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Firefly Lane: A Novel Paperback – January 6, 2009
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“Hannah's latest is a moving and realistic portrait of a complex and enduring friendship.” ―Booklist
“Not since Iris Dart's Beaches, twenty years ago, has there been a story of friendship that endures everything, from girlhood dramas to bitter betrayal, to be the touchstone in two women's lives. In Firefly Lane, Kristin Hannah creates the most poignant of reunions and an unforgettable story of loyalty and love” ―Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of The Deep End of the Ocean
“A tearjerker that is sure to please the author's many fans.” ―Library Journal
“With perfect pitch, Kristin Hannah describes the tumult and energy of the 70s and 80s, and on a deeper level takes readers into the heart of a friendship between two women. Firefly Lane is masterful at the grand sweep and the fine detail.” ―Elin Hilderbrand, author of Barefoot
“This terrific buddy saga about two best girlfriends who survive all sorts of escapades and catastrophes will inevitably provoke comparisons with Iris Dart's 'Beaches,' but the story is all Hannah's own.” ―The Seattle Times
“No one writes more insightfully about women's friendships with all of their messy wonder, humor, pain and complexity like Kristin Hannah. She's a marvel.” ―Susan Elizabeth Phillips, author of Natural Born Charmer
About the Author
- Publisher : St. Martin's Griffin; First edition (January 6, 2009)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 528 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0312537077
- ISBN-13 : 978-0312537074
- Lexile measure : HL730L
- Item Weight : 1.01 pounds
- Dimensions : 5.55 x 1.5 x 8.26 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #911 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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I enjoyed "Firefly Lane" well enough as a light, rather vacuous beach-type read, and the three stars are a tribute to the fact that I didn't think of it as a waste of time. It does have its issues, though, and they appear throughout the book like an annoying Greek chorus. They're a bit like being stung by a jellyfish: You forget how painfully annoying it is until it happens again.
Foremost among "Firefly Lane's" jellyfish Greek chorus is an issue many other reviewers have already pointed out. Prepare to be hit over the head by every product, piece of apparel, type of hair accessory, toy, TV show, song, game and more from each of the decades we spend with Tully and Kate. How many times can we hear about "low-slung bell-bottomed jeans" in the 70s? "Banana clips" in the 80s? And this is coming from someone who usually loves descriptions of clothes in period pieces. (Can you imagine if, each and every time one of Scarlett's dresses was described in "Gone with the Wind," Margaret Mitchell had repeated that under her dress, Scarlett wore a hoopskirt, several petticoats and pantalettes, just in case you somehow didn't catch that we're in the 1860s? That's what you get here.) Not only is this tedious and annoying, but sometimes it's even a detriment to one's reading comprehension. (At one point Tully asks Kate why she's "being so Joanie about this." Having spent only babyhood in the 1970s, I haven't the foggiest what that even means.)
Throughout, there's a general absence of adherence to the old writer's standby, "Show, don't tell." And frankly, it really annoys me when I see bestselling authors getting away with that. Kristin Hannah gets away with it in the worst kind of way.
And are the good guys always drop-dead gorgeous? Do we need to be told twice of Johnny's "black Irish" handsomeness? (Did we even need to be told once?) And are the drop-dead gorgeous good guys always emotionally unavailable loners who wear rock band T-shirts? And if they are, do we need to be told this about them each and every time we have a scene with them?
I found the TullyandKate friendship to be way over the top, and frankly don't think a "best friends forever" relationship could actually survive 30 years if it really were like the relationship described here. The codependency would have putrefied it eventually, and it would have died a natural death somewhere in young adulthood. Friendships can and do survive for one's whole lifespan -- I have several that have and do -- but not on such unhealthy terms.
Top reviews from other countries
To be honest it took me a couple of chapters before I started to get into it but the more I read the more involved I became. The story introduces us to two young girls from very different backgrounds and we follow them as they grow into adults. They take different paths and the reader travels with each of them, experiencing their joys, their pleasures, and their pains. I must say it was an interesting journey.
I tried to figure out why I liked this book so much, a coming of age tale not being my usual thing. I think it was because about halfway through the book I realised I was reading about the humdrum life of a housewife and I was really enjoying it, the reason I was enjoying it was because I really cared about this woman. I wanted everything to be okay for her.
I can’t compare this book with any other ‘coming of age’ novels, but if you’re looking for a cracking story with well developed characters and tragic/happy events that fold seamlessly into the plot without feeling contrived (as happens so often in novels when an author wants to create extra conflict!) then this is a jolly good read. One thing though <spoiler alert> it is very sad at the end.<end> Well worth a read. Thank you.
The plot is not originally built at all, the story is taking too long but missing the depth required for such a life story, some facts are exaggerated to the extreme.
I couldn't warm up to any of the 2 main characters. Neither to Tully, who is the taker in their friendship - I found her incredibly selfish, always having to have her way in everything, never considering others' feelings or opinions. Nor to Kate, who is the giver, always letting things go and putting her feelings away to the point she becomes depressed.
Both of them are unhappy with the life choices they've made, but none of them does anything to change.
The final was aimed to be epic, but it is so exaggerated that turns into a pathetic imitation of a Victorian drama