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MOBI Rebecca Wells ï ï Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood Kindle ´ of

When Siddalee Walker oldest daughter of Vivi Abbott Walker Ya Ya extraordinaire is interviewed in the New York Times about a hit play she's directed her mother gets described as a tap dancing child abuser Enraged Vivi disowns Sidda Devastated Sidda begs forgiveness and postpones her upcoming wedding All looks bleak until the Ya Yas step in and convince Vivi to send Sidda a scrapbook of their girlhood mementos called Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood As Sidda struggles to analyze her mother she comes face to face with the tangled beauty of imperfect love and the fact that forgiveness than understanding is often what the heart longs for


10 thoughts on “Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood

  1. says:

    When I was pregnant with my oldest child a girl I had a dream In my dream I was in the hospital postpartum holding not the one child I knew that I had been pregnant with but two children Both girls One of my baby girls was uiet observant peaceful She had big open eyes that reflected her big open heart The other child was physically larger than the other baby and it's complete opposite Ugly angry needy I sat there holding both babies in their swaddling clothes while the one cried and demanded and writhed and the other lay in my arms uietly observing simply taking it all in I had what has now become the all too familiar feeling of being in over my head lost even before I had begun And then in my dream my own mother walks into the room with the also all too familiar glower she has reserved for me for as far back as I can remember The look that says You don't deserve this I've never forgotten that dream and until recently couldn't figure it out Years later I do in fact have two daughters and a son born not in that order My two daughters are almost a decade apart in age the older bigger one is definately NOT the noisy demanding one No she's definately the open loving one An old soul if ever there was oneWhat does any of this bs about my dream have to do with Divine Secrets? Basically everything I have since sorted out this dream my oldest daughter is now 17 A young woman Just three years younger than I was when I carried her in my womb and dreamt of her and my mother and that demanding other child that needed so damn much all the time In the first few pages of Divine Secrets you are plunged into the life of an interesting lively young woman and her relationship with her mother All the bad behavior jealousy rage and hidden wounds When I read this book in 2002 I cried because I got that woman's rage towards her mother I was that woman Now I find as my own daughter enters adulthood I identify with the pain of that mother By the way that demanding baby in my dream was me and frankly that demanding baby in my dream is really a lot of us mothers to some degree or another Raising our own daughters while trying to finish the job of raising ourselves where our mothers might have failed Obviously that analogy doesn't apply to everyone but it's the link between that dream of mine and the thread of understanding that evolves in this book that are the same


  2. says:

    Rebecca Wells can think up a few succulent stories but her writing is absolute fast food It left me depressed to think that women are encouraged to read so called chick lit on the basis that they only need a few sentimental tales about love friendship andor family to satisfy them no matter how infantile the writing style or half baked the arguments view spoilerOf COURSE the story had to end with a big white wedding That signifies catharsis in every woman's life right? By the end of the book I was ready to scream if I had to read one description of what brand of clothing every female character donned in each scene When she branched out beyond fashion Wells's metaphors were mixed and repetitive if not cliché And when she did touch on several potentially provocative issues such as love loss racism poverty domestic abuse and religion in each case she only tapped the tip of the iceberg threw in some dramatic action like an Indian campfire or arson in a Catholic school and tried to let that pass for profound literary philosophyHer treatment of Southern racism made me terribly uneasy Only twice does she express outright disapproval In the case of her showing how the working class treatment of black servants in Louisiana was superior to the high society approach in Georgia she once again seemed to be superficially addressing an issue that for me needed attention and in depth analysis sheerly to avoid controversy With the crux of her story orbited by the ever lasting loyalty among the Ya Ya's she also completely failed to address the fact that it is generally abnormal and unhealthy to remain in a cliue from high school on into senility It usually signifies a failure to branch out explore and learn Considering the uality of the book maybe the author proves this point therein hide spoiler


  3. says:

    I think Vivi WAS a tap dancing child abuser Any discussion of this fact ends at the being whipped with the belt scene Vivi had no right to be enraged when this fact comes to light she should have been embarrassed yes Her daughter arguably should not have revealed this dirty laundry but should have worked it through with her mother privatelyAccording to this book a scrapbook of silly adventures with Vivi's zany friends makes that behavior forgivablenot an apology or explanation from Vivi Daughter is chastened and forgives dear Vivi after reading the scrapbookAnother thingPLEASE spare me the Southern Women stories I live in the South and have never met anyone remotely like thisThank God


  4. says:

