Book info

You Knew Me When (2013)

You Knew Me When (2013)
Author
Rating
3.68 of 5 Votes: 5
ISBN
0451419448 (ISBN13: 9780451419446)
languge
English
publisher
nal
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You Knew Me When (2013)
You Knew Me When (2013)

About book: Read more reviews at What Danielle Did Next I adore books based on female friendships particularly when the characters are in their 20's and 30's as I have day to day experience of the connections and tensions that come with such bonds and the realisation that things really haven't changed much since we were teens. YOU KNEW ME WHEN tells the story of Katherine (Kitty) and Laney - bonding as 11-year-old girls over lemonades in sunshine, their friendship deepened through the emotionally fraught hormone driven teenage years until post-college when everything changed. Kitty moved away leaving best friend Laney behind altering the course of their lives. Brought back together by the death of old neighbour and confidant Luella the two must finally face their pasts in order to move on with their futures. Can broken friendships ever truly recover or will past grudges always keep them apart? There's always something about contemporary novels set on the east coast of America that attract me, whether it's the descriptions of the countryside or the society and politics but I always love this setting and YOU KNEW ME WHEN was no different. Emily Liebert's story about the dynamics of friendship was compelling. Her prose describing the emotions and hurt that have simmered under the surface for years suddenly spilling over despite the best efforts of our two main characters was excellent and kept me hooked from start to finish. At its very heart this book is a story of could've and should've. The regrets we carry with us as we get older, the sacrifices we make in order to end up where we are, not always by our own hand but sometimes the one dealt us by sheer circumstance. Katherine, a high powered executive in a cosmetics company in New York left Vermont as an uncertain and timid girl, lacking confidence but willing to take the chance to shoot for her dreams despite the cost to her personal relationships. Now older and married to her job she carries with her an air of cynicism that jars with the young Kitty we meet in flashbacks. Laney who as a child was a firecracker, determined to escape dreary, boring life in Manchester and live a sparkling, sophisticated life in New York finds herself a mother, lacking the spark she once cherished so fiercely, put-upon at work and nowhere near the person she thought she'd be at 22 although she can't deny the joy her husband and child bring her and while she may not be wealthy she is rich in other ways. Thrust back together by the death of Luella, the mysterious, glamorous neighbour who guided her charges in ways they never realised affected the course of their live, they are forced to confront both each other and themselves and examine how life carried them so far away from each other and their dreams. I loved how the novel alternated between the present and the past as we gained an insight into how Laney and Kitty's friendship both evolved and disintegrated as the events that led to Kitty's eventual departure unfolded. The emotion that fuelled their behaviour towards each other then and now was compelling to read about and it showed the fragility of friendship when in times of stress words uttered in the heat of the moment can change the course of a person's life forever. YOU KNEW ME WHEN is a sweet, captivating tale of friendship and the wishes, wants and stumbling blocks that direct its path through life's many avenues and turns and how with desire, trust and love it can evolve into something more than was once thought possible.

