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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it's still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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The Gifted Gabaldón Sisters Paperback – October 1, 2008

4.0 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Lopez's engaging novel chronicles how four sisters' lives are shaped by the early loss of their mother and their belief that they were granted magical abilities upon the death of an enigmatic loved one. Bette, the eldest Gabaldón sister, is a preteen in the late 1960s when Fermina, the family's beloved and very old housekeeper, dies, and Bette and her sister Loretta tell the younger girls, Rita and Sophia, that Fermina gave them all special powers. As the siblings grow up, they long for more information about the mysterious Fermina, particularly as their supposed talents continue to manifest: Bette is a preternaturally good liar; Loretta can heal animals; Rita can offhandedly hex people; and Sophia can make people laugh. The author skillfully writes from different points of view and teases out Fermina's background in a satisfying way as the sisters try to learn more about her story. Lopez establishes herself as an excellent storyteller with this multilayered tale of sisterhood, growing up, self-awareness and honoring history. (Oct.)
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From School Library Journal

The four Gabaldón sisters were named by their mother Bette Davis, Loretta Young, Rita Hayworth, and Sophia Loren. However, their mother died young, so rather than be raised to emulate movie stars, they were raised by Fermina, their elderly Pueblo housekeeper, with mysterious mystical rituals, promises, curses, and gifts. The sisters tell their stories in turn over a period of 20 years, from 1966 to 1987; their narrations are interspersed with Works Progress Administration reports from the 1930s about Fermina. As the girls grow up, they wonder more and more about their family's and Fermina's mysterious unhappy pasts and about Fermina's dying gifts. Occasionally reminiscent of the novels of Cristina Garcia and Sandra Cisneros, López's book presents a lively, loving Latino family. López's Soy la Avon Lady and Other Stories was awarded the Independent Publishers Book Award for Multicultural Fiction and the Latino Book Award for Short Stories; she has also published Call Me Henri, a novel for young adults. Includes reading group guides in English and Spanish. Highly recommended for public library collections.—Mary Margaret Benson, Linfield Coll. Lib., McMinnville, OR
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (October 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446699217
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446699211
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,308,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Reviewed by Christina Wantz Fixemer
on 09/17/2008

Loretta, Bette, Rita, and Sophie Gabaldón lost their mother when they were very young. The ancient housekeeper who helped raised them promised each girl they'd receive a gift after her passing. Over the following two decades, the girls grow into women, each of them uniquely gifted. One heals, one tells splendid lies, one curses, and one makes others laugh. Time can only tell whether or not the gifts are blessings.

The bonds of sisterhood are explored and tested as the sisters Gabaldón search for meaning in a sea of questions about their family. Each chapter is told in a different sister's point of view, and each voice is beautifully rendered through first, second, and third-person narrative, and past and present tense--a different style for each of the sisters.

On the surface, the story may seem complex, maybe over-ambitious. But Lorraine López skillfully weaves the story of five women into a complete saga. Her use of scenery, emotion, and flat-out characterization is entrancing. I smelled the kitchen aromas and cringed at bad karaoke. I saw the sisters as young children, then mothers.

I enjoyed the characters and was sorry to parts ways with them. Each sister was wonderfully flawed, yet deliciously vibrant. It would be a joy to meet them again.

4.5 Books
The reviewer may have received a free copy of this novel from the publisher, author, or other representative in this book's interest. This has no impact on the quality or consideration of the review. Wantz Upon a Time has not and will not accept money in exchange for reviews.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I like the story line very much. Unfortunately, I read the book on my Kindle and several times it was necessary to look back at something and that becomes frustrating with the Kindle. I enjoyed the different view points from each sister and also how it all came together in the end.
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Format: Paperback
Rating: 3.75 stars

"The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters" is about four sisters who were taken care of by a mysterious elderly woman named Fermina. Upon Fermina's death, the girls all seek to discover the special gifts Fermina claimed to have left for them. Each chapter skips ahead a couple of years and the story takes readers from childhood to adulthood. The story is told by each of the sisters in alternating chapters with varying points of view, from first person to second person to third person.

This book was nothing like I expected. Most of the chapters reveal devastating and sometimes difficult hardships that the sisters faced, with little pause for comic relief. I was expecting a tale of magic and intrigue, but the primary plot left no room for mystery because the secret the sisters were searching for throughout the novel was revealed earlier on to the reader.

Having said that, I really did enjoy Lorraine Lopez's writing itself. Her unique use of different perspectives was refreshing and kept my attention. Lopez's strength definitely lies in her vivid descriptions because each character and setting managed to come alive for me, which perhaps was what made some parts of the book so incredibly heartbreaking.

"The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters" is a worthwhile read, despite its lack of suspense and melancholy themes. Lorraine Lopez is a talented writer and I look forward to reading more from her in the future.

[...]
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Format: Paperback
After reading The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters, by Lorraine Lopez, I am astounded. Lorraine Lopez is the author of Call Me Henri, which won the Paterson Prize for Young Adult Literature, and Soy la Avon Lady and Other Stories, which won the inaugural Miguel Marmol Prize for Fiction. She has also had several short stories published in various magazines, is an assistant professor of English at Vanderbilt University, and the associate editor for the Afro-Hispanic Review. She resides in Nashville, Tennessee, with her husband.
The Gabaldon sisters lost their mother at a very early age and it was their Pueblo caretaker, Fermina, who held them together during that rough period, with love, compassion, and humor. Upon Fermina's passing, she told them of a special gift each would receive, selected just for them. Twenty years later, the girls wonder about these supposed gifts and if the woman who bestowed them was a witch or plain crazy. Loretta- with the power to heal animals, Bette- the ability to spin stories, Rita- the power to curse others, and Sophia- having the skill to incite laughter; the women delve into their family and Fermina's woven history. As secrets and mysteries are revealed, it shows the Gabaldon sisters who their guardian, Fermina, really was and teaches them the truth about themselves, as well.
I'm going to issue an age warning, stating I feel this book is appropriate for ages fifteen plus, as there are sexual references, drug abuse, and some sexual abuse references. Though it is very tactfully and eloquently told, it is still present.
I am intrigued by how the idea for The Gifted Gabaldon Sisters came to Lorraine Lopez, which is told in her biography in the back of the book. She comes from a large extended family with ties to central New Mexico.
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