A History of Sisters in Fiction, From 'Little Women' to 'Sweet Valley High'

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The March brood, the Wakefield sisters, and eight other examples of sometimes-sweet, sometimes-squabbling literary siblings

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Kate Winslet and Emma Thompson play Marianne and Elinor Dashwood in the 1995 screen adaptation of 'Sense and Sensibility.' (Columbia Pictures)

Unconditional love and support, sibling rivalry, and family secrets pepper the world of literary sisters. One half of a famous pair of real-life sisterly scribes has a birthday this week: Emily Brontë. The Wuthering Heights author spent a lifetime penning poems and other tales with siblings Charlotte and Anne (using masculine pseudonyms), all devoted to their craft and each other—especially during the troubled times of their youth. Since the Brontës often used material from their lives to inform their stories—including their tight-knit relationship—we felt inspired to take a look at fictional sisters who also shared powerful bonds.

This post also appears on Flavorpill, an Atlantic partner site.

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