The Girls Author:Elaine Kagan As intensely American as a senior prom -- a big, crowded, compelling novel about six women, best friends since high school, now in their forties and still "the girls." They've been close to each other forever. They've known each other's boyfriends and husbands-to-be. They've shared each other's most important moments. Is there anything they don'... more »t know about each other?
And then, on an ordinary Tuesday morning, one of their marriages violently crashes. Jessie Chickery, the prettiest, the most enviable of them all, shoots (in anger? in despair? in self-defense?) the husband she's always been obsessively in love with: Pete, the most irresistible guy in town -- the sexiest, the craziest, the most charming, and sometimes a little scary. A womanizer? Yes. But absolutely stalwart in time of need, important in all their lives, viscerally bound to Jessie.
Her friends are thunderstruck: Ellen -- well-meaning, home-loving, maddeningly pure of heart who told Jessie for her own good that Pete was Playing Around; smart, tough-talking, disappointed Tee; Frances, whom everybody counts on -- the actress, the New York Success who rushes home to Kansas City to stand by; Jessie's sister, Anne; Pete's sister, Anita. Coming together in their shock and grief, they let loose a torrent of feelings, secrets, memories.
And, listening to their voices, we are caught up in the richly projected texture of these close-knit American lives -- girls and boys growing up, marrying, having kids; wives and husbands being faithful and unfaithful. And we are flooded with our own memories -- of excitements and promises and dreams when we were young and immortal, and of what happens to us all as time goes by« less