Since the age of twelve, McKenzie Arnold has spent every summer at Albany Beach, Delaware, with her best friends Aurora, Janine, and Lilly. The seaside house teems with thirty years of memories--some wonderful, others painful--and secrets never divulged beyond its walls. This summer may be the last they spend together, as Janine contemplates selling her family cottage.
For now, all four enjoy morning beach walks and lazy evenings on the porch, celebrating Lilly's longed-for pregnancy and offering support during McKenzie's greatest crisis. It's a time for laughter and recriminations, a time to forge a new understanding of a long-ago night when Aurora sealed their bond with one devastating act. And as the days gradually shorten, events will unfold in ways that none of them could have predicted, to make this the most momentous summer of all.
In a deeply moving novel filled with heartbreak and warmth, Colleen Faulkner explores the complex ties between four very different women as they move through life together, and apart.
Praise For Colleen Faulkner's Just Like Other Daughters
"This deeply moving story of maternal love and renewal will touch your heart. It's a celebration of the capacity of the human heart to heal itself and embrace change, beautifully written with rare insight." --Susan Wiggs, # 1 New York Times bestselling author
"Be prepared to weep tears of sorrow as well as tears of joy. This is a novel you won't soon forget." --Holly Chamberlin, author of Last Summer
"Just Like Other Daughters was so real, so honest. . .I laughed, I hoped, I cried. It's that good." --Cathy Lamb, author of Henry's Sisters
1. Would McKenzie, Janine, Lilly, and Aurora have continued
to be friends beyond middle school had it not been for
Buddy’s death? Why did they grow closer together, rather
than further apart?
2. What do you think of the way McKenzie is handling her
terminal diagnosis? Do you think it’s realistic? If you were
McKenzie, how would you respond differently?
3. Do you think that Janine has recovered from the sexual
abuse by her father or does that abused child still live in
her? Did what Aurora did to Buddy really save Janine?
4. What are your thoughts on McKenzie’s relationship with
her ex-husband, Jared? Is he a good father?
5. Do you think it’s odd that Janine chose to be a police officer
like her father? Do you think it gives her the control
she didn’t have as a child? Is law enforcement something
that’s “in your blood”?
6. Why do you think Lilly was a part of the group? What does
she add? Is she in the inner circle? Were you surprised by
her secret that only McKenzie knew about? Is it always
better to share secrets with those you love?
7. Do you think Aurora is a brave woman? Is she selfish or
unselfish? Do you think her strength is real or a facade?
Do you know someone with similar characteristics?
8. Did you think McKenzie’s daughters, Mia and Maura, behave
selfishly? Did you think they’d be okay after their
9. If you could choose two of these women to spend a girls’
weekend at a beach house with, which two would it be?
10. Do you think what happens to Aurora is an accident? Why
or why not?