Title: Firefly Lane
Author: Kristin Hannah
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Release Date: Feb. 5, 2008
Book Source: Public Library
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.
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.
I’ve only read one other book by Kristin Hannah, “Night Road”, and did not enjoy it. It took place in the 90’s, and felt too much like an advertisement for MADD. Plus the personality of the mom in the story really put me off.
So when this book was picked for book club, I was afraid it would be another disappointment. I am delighted to say that is was not!
Although I’m a bit younger than the women in this story, I could relate to a lot of the things they went through growing up. And the soundtrack of their lives, was exactly what I was listening to.
The main characters, Tully and Kate, are complete opposites, and that’s why they compliment each other so well. Tully’s mom only thinks of herself and abandons her daughter who has to live with her grandma and foster parents. Kate’s parents are a loving couple, who have rules and consequences for their children. Although nothing that I thought was out of line.
Tully is outgoing and wants to become a news anchor, at a time where not many women were. Kate follows Tully’s lead, but really just wants to be a stay at home mother. This is where the complications in their relationship begins.
If Kate would have been honest with Tully right away about what she wanted, they could have avoided a lot of hardships. But then there wouldn’t have been a story.
Also Tully is not a big fan of children, since the way her mom treated her, and all Kate wanted was to have kids. This is something that comes up a lot in my life, trying to keep friendships with people who have children.
The beginning of the story was a bit slow. But I enjoyed reading it, because as I said before, it was like reliving my childhood. Once you got into the 90’s, when Tully starts getting news stories, and Kate’s life takes a different direction, is when the story really starts getting good.
At first I was a bit annoyed by the major life upset that happened at the end. (I figured it would either be in regards to sickness or infidelity, and I’m glad Hannah went the way she did… but it still bothered me.) But the way she ended the story made up for the, in my opinion, overused plot device.
If you’re looking for a book to take up to your cabin or beach house, this would be a great choice. Just make sure to have a box of Kleenex nearby… I think I went through half a box!