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Jessica
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Registered: ‎09-24-2006
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Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

[ Edited ]

In the 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 Firefly Lane. Spanning more than three decades and playing out across the ever-changing face of the Pacific Northwest, this is the poignant, powerful story of two women and the friendship that becomes the mainstay 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. She will follow her own blind ambition to New York and around the globe, finding fame, success, and loneliness.

All Kate 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 betrayaltears 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 -- knows what has the power to hurt you, and to heal you.

Reply to this message to talk about Firefly Lane, and to ask the author for her insights.

Message Edited by Jessica on 02-08-2008 11:40 AM

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deb-oh
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Registered: ‎02-04-2008
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

I finished Firefly Lane a week or so ago.  I really loved the story of friendship, sacrifice, commitment that these two friends had.  Being of the same age, and the same "memories" of Boones Farm and all the music and style of the the times...brought the whole thing close to my heart.  After all didn't we all have these friends growing up?  I know I did, and it has inspired me to send this book to my "best friend" just to let her know what a huge influence she had on my life.  Hope everyone enjoys this book and the memories it brings as much as I did.  Thank you Kristan!
Author
Kristin_Hannah
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Dear Deb-oh--
 
I felt exactly the same way about Firefly Lane while I was writing it.  The novel was extremely personal for me, and contained a lot of my own memories.  It was fun--and sometimes painful--to mine those bygone times.  There's something about all that music that really brings one's youth back to them.
 
I'm so glad you enjoyed the book.  I'm just wondering if you grew up at the same time or in the same area?  I'm always interested in how alike all our lives are.
 
my best,
Kristin
Inspired Wordsmith
Stephanie
Posts: 2,613
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Kristin,
 
Judging by your photo, you're not old enough to remember the 70s, or the 80s! 
 
I grew up on the other coast at the same time - perhaps five years behind - and the memories made me laugh and laugh!  All through the 70s I was wearing paisley... ugh.  Long straight hair- and we had a VW Bus at one point.  But the 80s- we thought we looked great, didn't we?  Those padded shoulders!  The peg-leg stirrup pants!  Big hair, punk-rock-- Footloose and Flashdance?  Remember wearing two pairs of socks, different colors, scrunched down, but over the leggings?  I laughed 'til I cried, remembering those clothes.
 
I figure if we survived the fashions, we can survive anything. 
 
 
Stephanie
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streamsong
Posts: 118
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Hello Ms Hannah; It's a pleasure to meet you!
 
I was a lucky recipient of an ARC of Firefly Lane, the first novel of yours that I have read.
 
I also grew up in the same time frame; graduated from high school in 1974 in a small western Montana town not too many hours from Seattle. Many of your memories made me smile. Ah the troll dolls! And green polyester pants suits! The year that I was a freshman was the first year girls were allowed to wear pants at all; jeans were never allowed while I was in high school.
 
Kate and Tully really touched my heart. I was completely engaged emotionally with them and cried buckets over the last chapters.
 
I also believe that by writing about this unusual form of breast cancer, with such unusual symptoms, you will  save lives. I totally salute you for that. I am very sorry that your mother lost her battle with breast cancer. I lost a friend--ten years younger than I am-- to breast cancer this year, too.
 
I did question the time frame from when the character (trying to avoid too many spoilers here for those who haven't read it) is sent home to die after the cancer has metasized to her brain in the spring and she was able to live until October. It seemed that she was granted an extra long time of grace before her death. Or perhaps it just seemed agonizingly long as I sobbed through those last months of her life.
 
Thank you for reminding us all of the special place our friends have and how we always need to give them that one last hug.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Crystal8i8
Posts: 46
Registered: ‎02-04-2008
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

By some strange quirk of fate I was out shopping with my mother last week, when I strolled down the book aisle at our local BJ's (which I do quite often.)  I came across your book and something screamed at me to pick it up.  When I checked this website the next day, there was the photo of you from the cover staring back at me.  So, I figured what the heck, I should read this next and maybe get in on the conversation about it. 
 
Well, I did and I have...
 
I am a child of the 80's who grew up in Mass and still your book connected to my life instantly.  Granted I didn't get to drink Boone's until my college years, I owned trolls, I dressed in the stirrup pants (which drove me insane,) I remember the legwarmers and the bodysuits even.  I remember sneaking out with my best friend to walk around the neighborhood and smoke cigarettes that we "borrowed" form her mother.
 
My best friend and I had our fights and disconnections but we have managed to remain the best of friends even though she (as a single mom) has had twins and moved 4 hours away to a very rural town in Maine.  We went to 2 different colleges and have never lived together but that connection of friendship runs oh so deep. 
 
One of my aunts had to have both of her breasts removed when I was in college and another of my aunts had a hysterectomy.  I find cancer to loom over the back of my mind daily and have become cautious to check myself on a regular basis.
 
Your story kept me up for two almost sleepless nights until I had devoured it in its entirety.  I laughed, I creid seemingly endless amounts of tears...    I too want to send it to my best friend and write her a note in the front cover to remind her of some of the things we did.
 
