to my sister to read as well!


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