December 21, 2022

Lit to TV: Kindred & Firefly Lane

I read the book umpteen years ago (at least 20) so I did not remember many details. I had full intention to re-read before the TV series premiere but time got away from me. (Much how it does Dana.) Good thing I remember the premise enough to follow the TV series better. Although, I suspect this is not quite the story written by Octavia E. Butler.

Kindred is the first science fiction novel written by a Black woman. This literature classic is part slave story, fantasy and historical fiction. The main character, Dana, has just celebrated her 26th birthday. She foolishly sold an inherited brownstone in New York and bought a house she only saw online across the country in Los Angeles. Right away, her decision-making skills earned a heavy side-eye. She makes other choices that make absolutely no sense and annoyed me to no end. 

Anyhoot—she begins to suddenly and inexplicably time travel to Maryland. The year is 1815. Each time she is tasked with saving a white boy named Rufus—from drowning, from suffocating, from falling off a tree. She transports back to the present just in time to save her own life. 

Time travel can get very confusing but it is the heart of Kindred. Multiple years are passing in the past, but only hours pass in the present. Dana's appearance is the same throughout. Yet it is easy to follow and eventually drew me in around the 3rd episode. I personally couldn't survive if I was transported back to slavery times and forced to accept being called the hard -er word. It still does not excuse Dana's impulsive behavior.

From what I recall, Kindred is wonderfully written. KindredFX is an entertaining binge-worthy show once you get over...well, the main character's actions throughout. Damn.

Title: Kindred 
Author: Octavia E. Butler
Cast: Mallori Johnson (Dana); Micah Stock (Kevin); David Alexander Kaplan (Rufus); Sheria Irving (Olivia); Ryan Kwanten (Thomas Weylin); Gayle Rankin (Margaret Weylin); Sophina Brown (Sarah)
Network: FX Hulu
S1 Premiere: 12.13.2022
Pub Date: June 1979
Episode Time: 1 Hour
Genre: Sci-Fi Fantasy
Edition: Paperback 
Book Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 🖤
Show Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 

Firefly Lane
Love, loss and the magic of friendship are the themes of Firefly Lane. Tully Hart and Kate Mularkey become besties at first sight. Their friendship begins in the summer of 1974. Kate is at the bottom of the social food chain until the cool new girl moves in across the street. Tully exudes ambition, confidence, beauty and brains. Kate is forever uncool, smart and boy-crazy. By the end of summer, they've become inseparable. 

This coming-of-age novel spans three decades of their friendship, love lives, careers and family happenings. There is comedy, betrayal, romance and drama. All the makings of a good chick lit book and TV series.

Season 2 on Netflix was so much better than the first season. More of Firefly Lane book was covered. (Don't bother with Fly Away, the book sequel. It was so bad that I didn't even finish.) I was surprised though how my opinions of Tully and Kate changed. I won't spoil it but the character I liked better became the character I found most annoying. After reading the books and now having watched two full seasons of the show, the friendship is quite lopsided. Firefly Lane is one of the rare instances where the TV adaptation was better than the book series! I highly recommend both.

Title: Firefly Lane
Author: Kristin Hannah
Cast: Katherine Heighl (adult Tully Hart); Alissa Skovbye (young Tully Hart); Sarah Chalke (adult Kate Mularkey); Roan Curtis (young Kate Mularkey); Ben Lawson (Johnny);  Beau Garrett (Cloud); Yael Yurman (Marah); Ignacio Serricchio (Danny)
Network: Netflix
S2 Premiere: 12.02.2022 
Pub Date: February 2008
Episode Time: 1 Hour
Genre: Drama / Chick Lit
Edition: Paperback 
Book Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 🖤
Show Rating: 🖤 🖤 🖤 🖤

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