This novel, Sisters in Sanity, surprised me. I expected everything, but not what I got. Emotions, passion, strength, and the strong will of a teenager who fights for who she is and how she became what she is. You shouldn´t judge this novel by its cover. At least not the one, the German edition has. 

Zusammen Wie Schwestern*
by Gayle Forman
Translation Stefanie Schäfer
Original Title Sisters In Sanity**
Publisher Fischer FJB on March 27, 2019
Genre Novel
Pages 281
Format Softcover
Source Publisher

The 16-year-old Brit Hemphill doesn´t know who she can trust. Convinced that she can not be tamed otherwise, her father has deported her to Red Rock – a so-called treatment facility for troubled girls. Where the therapy consists of insulting and punishing and favoring those girls who talk badly about the others. But then Brit meets V, Bebe, Martha, and Cassie – four girls who keep her from going over the edge. And together they have the chance to stand up to the grim reality of Red Rock and bravely go their own way. 
Brit was raised by a very free-spirited mother and a father who loved his girls over the moon and back. But when her mother disappears and her father marries again it turns out that the way how Brit´s personality has developed is far from what her new family, her father on top, can handle. The secret her father is keeping from her is throwing a dark shadow over everything. And the fear, he can´t tell her, brings her to a place where she gets help in a way, she´d never expected. 

I like the soft, sensitive way Gayle Forman uses to write about the most delicate things in a teenager’s life. Emotions. There is a special magic in her words, although I have to admit that I could have thrown Brits dad at some point against a wall. For more than ten years he raised his daughter to be an individual girl, to follow her passion, and to see the world from a different perspective. And Brit does exactly that. Good, her style isn´t what others would call normal – but what exactly is NORMAL? And all of a sudden, her father starts criticizing exactly THAT! The conflict that occurs the moment a stepmother stands on their doorstep shows that women can be real bitches. Everything that was good and right the way it was, now isn´t right and good anymore. And when teenage hormones kick in and life seems to be one hell of a bad place with no one who understands you, life becomes a living hell. 

For both sides.

And at Red Rock, only one thing is the goal. Fear. Big Brother is watching you. Wrong. Big Brother´s only in your head. Playing with your fear means nothing if the control others gain over you is only because you let them get it. 

It took me a while, to get behind Brit´s figure. She discovers that playing in a band means everything to her. It is her world. A world that happens mostly late at night. Where she is supposed to lay in bed, sleeping. Making music, writing songs, and performing them keeps her away from the edge. But her father fears that the way he has raised his daughter over the years has become a threat. That she isn´t herself anymore. And the nightmare begins. I was not happy with the way how Brit´s father was created. The moment Brit´s mother is gone, he changes completely. And not everything of that change can be explained by her mother´s absence. He suddenly has the need to reverse everything he taught his little girl and make her a completely new person. Not working.

If you keep reading this book all the way through, you will be rewarded with a very emotional and fitting end. Sisters in Sanity shows you strength, confidence, friendship, loyalty, and the will to live your life and to go your own way. Good, sometimes I had the feeling that what I read wasn´t new to me. But all in all, I was hooked. And that end. Holy heck!

Happy reading

*This book was kindly provided to me by Fischer FJB in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Thank you. Therefore, the cover of the German edition is shown first in this review.

**Title was published as a paperback by Harper Teen on May 3, 2016. 

Gayle Forman
Gayle Forman ©Dennis Kleiman

Gayle Forman is an award-winning, internationally bestselling author and journalist. She is the author of Just One Day and Just One Year, and the companion e-novella Just One Night, as well as the New York Times bestsellers If I Stay and Where She Went. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, with her husband and daughters.



  1. This sounds kind of like Girl, Interrupted. I loved that movie and really want to check out this book now :)

    1. I have not seen that movie, but guess I should *smile*. Thanks for stopping by.


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