Firefly Lane is a book about the ups and downs of female friendships. Tully Hart and Kate Mularkey become friends during the summer of 1974. Both in the 8th grade, Kate comes from an all-American family – dinner at 6pm every night, homework at the kitchen table, and in bed by 10pm. Tully, on the other hand, is raised without any such structure. Abandoned by her drug addicted mother and raised by her grandmother, Tully is raised with little guidance and a lot of self-doubt. Kate runs into her one day at the bus stop and is immediately intrigued. Tully is everything that Kate is not – boisterous, self-confident and outgoing. They immediately hit it off and become fast friends. The story follows Tullyandkate (they literally become a “unit” throughout the turbulent years of their adolescence) through the trials and tribulations of growing up.
There’s a lot of life-lessons crammed into these 500 pages. Female friendships are a complex and amazing thing to behold. We had a great conversation about this at my book club the other night. It is very rare to find women that have that one best friend that they’ve been close to for a long time. Especially in my age group (late 20’s)… at this point many of us have graduated from college, got married, and moved on. The test of a true friendship is whether or not your relationship will weather the storms of life. I am blessed enough to say that I have been friends with my best friend since we were in the 4th grade. This book really spoke to me and made me think of her.
Tully and Kate make it through family issues, careers, starting their own families, jealousy and illness. They are lucky enough to have someone always there (even if it’s a phone call away) to share in all of the “main events” of their lives. I feel that this is something that every woman should have in their life. Everyone woman deserves a shoulder to cry on, lean on… or both.
I was deeply moved by this book. I am always a fan of a book that gets me to think about my own life. I also am a sucker for a book that tugs at my heart. Firefly Lane did both. You won’t be able to put it down. Just a tip: make sure you have some kleenex handy.