The Almost Archer Sisters
Beth Archer chose a different life: fancy apartment in Manhattan, fancy friends, making lots of money. She's been on her own since she was a teenager, and she's still on her own, outgrowing dress styles and boyfriends faster than Peachy can inherit them. But on a visit home one weekend, Beth upends everything Peachy thought she knew about being happy.
In the tradition of Jennifer Weiner and Melissa Bank, The Almost Archer Sisters is a refreshingly honest portrait of sisterhood, motherhood, and female mayhem in its many states of grievance, grace, and forgiveness.
Reading Group Guide
1. The Almost Archer Sisters is written entirely in Peachy's first-person perspective. Do you trust Peachy's narration of the events in the novel? Are there specific events that you question? For example, how might Beth have told the story of the abortion differently? Of the discovery of Nell's suicide?
2. On the first page of the novel, Peachy describes herself as "unremarkable," "kind," and, perhaps most significantly, as a "stayer." What do you think are the benefits of being a "stayer" like Peachy, or a "leaver" like Beth? What did you think about Peachy's perception of herself in the novel overall? Does she like herself? Do you like her? Why or why not?
3. When Peachy is telling the story of Beth's teenage years, she observes, "I had experienced adolescence largely through Beth, much the way I like to think she'd later experience adulthood through me." (34) In fact, Peachy repeatedly emphasizes her own "adulthood" and Beth's "adolescence" in the novel. Do you agree that Peachy is the most "adult" character in the novel? What aspects of Peachy's character are more "adolescent" than Beth's?
4. In a particularly dramatic moment in the novel, Peachy has an argument at the U.S.-Canadian border with her father, Lou, about Beth's adultery. Peachy, furious with her father for defending Beth, tells him, "I didn't take my sadness out on the whole fucking planet." Lou responds, "That's right, Peachy. You don't. You're luc see more