Henry’s Sisters by Cathy Lamb

Isabelle Bommarito is a mess.

She continuously picks up men… connects for a night and then disposes of them quickly.  As in now… as in LEAVE.

Cecilia Bommarito is depressed.  Her husband is having an affair right under her nose.  And so she eats… and eats… and eats while her anger boils over onto anyone in the way.

Janie Bommarito is a best selling author.  While shy and a loner in real life, her books are filled with heinous crimes that would make the strongest persons stomach churn.  She lives alone in a boathouse and counts everything out by fours….

The Bommarito sisters all have issues…. BIG ONES.  And if you met their mother, River Bommarito (one time stripper, dancer, child neglecter…. ) you may understand why.

Then comes Henry Bommarito.  Sweet Henry.  Sickly as a baby and later diagnosed to be mentally handicapped.

Honest to God, Henry is the only normal person in the family. 

The only one.

Did the Bookies have a fire?

The Bookies book club read this for their January book pick.  It had been nominated before… and passed on.  This time, it won the vote.

The opening line:

I would have to light my bra on fire.

Hmmmm… potential?

When the sisters Bommarito’s are all called home to help take care of Henry while their mother goes into the hospital for surgery – there is, to say the least, reluctance.  The girls do not have fond memories of growing up with a mother who neglected more than loved… who at times layed in bed for weeks under the weight of her own depression leaving the girls to fend for themselves and Henry.  And now added to the top was their grandmother who had Alzheimer’s so severely she thought she was Amelia Earhart.

Yet the girls do go back, to care for Henry the brother they love, and to work in the family bakery while their mother is away. 

The result?  A touching story – at times hilariously funny… heartwarmingly sweet, and occasionally painful.  It was a book that put you on an emotional rollercoaster and left you in the end…


As for the Bookies…. what a great review.  We had spaghetti and lasagna (two on Henry’s favorite meals).  Garlic bread and a chicken salad, and even home made cupcakes – to die for!!!!

Angie's mouth watering cupcakes

The Bookies do know how to party....

Ok... there may have been a fire.... we may have burned some bra's... BUT - this is not the Bookies first fire. 😉

We loved the book, no one rating less than an average read – more leaving towards the higher marks.  We discussed the sisters we felt we were most like, and Henry’s unwavering kindness to all.  We could all learn a little something from Henry. 

In the end, out of the 16 of us in the room, 9 admitted to bawling like a baby at some point in the book… present company included.

Henry’s Sisters is a book I personally loved – Cathy Lamb writes with a quick whit and a way that made me feel I was in the room with these quirky characters.  I highly recommend this read – it was touching and funny. 

Amazon Rating

Goodreads Review

I purchased this book from Barnes and Noble – read on my NOOK “Snooky”

About Sheila (Book Journey)

Bookaholic * Audio Book Fan *Bike Rider *Rollerblader *Adventure Seeker *Runner*Coffee lover *Fitness Fan * Movie junkie

Posted on January 12, 2012, in Book Review and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 28 Comments.

  1. Sounds like a fantastic book…and a fantastic book club!

  2. You have the BEST book club! I love it when you share stories and photos. Those cupcakes were over the top! Y’all sure know how to party.

  3. This sounds like such a cool read!! I would *love* to read that! I was already enjoying your review so much 🙂
    Thanks for sharing, will put it on my TBR list and hope to read it sooooon!
    And you have a real life book club, enjoy it!! It looks and sounds very cozy!

  4. Oh, I’ve been waiting for your review! I knew you would love it, even though I still haven’t read it yet! I will. It’s sounds like my kind of story in every way.

    And, can I just say, there is something about messy looking desserts that make my mouth water!!

  5. I must say that despite this being a book I would not normally think about reading, your enthusiasm for it has me rethinking my priorities. Thanks for the review.

  6. I’m definitely adding this one to the list….I’ve read and adored other books by this author, but this one sounds really special. Thanks for the review.

  7. This is definitely going on the list. Its also available in the library. Now to go and snag it before anyone else does.

  8. Sounds like a good read, thanks for the review!

  9. I read this a few years ago. Unfortunately, I’ve forgotten most of it. Including Amelia Earhart!

  10. shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

    I loved this book – wish I had had that meal to go with it though!

    Shelleyrae @ Book’d Out

  11. I’m glad you liked this much better than I do. It was a 1 star book for me unfortunately… here’s my review if you are interested: http://mentalfoodie.blogspot.com/2012/01/book-review-henrys-sisters-by-cathy.html

  12. The cupcakes make me hungry, the bra-burning makes me smile .. your description of this book, complete with the bawling, makes me want to pick it up! Thanks for a great review!

  13. Definitely a great Bookie night!

  14. Girlfriend!!

    Ya should have contacted me…I Skype with book groups all over the country, all the time.

    Soooo glad that The Bookies enjoyed Henry’s Sisters.

    Have another one out in August, A Different Kind of Normal.

    Hopefully it will make you laugh…and cry.

    Cheers and happy reading.
    Cathy Lamb


    PS That dinner looked delicious….someone sure knows how to cook.

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