Sisters... No Way!

Everything About Fiction You Never Wanted to Know.

Sisters... No Way! is a novel by Irish author Siobhan Parkinson. It's told uniquely in the form of two diaries kept by two teenage girls. Cindy is a fifteen-year-old only child whose mother has just died of an illness. She's actually adjusting pretty well to it until her father starts dating one of her teachers. The teacher in question has two daughters of her own, sixteen-year-old Aishling and fourteen-year-old Alva. We read the diaries of Cindy and Aishling and get their views on how their lives change as their parents eventually marry and the families are forced to move in together.

In case you didn't get the parallel with Cindy's name and the plot, it's sort of a modern take on Cinderella, of course, without the poverty and toe-cutting.

Tropes used in Sisters... No Way! include:
  • Alcoholic Parent: Aishling and Alva's father Philip is implied to be this.
  • Alpha Bitch: Cindy's classmate Emma. She even at one point asks if Margaret sleeps in her mother's bed.
  • Angst? What Angst?: Cindy has this reaction to her father after her mother's funeral. She feels as though they should keep the shutters closed and is annoyed when he doesn't seem to be more sad. She eventually learns he's putting on a brave face.
  • Bitch Alert: Aishling and Alva have this reaction when they first meet Cindy.
  • Blondes Are Evil: Alva, the bratty fourteen-year-old. Averted with Margaret and Aishling, who are also blondes.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Alva, even though she's fourteen.
  • By the Hair: During an argument at the breakfast table, Aishling grabs Cindy by the hair to calm her down. Cindy does something similar to Emma earlier in the book.
  • Christmas Cake: Margaret. Richard is her first actual relationship since she split with Philip who has been with Naomi for at least three years.
  • Cool Big Sister: Richard's sister Imelda, though she's more of this to Cindy.
  • Crocodile Tears: Cindy uses these in her classes to avoid having to do complicated work. This backfires when she gets sent to the guidance counselor, and thus the story begins...
  • Defrosting Ice Queen: Cindy and Aishling towards each other. The end of both diaries have them civil enough to each other.
  • Dramatic Irony: If you read Aishling's diary first, then you'll immediately realise that Robbie, the guy Cindy meets in a bar, is her ex. If you read Cindy's first, then you'll clue in when he phones the house.
  • Everyone Loves Blondes: Aishling. She's pretty, popular, gets straight As and has a cute boyfriend.
  • Everything's Better with Bob: Aishling calls her boyfriend Bob but she's the only one. Once she dumps him, he switches to Robbie.
  • Hard-Drinking Party Girl: Cindy's best friend Lisa.
  • Idiot Ball: Aishling finds a pregnancy test in the bathroom bin and immediately assumes that it belongs to Alva, her fourteen-year-old sister, as opposed to Margaret, who's in an actual relationship.
  • In-Series Nickname: All the teachers at Cindy's school have them. At first everyone calls Margaret "Milly-Molly-Mandy" and then Cindy starts calling her "The Bay Tree" after her hairstyle.
  • Lady Drunk: Cindy, actually, when she first has dinner with Margaret and her daughters. Cindy actually passes out at the table.
  • Meaningful Name: Cindy - a young girl who gets a stepmother and stepsisters.
  • Missing Mom: Cindy's mother died and the story starts just after her funeral.
  • Perspective Flip: The two diary accounts.
  • She Cleans Up Nicely: Aishling has this reaction when Cindy comes over to dinner for the second time. The first time she wears jeans and dirty shoes but the second time she wears a dress, does up her hair and puts on a lot of makeup.
  • She's Got Legs: Aishling has this reaction when Alva wears a short skirt. "[Alva] has a nice figure, she should show it off a bit more".
  • Slobs Vs Snobs: Played with in regards to Bob/Robbie's choice of "snob" Aishling vs "slob" Cindy.
  • Wedding Day: Richard and Margaret. Cindy doesn't go to the wedding at first but turns up at the end.
  • When She Smiles: Margaret's smile is her best feature. At one point Aishling notices how old she looks but then Margaret smiles and she relaxes. Cindy remarks "she's not a very attractive woman but she does have a nice smile".