“Firefly Lane” by Kristin Hannah

I don’t like writing reviews of books I have mixed feelings about. First, I realise that my opinion is subjective. Second, I don’t believe that sharing a not-so-favourable opinion does anything good to the world on a global scale.

I loved “The Great Alone” by Kristin Hannah. It is the book I’ll most likely reread at some point in my life since I have a habit of rereading the books I’ve loved. I know that I won’t reread “Firefly Lane”.

I should have probably picked up a different book by the author. But the consumer society we live in influences even the toughest of us, and I couldn’t resist the good deal the bookseller offered. Ebooks by bestselling authors tend to be too expensive, that’s the only justification I can offer for my actions.

So, about the book. It was interesting to read, with all kinds of twists and turns a story about everyday life should have. To some, such stories about mundane things seem boring, but to me, people’s lives are the most exciting thing to explore through books. Still, the characters’ actions and choices, the direction the plot takes after two main characters enter adulthood, kept causing frustration in me that I couldn’t suppress.

It isn’t that I couldn’t connect with the characters. I usually don’t need to like them to enjoy reading about them. The main issue for me was that they didn’t get any kind of closure. The author has hinted in a way that both main characters were happy with the choices they made in their lives. Alas, I didn’t feel it. Maybe – probably – it’s the problem of my personal perception.

In the centre of the plot, there are two women, Kate and Tully. They meet at the most vulnerable age of fourteen, absolutely different in everything, from their background to their level of popularity at school. And they become friends for life. I liked the portrait of their controversial friendship spanning over three decades. That’s how it often is in real life. Two gentle rosebuds of women rarely can stay interested in each other to stay friends for so long. Almost always, one is the leader, while the other one follows them, making certain sacrifices along the way.

The love triangle and how it played out at the end, is what hasn’t worked for me. Kate’s insecurities about her husband kept frustrating me rather than caused sympathy. And because this plot line dragged through the big part of the book, when it came to a heart-wrenching finale, I simply couldn’t automatically switch to the “and still, you’ve always been the only one whom I truly loved” idea. As I said, other readers might feel differently. But for me, it was like that.

I’m grateful to the author for showing how beautiful saying goodbye to your close one can be. The death of someone you love will always be the most painful experience in any person’s life. There will never be anything positive about it. But Kristin Hannah has drawn a picture of a perfect parting, the way it should be in modern society. We proclaim that human life is the most precious thing, the highest value. While in reality, death is treated with embarrassment, with most people averting their eyes and pretending that it’s nothing special, which makes the experience even more painful.

To sum up, the story of Tully and Kate, two women who chose different paths in their lives, is dynamic, with some heartfelt moments and a bright Hollywood movie feel. Unfortunately, it isn’t my kind of story. I don’t regret reading it, but I won’t read the sequel either.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: