ONE, TWO, THREE: Laurie Frankel's new novel has brains, heart, and an unforgettable voice... times three
Mab, Monday, and Mirabel are brilliant teenage triplet girls living in the tragic but heartwarming small town of Bourne. I am so tempted to just leave it there, because I went into this book knowing even less about it and it was such a lovely experience to just let it unfold.
Image courtesy of Laurie Frankel's website.
Frankel’s previous novel, This is How it Always Is, comes so highly recommended by Bibliophile, esq. members that when I saw One, Two, Three on Netgalley I just had to snag it. I haven't read This is How it Always Is yet, but it just moved to the top of my list.
One, Two, Three is told from the rotating perspectives of the triplets. Each is unique, distinct, and breathes such life into the story. Mab, Monday, and Mirabel felt so authentic, their struggles so heart wrenching, their family dynamics so entertaining, their love and care for each other so... so... what's the word for when just thinking about it even weeks after finishing the book brings a tear to your eye because the characters' love for one another was that beautiful and pure? It's that. And pretty hilarious from time to time, too.
Picture this, fans of Gilmore Girls: Lorelai Gilmore has triplets (three Rorys!?!?) and instead of running the Dragonfly Inn, she is the therapist for all the quirky residents of Stars Hollow, and bartending on the side to make ends meet. Voilà! That's One, Two, Three. Kind of. She's got some real Erin Brockovich vibes going on too. Are you confused? I KNOW, BUT IT'S BETTER THIS WAY, I PROMISE.
Any Empire Falls fans out there? Lots of similarities there too. Suffice it to say that even the smallest towns have their share of greed and corruption. Just like in Empire Falls, you are rooting for the good guys (girls) in One, Two, Three to overcome those obstacles and how they keep the entire town under a dark cloud (or worse). But this is a little more modern, funny, fast-paced, and Frankel nails the inner thoughts of teenage girls - three of them, even. The alternating perspectives really give this story life.
I read One, Two, Three compulsively, not only because the story itself was a bit of a page-turning legal thriller (and that’s painting it with too broad a brush- it’s not a legal thriller in the traditional sense, because it’s also a family drama and a mystery and a coming-of-age story)… I read it compulsively because anytime one sister’s chapter ended, I couldn’t wait to hear from the next one. I knew these sisters. And not just them, but the entire town of Bourne- its citizens painted so vividly, its history so rich.
I really think there's something for everybody in One, Two, Three. Anyone who has loved or hated their small town, or their family, or suffered tragic events while also recognizing that sometimes good things come from bad. It would be a fantastic book club selection- and Laurie Frankel even has a book club kit available on her site. Check it out here (spoilers inside)!
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