    I'm having a hard time deciding if I liked this book or not On the surface not so much About 30 pages in I wasn't sure if I was going to make it through or if I was going to go insane if I saw the word Ya Ya one timeThere were some things that I liked about it Friendship that endures closer than blood Knowing there's always someone there in your corner and they've been there your whole life Daughters learning that Mom had a life before she became a Mother and has a separate identity apart from MomI think my main problem was that I thought the Ya Yas were all a bunch of spoiled brats that we're supposed to love just because we're told to Oh they're so fabulous it's okay that they desecrate a religious icon that means a lot to Vivi's mother It's okay that they strip down naked and go swimming in the town's water supply So the message seems to be that you can get away with whatever the hell you want as long as you act like it's your birthright to be so obnoxiousMeanwhile Sidda daughter of Vivi one of the Ya Yas pretty much seem to do nothing but page through the old scrapbook the Divine Secrets of the title avoid her fiance and Think Deep Thoughts as she walks around the woods or wherever the hell she is She doesn't really seem to have much identity of her own she just exists so there can be a Happy Ending that we all knew was coming anywayThe main conflict between Sidda and her mother seems to be that Vivi beat the holy hell out of her kids and she's mad that Sidda is now famous enough to be interviewed for the New York Times and she told them about it So Vivi's mad thatthe truth was told So I guess I'm glad I read it I'm also glad I only paid half price for it at the used bookstore


  5. says:

    I am so tired of this sort of storyline A group of Southern women who form a timeless bond of woman ness and Southern ness and triumph in the face of all hardship because they are delicate as blossoms yet strong and fierce That said when entering a genre so well covered and sticky sweet one must do something to make one's work stand out I believe Rebecca Wells does an above average job at this and her book was a fun and easy read It was hardly ground breaking nor did I find it moving and I didn't shed a tear or laugh out loud I just wrinkled my nose at the way everyone just wrapped up their lives with a nice bow at the end and no one walked away with residual hurt feelings or misunderstandings then put the book down and decided to write this review before I promptly forgot it entirelyIf you watched Steel Magnolias or Beaches and thought they were profound you'll just love this book


  6. says:

    When the whole Ya Ya craze was going on my book club decided we'd better read it to see what all the fuss was about In the end we had to take a vote ya ya if you liked it; no no if you didn't I fell into the no no group I found it disturbing that hordes of women were flocking to this book that is really about completely dysfunctional families and marriages and a really unhealthy attachment to friends from the past It made me wonder what's going on with women that this kind of co dependent group of friends was something to aspire toI had a similar reaction to Bridges of Madison County although I did go see the movie and Meryl Streep did get me despite my skepticism


  7. says:

    To borrow an expression from the book this sucker is Trés ya ya no How can a writer so obsessed with small town aristocracy manage to slip in so many references to peeing in one's pants?I never manage to abandon books once I've started them even when they're utter and total tripe Thank goodness this reads fast so I didn't waste any of my life on itI seem to be missing the Chick Lit Gene I just flat out do not understand or identify with this kind of writing I'm not like this My friends aren't like this My mother thank Heaven is not like this Our lovely Louisiana friends are not like this I don't know anyone who is like this I'm beginning to suspect that nobody is like this except in pulpy pseudo literature written by women with juvenile Scarlett O'Hara fantasies I would be ashamed to be this kind of feminineThis is the story of Sidda a dull spineless immature 40 year old with no identity of her own and her malicious self absorbed alcoholic racist mother Vivi who appears to be taking out on everyone around her the frustrations of a lifetime of being a legend only in her own mind One gets the impression that Vivi needed the Ya Yas so she could be notorious somewhere since she doesn't have the class or discipline to accomplish anything of genuine valueIt's badly written the dialogue is clumsy and I think it must hold some kind of world record for wallowing in self pity Wells is also an unbearable reference dropper River Road Recipes interspersed bayou French Cajun fiddle Community Coffee etc Apparently the divine secret is that this bunch of self centered superannuated teenagers chose to flash freeze their high school lives and mentalities at the expense of emotional adulthood their marriages and their children Yeah there's going to be drama and hardship in your life if you react to every little thing as if it's a catastrophe and use it as an excuse to drink and dope yourself into a stupor Complex needs to stop being a literary euphemism for manipulative self serving toxic and narcissistic Ironically Vivi is the least likable and least interesting of the four Ya Yas though she's supposed to be the luminaryI guess it says something that Ms Wells has lived in Washington state for the past 25 years If she loved Louisiana so much why did she leave and then write boring mindless novels about it?


  8. says:

    My mother and her Ya Ya’s were called the sisters of Beta Sigma Phi sorority in Charleston SC I grew up on the marshes watching them swing dance shuck oysters and throwing what always seemed like a never ending festival that celebrated life They did community work and supported the local theatre but mostly they just had a good time I grew up in the whirlwind of color and laughter that now seems only like a distant dream Momma passed 18 years ago and I don’t think I will ever be the same I miss her and her Ya Ya’s Aunt Betty Aunt Carol Aunt Dolores with their respective husbands and friends in toe I live in New York now not unlike Siddlee but they are always with me especially when I revisit their split a parts in the tapestry of Rebecca Well’s – Divine Secret of the Ya Ya Sisterhood If you want to know about who I am and where I come from read this book it explains a lot So pass the bloodies sugar it’s time to get our panties in a knot


  9. says:

