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Archive (Buddy Reads) > Buddy Read: Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah

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message 1: by SandyC (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments Skandia and I will be buddy-reading Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah, beginning mid-March. Anyone is welcome to join the discussion!

Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah

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In the turbulent summer of 1974, Kate Mularkey has accepted her place at the bottom of the eighth-grade social food chain. Then, to her amazement, the “coolest girl in the world” moves in across the street and wants to be her friend. Tully Hart seems to have it all---beauty, brains, ambition. On the surface they are as opposite as two people can be: Kate, doomed to be forever uncool, with a loving family who mortifies her at every turn. Tully, steeped in glamour and mystery, but with a secret that is destroying her. They make a pact to be best friends forever; by summer’s end they’ve become TullyandKate. Inseparable.

So begins Kristin Hannah’s magnificent new novel. Spanning more than three decades and playing out across the ever-changing face of the Pacific Northwest, Firefly Lane is the poignant, powerful story of two women and the friendship that becomes the bulkhead of their lives.

From the beginning, Tully is desperate to prove her worth to the world. Abandoned by her mother at an early age, she longs to be loved unconditionally. In the glittering, big-hair era of the eighties, she looks to men to fill the void in her soul. But in the buttoned-down nineties, it is television news that captivates her. She will follow her own blind ambition to New York and around the globe, finding fame and success . . . and loneliness.

Kate knows early on that her life will be nothing special. Throughout college, she pretends to be driven by a need for success, but all she really wants is to fall in love and have children and live an ordinary life. In her own quiet way, Kate is as driven as Tully. What she doesn’t know is how being a wife and mother will change her . . . how she’ll lose sight of who she once was, and what she once wanted. And how much she’ll envy her famous best friend. . . .

For thirty years, Tully and Kate buoy each other through life, weathering the storms of friendship---jealousy, anger, hurt, resentment. They think they’ve survived it all until a single act of betrayal tears them apart . . . and puts their courage and friendship to the ultimate test.

Firefly Lane is for anyone who ever drank Boone’s Farm apple wine while listening to Abba or Fleetwood Mac. More than a coming-of-age novel, it’s the story of a generation of women who were both blessed and cursed by choices. It’s about promises and secrets and betrayals. And ultimately, about the one person who really, truly knows you---and knows what has the power to hurt you . . . and heal you. Firefly Lane is a story you’ll never forget . . . one you’ll want to pass on to your best friend.


message 2: by Skandia (new)

Skandia (sfgirl) | 962 comments I finished reading the book a couple of days ago.
For me Firefly Lane is a book about friendship , growing up and mostly about the choices we make on the way.
I'm about a decade younger than Kate and Tully and because of that the background and many references to 70-s, 80-s, and 90-s pop culture were a bit foreign to me and didn't tie in the story that much. But I liked it anyway.
It was interesting to follow the lives of best friends Kate and Tully. The story was well written and kept me interested. Although I'm not a fan of Kate and her choices – to marry a man who is in love with your best friend or abandon your own dreams of becoming a writer for being full time housewife, I do understand that not everybody is that ambitious and committed as Tully was and she was extremely so.
Everybody must live with the choices made. You win some and you lose some and as this story showed at the end there is not always time to reconsider your choices and there is no such thing as having it all.


message 3: by SandyC (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments And you told me you are a slow reader! :-)
I am on page 98. Kate and Tully have just started college. Really enjoying the story. That Cloud is sure a piece of work!


message 4: by Skandia (new)

Skandia (sfgirl) | 962 comments Guess I'm not slow then :)
Sry for spoilers.
About Cloud - the only thing that was weird and kind of left hanging in the end was the explanation why she left when Tully was born. There were couple of hints about some story behind it, but it was never told.


message 5: by SandyC (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments Hmmmm...interesting...

This book really reminds me of people in my life. My best friend was raised by her Grandma because her mom was too young/irresponsible to take care of her.

My husband went into foster care with his best friend's family when he was in high school.

Just thought those were interesting parallels!


message 6: by Skandia (new)

Skandia (sfgirl) | 962 comments Looks like Kristin Hannah could be one of those authors who writes a story that anybody can find something to connect with.
For me it was the friendship that lasted decades and survived distances and differences. My best friend lives in California, almoust fifteen years now, and still she is the one I call first with the news or asking advice. We even joke that Estonians invented the Skype so WE could keep in touch 24/7 if needed :)


message 7: by Dee (new)

Dee (austhokie) | 7316 comments this book reminded me so much of the movie beaches with Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey towards the end...I was reading it on night shift at work and completely bawling my eyes out. But then I don't think I've finished one of her books and not been crying


message 8: by SandyC (last edited Mar 09, 2012 06:15AM) (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments Dee wrote: "this book reminded me so much of the movie beaches with Bette Midler and Barbara Hershey towards the end...I was reading it on night shift at work and completely bawling my eyes out. But then I do..."

@Dee, I know what you mean...I bawled during
Winter Garden.. I just couldn't handle one particular event.

@Skandia, I live in Minneapolis, and my best friend lives in Dallas. We've been friends for 36 years. It's really hard to not just be able to talk to her whenever I need to. We do email and text a lot. I keep telling her we should Skype, but both of us have young children so finding the time for that seems to be difficult! Anyway, this book and other books about long friendships always remind me of her.


message 9: by SandyC (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments Kristin Hannah has broken my heart once again. I could barely read the last two pages because I couldn't stop crying.

Dee, you're absolutely right about the Beaches comparison.

I really enjoyed this story of a friendship. Both women had their unlikable moments. (view spoiler)

I think this book also brings up the question of women having a successful career and family. Yes, it can be done! Thousands do it every day. Tully and Kate are extreme examples of the "career woman" and "at home" mom.
I don't think either of them ever regretted the choices that they made, however both sometimes feel that they are unfulfilled somehow. I can see how this book could cause many heated book club discussions.


message 10: by SandyC (new)

SandyC (sandyc88) | 1281 comments Kristin Hannah has broken my heart once again. I could barely read the last two pages because I couldn't stop crying.

Dee, you're absolutely right about the Beaches comparison.

I really enjoyed this story of a friendship. Both women had their unlikable moments. (view spoiler)

I think this book also brings up the question of women having a successful career and family. Yes, it can be done! Thousands do it every day. Tully and Kate are extreme examples of the "career woman" and "at home" mom.
I don't think either of them ever regretted the choices that they made, however both sometimes feel that they are unfulfilled somehow. I can see how this book could cause many heated book club discussions.


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