Being only 24, you have touched my life with your story and related it to my own life with amazing clarity.  Thank you for writing this book, no matter how hard you found it to dig up those old memories from the well of your soul.
The Butterfly Girl 8i8

"Children aren't coloring books. You don't get to fill them with your favorite colors." - The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
Author
Kristin_Hannah
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Stephanie---
 
Please don't judge me by that photo.  It's been airbrushed with a sander.  :smileyhappy:  I most certainly do remember the seventies and eighties--especially the hair.    And who would have thought those clothes would make a comeback???  I'm laughing out loud about the socks scrunched down.  Whoever thought it was smart to make our shoulders look BIGGER?  The only thing worse was those peg legged stirrip pants tucked into slouchy ankle boots.  Did we WANT to look short and stocky?  Really?
 
 
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princessapr
Posts: 20
Registered: ‎02-25-2008
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

A bunch of who usually read your books are holdovers from the romance books.  I actually think the last two books, though a lot of romance readers would call them romance, had the most love in them.  The love for a child (in Magic Hour) and the love for friends (in Firefly Lane) are very strong and often last longer than most romantic love.  It's great to see books celebrate that relationship.  And it seems like every romance reader, after finishing a book, tells the author she loves a character and wants a sequel.  So, with that warning, I must say that I'd love to read more of Kate's daughter.  Does she continue on with modeling and setting the world on fire like her Aunt Tully or does she fall in love like her mom or does she do both and find a way to have it all?  Also, does she have a daughter who rebels constantly so Kate can look down on her and get her last laugh in.  :smileyhappy:
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Stephanie
Posts: 2,613
Registered: ‎10-19-2006
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Kristin,
 
Okay, you're killing me with the slouchy ankle boots!  I had forgotten those... mine were gray I believe.  :smileyvery-happy:
 
Big hair... I'm Italian, I live in humid Florida, and what can I say, no matter how hard I try, here it is 2008 and I still have poufy hair.  It starts out smooth, but expands at an alarming rate the minute I step outside.
 
The best part about Kate and Tully's younger years was reliving the "scene" the clothes, the clubs, the single working years...  the married with kids working years are a whole lot different, aren't they? 
 
Stephanie
Author
Kristin_Hannah
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Dear Streamsong--
 
Isn't it funny to think about all those old toys--the trolls, the lincoln logs, the liddle kiddles?  It was a real trek down memory lane to come up with some of that stuff, I can tell you.  :smileyhappy: 
 
I know it's difficult sometimes to write about hard subjects, but the truth is that we all face incredible challenges in our lives, and I think it's not always about how we prepare for them that matters.  Sometimes we all need to be reminded to smell the flowers along the way and keep close to the people we love.  Life is short is a lesson we've all learned too many times.  And Firefly Lane is really about that, about remembering to love our friends all the time, to forgive them when we must and seek forgiveness when we should.  And to drink margaritas and dance along the way...
 
thanks,
Kristin
Author
Kristin_Hannah
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Dear Crystal--
 
Wow!!  That's great to hear that a child of the 80's loved Firefly Lane, too.  I guess it all goes back to what I truly believe--which is that we women all live variations of a single life.  We are just so darned connected, by our choices, our ambitions, our needs.  That's really what spurred me to write this valentine to women's friendship, because we are all so alike and we need each other.  The adolescence you're describing sounds exactly like mine...except I didn't wear the legwarmers until after college... :smileyhappy:
 
thanks for posting.
 
aloha,
Kristin
Author
Kristin_Hannah
Posts: 23
Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Stephanie--
 
You won't believe this, but my slouchy boots were gray, too--with tiny little holes all through them!  :smileyhappy:  And I can totally relate to the hair thing, too, as I'm a naturally curly gal.  In Hawaii, I am constantly looking for something to hold my frizzing hair back.
 
rock on, eh?
 
Kristin
Author
Kristin_Hannah
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Registered: ‎11-15-2007
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

Hey there, again--it's great to hear from you!
 
I'm also glad to hear that I still have some holdover readers from the old romance days.  It's been more than ten years.  Now, that's loyalty.  It doesn't surprise me, though.  So many of the romance readers are like me--they read everything.  The truth is, they just love books.
 
Thanks for sticking with me.  And here's a little bit of advance scoop for you.  The next book is the most romantic thing I've ever done--and that includes the romance novels.  I hope you love it.
 
My best,
Kristin
 
ps:  My Center Stage gig is up this week, but I'd love to hear from you--and everyone else--on my blog at KristinHannah.com.  Don't be shy!  It's been great e-meeting you all.
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time452play
Posts: 11
Registered: ‎01-11-2008
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

I just bought this book and it is on my list to read.  I can't wait to see how Kristin impacts my life this time through her novel.
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TullyandKate
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Re: Kristin Hannah's Latest: Firefly Lane

I was  born in the 90's but this book touched my soul. My best friend and I have been friends now for about 8 years and when i read this book i had to send this all the way to her in college. Mind you she is not a big baby like I am when it comes to books and sob sob sob. I hope that my friend and I will eventually have the relationship that Tully and Katie have, I  would give up my life for my best friend if it came down to it, i wouldnt even stutter it would be an impulse.

I wanted to say thank you very much for showing that true friends can have up's and downs and still it lasts a lifetime!

 

-Cassie