    EXCERPT Wearing nothing but their father's old seersucker pajama tops over their panties the four girls pushed Genevieve's convertible to the end of the long drive before Vivi climbed behind the wheel and started it There was only a dollop of gas in the tank so they couldn't get far 'I just know we shouldn't be doing this' Necie said as they journeyed into the night 'We should have at least put on pajama bottoms' 'Necie this is not a mortal sin you know' said Teensy 'I do not recall it being listed in the Balti Catechism' Vivi said 'Moses didn't utter one word about pajama bottoms when he came down from the mountain' said Caro'Well' Necie said 'I guess these tops do cover of our bodies than our swimsuits do'As Vivi drove it seemed that not only the Ya Yas' bodies but the earth and sky were sweating The very air they breathed was almost a juice Moonlight spilled down into the convertible onto the four friends' shoulders and knees and on the tops of their heads so that their hair seemed to have little sparks shooting off it 'Bewitched Bothered and Bewildered ' played on the radio Vivi had no idea at all where she was headed but she knew that whatever direction she went her friends would go with her ABOUT THIS BOOK When Siddalee Walker oldest daughter of Vivi Abbott Walker Ya Ya extraordinaire is interviewed in the New York Times about a hit play she's directed her mother gets described as a tap dancing child abuser Enraged Vivi disowns Sidda Devastated Sidda begs forgiveness and postpones her upcoming wedding All looks bleak until the Ya Yas step in and convince Vivi to send Sidda a scrapbook of their girlhood mementos called Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood As Sidda struggles to analyze her mother she comes face to face with the tangled beauty of imperfect love and the fact that forgiveness than understanding is often what the heart longs forMY THOUGHTS 'The beauty of imperfect love' That is the essence of the series of books that begins with Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood On the surface this is a story of friendship love and survival But it goes so much deeper than that Wells explores the mother daughter bond with all its misunderstandings and misconceptions hurt feelings and petty feuds and the underlying love that ultimately overshadows everything else This is not a subtle story It is big and loud and blowsy Flamboyant Southern It is full of emotion from full blown histrionics to studied indifference It's characters love and hate with eual abandon they drink and cuss and appear to neglect their children But they have a bond seemingly unbreakable so that when something threatens one of them they circle their wagons and protect one another But what happens when that threat that danger comes from inside? Siddalee Walker is about to find out A few careless words to a reporter about her mother may have just exiled her from her family foreverI love this book Adore it It is my favourite of the three in the series Tattered is how I would describe its condition Definitely beyond well worn I read it often and I find it extremely difficult to put into words how much this book makes me feel I laugh a lot and cry not uite so much every time I read it It invokes memories pleasant and not so pleasant of my own childhood Every time I read this I get something different from it Definitely one of my lifetime top ten books ❤❤❤❤❤THE AUTHOR Rebecca Wells was born and raised in Alexandria Louisiana “I grew up” she says “in the fertile world of story telling filled with flamboyance flirting futility and fear” Surrounded by Louisiana raconteurs a large extended family and Our Lady of Prompt Succor’s Parish Rebecca’s imagination was stimulated at every turn Early on she fell in love with thinking up and acting in plays for her siblings—the beginnings of her career as an actress and writer for the stage She recalls her early influences as being the land around her harvest times craw fishing in the bayou practicing piano after school dancing with her mother and brothers and sister and the close relationship to her black “mother” who cleaned for the Wells household She counts black music and culture from Louisiana as something that will stay in her body’s memory foreverIn high school she read Walt Whitman’s “I Sing the Body Electric” which opened her up to the idea that everything in life is a poem and that as she says “We are not born separately from one another” She also read “Howl” Allen Ginsberg’s indictment of the strangling consumer driven American culture he saw around him Acting in school and summer youth theater productions freed Rebecca to step out of the social hierarchies of high school and into the joys of walking inside another character and living in another worldThe day after she graduated from high school Rebecca left for Yellowstone National Park where she worked as a waitress It was an introduction to the natural glories of the park—mountains waterfalls hot springs and geysers—as well as to the art of hitchhikingRebecca graduated from Louisiana State University LSU in Baton Rouge where she studied theater English and psychology She performed in many college plays but also stepped outside the theater department to become awakened to women’s politics During this time she worked as a cocktail waitress once accidentally kicking a man in the shins when he slipped a ten dollar bill down the front of her dress—and began keeping a journal after reading Anais Nin which she has done ever sinceDISCLOSURE I own my own copy of Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells published by Harper Collins And do not ever try to part me from it All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreadscom profile page or the about page on sandysbookadaywordpresscom This review and others are also published on Twitter Instagram and my webpage


  10. says:

    Much of this book I found really aggravating the unthinking privilege of the Ya Yas their total narcissism the constant and tedious drama and yet I found myself looking forward to my lunch breaks so I could read it Despite the foreignness of the situations and location the class and race there was still enough of my mother and me in Vivi and Siddalee Walker to make the book resonate with me In the end that's what I enjoyed not uite the right word you know what I mean though most but that said if you don't personally connect with that particular motherdaughter dynamic it might just leave you pissed off at the hamminess of it all