I think this has to be one of the most dysfunctional families that I have ever read about in fiction. The mother suffers from a narcissistic condition that keeps her making sure that she is the best at everything there is. Her daughters must constantly tell her that she is the best mom. Her husband has to constantly tell her that she is the best wife and he has to insure that he does nothing to convey any other message. The penalties for not following the rules of the mother are very severe. You can be cut out of the mother's life very easily. A punishment that really messes with children, young and old alike.
The mother in this book has started a war and the daughters are done with being soldiers on a battlefield. The results are very dangerous in this well written book. I do have to say that I did not finish the first book written by this author. I didn't realize that until I had finished this one, however. My main concern was that there was a lot of psychological chatter and diagnoses. Something I was not expecting in the first book. With this book I went into it just knowing that two sisters ran away and one reappeared after three years. I think I enjoyed this one a lot better because I had no preconceived notions and the "psych" jargon didn't really bother. Actually, it was very interesting.
I read this book all in one sitting and will definitely take another look at Wendy Walker's first book as I didn't finish it the first time.
Thanks to St. Martin's Press and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.