The Girls From Corona del Mar; Rufi Thorpe
Knopf - July - 2014
The Girls From Corona del Mar is a novel about friendship that spans a period of about 20 years. At the heart of the story is Mia and Lorrie Ann who meet in elementary school. Their early friendship was all fun and laughter, their teen years (mostly) typical of teen girls: sun tans, boys, shopping, and blonder hair. The girls had a lot in common despite being very different in personality and family background.
Mia's mom drinks too much and Mia resents the fact that she is left to care for her younger brothers. Where Mia is inconsiderate of others, Lorrie Ann is sweet and gentle. Lorrie Ann is also beautiful, and she seems to have the "perfect" family as well. She's the girl in high school many of us were jealous of. She's the one you'd expect to have nothing but good luck and success follow her at every turn, but quite the opposite happens.
Mia is the one that make's something of her life. She goes off to Yale and later finds a loving partner as well. She travels to far and wide, but she never forgets the friend she made early in life. Lorrie's life becomes a series of tragic events, one after another, and while some people are made stronger by adversity, Lorrie fell apart. Her life quickly begins to spiral out of control. When the two meet as adults, Lorrie shows up unexpectedly, Mia wonders if she really knew or understood her long time friend at all.
It’s a beautifully written story, with fully fleshed characters. The writing is detailed and vivid and the images created are difficult to forget. Lot's of bad things happen to some of us in life, and this is that kind of story. It's a dark and gritty and it touches on some controversial subjects like abortion, disability and drug addiction. Although this book will not appeal to everyone, those who try it will remember it long after the final page is turned.
Rebecca Lowman narrated the audio version and did a good job.