This was my first book by Emily, and it definitely will not be my last! I loved “You Knew Me When” and found it hard to put down-- as grabs you from the cover, and never lets you down throughout- to the ending. An ideal setting of Vermont and New York and could imagine the love within these three homes side by side in the neighborhood years ago. The author does an outstanding job of looking at each individual character in order for the reader to see all sides. The characters were nicely developed (loved Katherine), and as could so relate to her in every way, and thought Laney (brat, small minded, and very immature). I happen to be the one who left for the big city, and family or friends sometimes do not understand if they live in the same place throughout their lives. I was excited for Kitty/Katherine and glad she took this path in order to get where she wanted to be in the end. I really enjoyed Emily’s writing style, disclosing just enough to keep you hanging from Kitty’s childhood, teen years, to her NY successful career with Blend --seamlessly blending past with present. I very much enjoyed the character Luella, as it added much depth to the novel, as could envision her as glamorous, sophisticated, and the ideal role model for Kitty/Katherine. A poignant story of friendship and the struggles of sacrificing yourself for your friends, or staying true to your heart to do the right thing. Realistic choices, challenges, and obstacles we face when we leave our friends, as not everyone is the same, each with different goals and journeys. Both girls are sent on a different journey which was fitting for their individual personalities. Sometimes it takes moving away and maturity to make dreams come true. As the two friends come together with their shared inheritance (Luella’s Victorian mansion), they are forced to address their past and differences. I loved the beauty, fashion, cosmetics and style—with three different generations of women and families, reminiscent of childhood days. A novel of relationships, the bonds of friendships and family, redemption, forgiveness, reconciliation, and starting over. Definitely shows friendships can be closer than family at times and the power of true BFFs. An engaging read, I highly recommend for women of all ages. Emily has been added to my favorite author list --definitely a talented writer you will want to follow! Those Secrets We Keep 6/2/2015 When We Fall 9/2/2014
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Reviews
Romancing the Book
Reviewed by RobinBook provided by the publisher for reviewReview originally posted at Romancing the BookMs. Liebert takes us on a journey into the lives of two friends who over the years have become estranged over the years. All because Katherine or Katy to her friends, had the courage to move away, while she left Laney behind. Laney got married, became a mother and has a job at a small spa. To most this would be wonderful but, Laney resented the fact that Katy was so chic and had what to her seemed to be a glamorous job.BFF…who shared a common bond…and a neighbor in Luella who befriended both of the girls, giving Katy a mother figure as hers had died and just being a friend to Laney. They shared allot with Luella. They both were influenced by Luella. I liked that these two young girls bonded with and formed a relationship with an otherwise lonely neighbor giving her something to live for. Letting her have the chance to feel needed. Not many girls would do that in today’s society. I know in our neighborhood the kids don’t come out of their houses to help the elderly neighbor’s shovel snow or even cut their grass of ask them for help let alone sit and talk to them asking them for advice.But, for Katy and Laney…Luella was much more than a friend. I guess when Katy learned from Luella to be independent and spread her wings Laney became jealous. Over the years this tore them apart. Luella has passed away leaving a will naming both girls.These friends are both very driven…and have depth to them making them both very likeable. You feel the heartaches, betrayals, and love that they each have. The past, present and future is woven into the story in such a way that puts you right into the heart of the story as these two remember the past, disuss the present and decide what needs to be done to salvage the future as BFF’s.Ms. Liebert gave Luella an insight into each of these girls separately yet together so that she knew what each needed at any given time so she was able to help them. The insight was passed onto us the reader giving us a more real feel for the story.I enjoyed this quick, witty, very real story that tugs at your heartstrings. An easy read making you want to run over and sit down to chat with that older neighbor so that they are a little less lonely.
Julie White
I don't know if I hated this book or really enjoyed it. The characters are really shallow; from the get go I saw some Kardashian references and I almost bailed. Then a funny thing happened, I read the entire book in one day. It's a story about friendship, love and second chances, blah blah blah. Been there, done that. Read this if you love for everything to work itself out somehow, because none of this would actually happen in a million years, well not to me anyway. I did enjoy the Luella character, who I could not help but feel was actually God (or the devil) orchestrating everyone's lives. I gave it three stars because I could not put it down, maybe that was Luella at work.
Jennifer
Summary:Katherine has moved away from her sleepy town of Manchester, Vermont. Her old best friend, Laney Marten, is still stuck there. They've lost touch until an inheritance brings them back together again. The two friends have to deal with their grudges in order to come to decisions about the large Victorian mansion. Dealing with the wounds left from the past, ultimately leads to healing and a walk through memory lane.My thoughts:It's been a little while since I've indulged in a true chick lit book. I love the relationship between these two friends. We get their development from two angles. We see them as adults with all of their flaws and tensions, but we also see them as children with all of their happy memories. Of course, the conflict is about something that has happened years ago and the two must work through that in order to reunite. Friends are supposed to last forever, and this book really gives that lasting love a concentrated look. I enjoyed it and feel it would be a perfect "at the pool" read.
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