Title: East Coast Girls by Kerry Kletter
Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction
Length: 368 pages
Book Rating: C
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
They share countless perfect memories—and one they wish they could forget.
Childhood friends Hannah, Maya, Blue and Renee share a bond that feels more like family. Growing up, they had difficult home lives, and the summers they spent together in Montauk were the happiest memories they ever made. Then, the summer after graduation, one terrible night changed everything.
Twelve years have passed since that fateful incident, and their sisterhood has drifted apart, each woman haunted by her own lost innocence. But just as they reunite in Montauk for one last summer, hoping to find happiness once more, tragedy strikes again. This time it’ll test them like never before, forcing them to confront decisions they’ve each had to live with and old secrets that refuse to stay buried.
East Coast Girls by Kerry Kletter is an intriguing novel of friendship and healing.
Twelve years after a tragedy that altered their lives, Hannah, Maya, Blue and Renee have all gone their separate ways. They are still friends but they rarely see one another. When Blue’s grandmother’s beach house is put up for sale, Maya convinces her friends to get together to celebrate their thirtieth birthdays. Although Blue is easy enough to convince, Hannah is reluctant to return to Montauk. Finally agreeing to join her friends, the women set off for a relaxing weekend together. However, unbeknownst to Blue or Hannah, Maya invited Renee to join them. Blue is furious since she has not spoken to her former best friend over the years. But Maya and Hannah are happy to see their friend despite the tension between Renee and Blue. With each of the women keeping secrets, will the weekend together heal them and their friendships?
Hannah’s life is not at all what she planned twelve years ago. She adheres to a strict schedule and relies on a plethora of medication and rituals to get through life. She and Maya are best friends but there is some friction between them over the weekend. Hannah instantly regrets agreeing to the trip and as her fears threaten to overwhelm her, will she return to the safe life she has carved out for herself?
Blue is a highly successful stockbroker whose career leaves little time for a personal life. And that is just the way she likes it since she is growing to hate spending time at home. Blue is still nursing her fury at her estranged former best friend, but she has never revealed why she stopped speaking to Renee. Not one to step out of her comfort zone, she unenthusiastically accepts an old love’s invitation to spend the evening together. Will her long held insecurities ruin Blue’s second chance for a relationship with the man she has never been able to forget?
Maya is impulsive, immature and self-centered. She flits from one job to another and relies on Blue to help her when she runs into trouble. Her latest problem is of her own making and she is in danger of losing something she holds very dear. Maya often fails to think about the consequences for her actions and she is prone to running away instead of facing her troubles head on. Maya is fiercely loyal and her heart is in the right place when she invites Renee to join them, but will this decision culminate with the results she desires?
Due to their various issues, their weekend away is anything but relaxing. Hannah’s regrets about both joining her friends and the tragedy years earlier weigh heavily and influence her every decision. Everyone is growing weary of Maya’s behavior but they are quick to forgive her poor choices. Blue is hardened and unforgiving towards Renee but she is grateful for her support. She is both excited and terrified to see her first love again but she cannot silence the negative voice inside her head. Renee is cautious but happy to see her old friends and she is tentatively hopeful the weekend together will mend the rift between her and Blue.
Alternating between different perspectives, East Coast Girls is an angsty novel that touches on several relatable topics. The characters are interesting but all of them remain stuck in the past. They are supportive of and genuinely care for each other. Over the course of their weekend, secrets are revealed and Kerry Kletter brings the novel to a hopeful conclusion.