Cover image for Separate sisters
Separate sisters
Springer, Nancy.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Holiday House, [2001]

Physical Description:
83 pages ; 22 cm
Thirteen-year-old Donnie is so upset over her parents' divorce that she gets into increasingly serious trouble at school and does not recognize how much her older sister is hurting as well.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR MG 4.6 3.0 57141.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Young Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



Thirteen-year-old Donnie is so upset over her parents' divorce that she gets into increasingly serious trouble at school and does not recognize how much her older sister is hurting as well.

Author Notes

Nancy Springer was born in Montclair, New Jersey on July 5, 1948. She received a degree in English literature from Gettysburg College in 1970. She has written about 40 books for children, young adults, and adults including the Sea King Trilogy, the Tales of Rowan Hood series, the Book of Isle Trilogy, and the Enola Holmes Mystery series. She has won numerous awards including the James Tiptree, Jr. Award, the Joan Fassler Memorial Book Award, and two Edgar Allen Poe Awards.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 5-7. Frank, fast, funny, and gentle, this story of two sisters caught up in their parents' recent divorce is about hurt and anger, loyalty, and betrayal. At the center is Donni, who is 13 and still in sixth grade. Her first-person narrative is wild and rebellious; in fact, she's so out of control that she's in serious trouble, suspended from school. With a tidal wave surging and thundering inside her head, she wonders if she's crazy. She hates herself and the awful words vomiting out of her ("I was more scared of me than I was of anything"). Most of all, she vents her fury at her "perfect" sister, high-achiever Trisha, Mom's favorite, and she doesn't see that Trisha is also in trouble. The sisters make up ("Give me a break. You are such a pain."), but Mom and Dad stay divorced, and there's no happy-ever-after ending. Wry and desperate, Donni's irreverent galloping voice rings true, and many siblings will recognize the intimacy and tension with the friend and enemy who shares her home and knows her best. --Hazel Rochman

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5-7-Donni and Trisha's parents have recently divorced, and the sisters react differently. Outspoken and rebellious, Donni, 13, is suspended several times for angry and profane outbursts at the vice-principal. Trisha, 14, quiet and studious, confides her loneliness to her computerized journal. The story focuses on the younger girl, who lives with her father, and her behavior in school and her strained relationship with her mother and her sister, who live together. "Mom is what she calls assertive and I call bossy. She is what she calls well-organized and I call neurotic.-Naturally Mom likes Trisha the Perfect a whole lot better than she does me." With her strong voice and personality, Donni is a multidimensional character. She is simultaneously confused, angry, and surprisingly likable. There is much internal action that reaches a crescendo when Donni deletes her sister's journal. A tidy ending is offered when the troubled girl goes to her mother, who suspects that her daughter may have a chemical imbalance and needs help. Unfortunately, this glimpse into the mind of a teen with an emotional problem reads like an extended prologue and character study, and it never takes off as a novel.-Laura Glaser, Euless Junior High School, TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.