Family secrets may shape us all, but it’s the rich, complicated layers of friendship that can save us.
Cate, Renee, and Abby have come to New York for very different reasons, and in a bustling city of millions, they are linked together through circumstance and chance.
Cate has just been named the features editor of Gloss, a high-end lifestyle magazine. It’s a professional coup, but her new job comes with more complications than Cate ever anticipated.
Her roommate Renee will do anything to nab the plum job of beauty editor at Gloss. But snide comments about Renee’s weight send her into an emotional tailspin. Soon she is taking black market diet pills—despite the racing heartbeat and trembling hands that signal she’s heading for real danger.
Then there’s Abby, whom they take in as a third roommate. Once a joyful graduate student working as a nanny part time, she abruptly fled a seemingly happy life in the D.C. suburbs. No one knows what shattered Abby—or why she left everything she once loved behind.
I seemed to have developed a massive love for women’s fiction when it’s done right. Believable characters who are a nice mixed of good and bad. Plots that not only make sense, but that I can recognize in aspects of my own life. And beautiful writing. I am so happy that These Girls is a mix of everything I love about chick-lit.
I think the thing I loved the most about this book is that each woman, on the outside, seemed to have it all together, but on the inside? Yeah, not so much. But they all assumed that the others were breezing through life. I think that a lot of us are plagued with self-doubt but don’t let on. We put our best face-forward. And really? This isn’t always the best thing to do. It wasn’t until the girls started letting their walls down that a true friendship formed and things actually started being okay.
This is a great book about female friendship. REAL female friendship. It’s messy and uncomfortable and awkward by times. But it’s genuine and true and loving, also. Everything that friendship is when it’s honest. I think a lot of readers will identify with this. I know I did.
I won’t give any of the ending away, but I loved it. LOVED IT. It wasn’t sappy or cheesy or over-done. For me, it was the perfect ending to the book. And if you are a fan of realistic chick-lit that makes you think, I know you’ll love it too.
As part of the blog tour, I was lucky enough to get Sarah to pop by the blog for a little Q & A!
Thanks so much for taking the time out to answer some questions, Sarah! Promises that I won’t make them long or boring.
Lavender Lines: These Girls is definitely about the bonds that form between women and the friendships that can anchor us. Who are some of the girls in your life that you depend on?
Sarah: I am so lucky to be surrounded by wonderful, nurturing women – in fact, I dedicated These Girls to my family of girlfriends! These days, I’m trying to focus on the relationships in my life that are positive, and dedicate my time and energy to them rather than investing time in friendships that don’t feel as healthy (we all have one or two of those relationships that we can’t quite end, don’t we?) I was reminded recently of how lucky I am when I went out for a glass of wine with two close friends. I was really stressed about multiple deadlines and I ended up leaving early. The next day, one of those friends called to offer me her appointment with a massage therapist, and the other left a tin of homemade berry muffins on my doorstep. I felt so blessed.
LL: Which character was the hardest to write?
S: My three main characters – Cate, Renee, and Abby – came pretty easily, and I think I have qualities in common with each of them. My editor asked me which was my favorite, and I had to admit it was whichever one I was writing at the time! I think I feel the most sympathy for Abby, who suddenly flees a seemingly idyllic life and comes to New York, completely shattered. What happened to her is a mystery that unfolds in the novel.
LL: Do you listen to music while you write?
S: Sometimes – although once I was in a crowded coffee shop and forgot to plug in my headphones all the way. I felt a tap on my shoulder and a guy asked me to turn down the music blaring from my laptop. (Oh, the shame – it was the Bee Gees!)
LL: Coffee or tea?
S: Both! I start the morning with tea and often switch to decaf lattes as the day progresses. I often write in coffee shops (though now I always plug in my earphones) so I feel like I have to buy something – but I’m sensitive to caffeine and can’t have too much or I’ll start pacing instead of writing. So I fake it with a decaf and load on some cinnamon sprinkles and a packet good brown sugar!
LL: What books are you currently reading?
S: I tend to read a lot of galleys – advance copies – of books that aren’t out yet, because publishers send me them to consider for a blurb. So I have a big stack of those on my nightstand, and it’s a lot of fun to glimpse books that I’ll see on the shelves in a few months. I’m also re-reading The Hunger Games because I’m so excited for the movie!
Thanks so much, and I’d love it if any readers would like to friend me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter @sarahpekkanen so we can continue chatting!
LL: Thanks again Sarah.
S: My pleasure – thanks for having me!