My Brilliant Sister by Amy Brown – Our Review
Divided into three sections, My Brilliant Sister is a very different novel – one that is innovative and fascinating. Like Anna Funder’s Wifedom it explores the balance women must find between family, career, creativity and finding themselves (and not being written out of history). And no you don’t have to have read My Brilliant Career to enjoy it (though I’m sure that would add an extra dimension).
The first section focusses on Ida, a NZ academic who has moved to Melbourne for her husband’s job. Unable to find academic work she is stuck in lockdown as a teacher trying to balance parenting and teaching remotely while yearning for a chance to do her own writing.
The middle section is written by Linda (real name Ida), the little-known sister of feisty feminist Stella (Miles Franklin). Structed like My Brilliant Career, it’s the book Linda might have written if she had had the opportunity and provides an alternative version of the famous novel.
The final section returns to the present and features Stella, the sister Ida never had? A career focussed artist who has chosen her work and creative fulfilment over family, she is at a crossroads in her life.My Brilliant Sister poses plenty of questions about the role of women in domestic life in a playful, poignant and entertaining way.
Review by Andi @ Great Escape Books