Girls in Pants: The Third Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares.

girlsinpants_coverfinal

Book Three in the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants Series

338 pages

First Published January 25th 2005 by Delacorte Press

The sisterhood is back, along with their magical travelling pants. This summer is the eve of the rest of their lives. High school is over, and college awaits.

Carmen picks up a job working as a sort of companion for Valia – Lena’s recently widowed grandmother. Unbeknownst to her, Valia is miserable and crabby and a downright nightmare to be around. Lena’s father dragged Valia to the states after her husband died, but she wants nothing more than to go back to Greece. On one of their trips to the hospital, Carmen meets Win – a cute guy who volunteers there. Unfortunately, he keeps ‘catching’ Carmen in moments of random acts of kindness. But if she lets him see the real her – the quick-tempered, feisty version of herself – will he still be interested?

Lena is all set to go to art school in the fall, but when her conservative father walks into her drawing class and sees the live model – that is, the nude, live model – he freaks out and tells Lena that he will no longer be paying for her to go to an art school. Under the wing of her art teacher, Lena sets out to create an amazing portfolio that will score her a scholarship to the school of her dreams.

Tibby is uncomfortable with all the change that is going on. Brian further complicates things when he asks Tibby to be his date to the senior dance. Suddenly they are no longer just friends, but something much more. The problem is that Tibby isn’t really sure what she wants or if she even likes this new development.

Bridget is going to be coaching at a soccer camp much like the one she attended two summers ago. She knows her old pal Diana is going to be there and expects the summer to be a total blast. What she doesn’t know (but would if she read any of the information they sent her) is that Eric will also be there. Bee decides that this is okay, she is different now and vows not to lose herself again. She can handle this – the two of them will be friends – nothing more. Still, the heart wants what the heart wants…

 

Out of the first three books, I think that Girls in Pants is my favourite. I love that Bee gets a second chance to do the right thing with Eric, and that Carmen finally gets to have a cute little romance. On that note, it’s nice that Brian and Tibby finally get somewhere, as well! And on a kind of opposite note, I really liked that Lena wasn’t plagued so much by her feelings for Kostos. It’s touched on a little bit, but her main focus is on her future.

I feel that I should mention Ann Brashares writing again. The books are all written in third person, which really works. Somehow you seem to be closer to each girl than if it were written in first person. I think that if it were written that way, it would feel too disjointed and confusing because the story does jump around from each girl quite quickly. The chapters don’t have numbers and the characters seem to get a couple of pages each before it moves onto the next person. I like the way that this is done. In multiple POV books where characters get a whole chapter each, there’re often little cliffhangers and so I spend the first part of the next chapter begrudging the fact that I have to read about the second character when I just want to know what’s going on with that first person. Then, of course, I’ll get into that chapter and want to know about the second character while I’m next reading about the first. I kind of hate/love that feeling (but mainly hate). I guess it makes you want to read more, but I like the style in the Sisterhood books better.

There’s a lot of hope and happiness in this novel. Growth and second chances and future-induced trepidation. There doesn’t feel like a lot of drama, which is nice after the second book (which seemed to have a lot of it!). I can almost feel the sunshine emanating from the pages.

Girls in Pants is a lovely edition to the series. Highly recommended.

My Rating: 5/5

Goodreads Rating: 3.80/5

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