Title: Firefly Lane
Author: Kristin Hannah
Series: Firefly Lane #1
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Release Date: February 5, 2008
From the New York Times bestselling author of On Mystic Lake comes a powerful novel of love, loss, and the magic of friendship. . . .
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.
“One thing I can tell you for sure is this: we only regret what we don't do in life.”
I have only one word to describe Kristin Hannah's work: POWERFUL.
Over the years, I have heard how good of an author she is but until you picked and read one of her books, you really don't have ANY idea.
Firefly Lane is my first book by her (sad, isn't?) and I will never forget it. In my honest opinion, it's a powerful (there goes that word again) display of women's fiction.
Firefly Lane tells the story of two girls, both dealing with their own pain, who bring their guard down long enough to become best friends. This friendship continues through their ups and downs over the span of three decades.
Kate Mullarkey is the shy girl, with thick glasses and a retainer. She feels lonely and uncool. She wishes things were different. Her mother seems overbearing and things at school couldn't be worse. Her closest friends have moved forward to boys and parties, leaving Kate behind.
Tully Hart has had her heart broken by her mother Dorothy "Cloud" too many times to count. When she was just a small child, Cloud dropped her at her grandmother's house and didn't return for years. At fourteen, Tully has become a beautiful and popular girl and Cloud is back to take Tulla with her. This time, they made it all the way to Firefly Lane where Tully will have to start a new school and make new friends. But, Tully is starving for the real thing, she wants to feel loved. She wants to matter. She doesn't want to be left behind again.
Kate and Tully's world come together just when they needed each other the most. From the moment they promised to be friends, they are part of each other's lives. Through high school, dating, college, work, marriage and tragedy, they will be each other's support system. The reader follows them throughout the 70's, 80's, 90's and 2000's with the (amazing) music, pop culture, politics and events that marked the world as their background.
“To make real friends you have to put yourself out there. Sometimes people will let you down, but you can't let that stop you. If you get hurt, you just pick yourself up, dust off your feelings, and try again.”
I will say that the last part of this book made me a sobbing mess but I couldn't put this audio down. Through cleaning, shopping, and driving, Kate and Tully followed me. I was right there with them. I felt their pain and sorrow.
With Firefly Lane, Kristin Hannah has made me a fan for life.
“Dying was a lonely business.”