Every Now and Then by Lesley Kagen (Book Review)

As much as I love the autumn season, a part of me always wants to hold onto summer as long as I can. So I couldn’t wait to start Every Now and Then by Lesley Kagen!

It’s a coming-of-age story set in the summer of 1960, centering around three young girls in a small town and the events that change their lives forever.

Biz, Viv, and Frankie are inseparable. They spend every summer night in their treehouse fort, playing games, telling stories, and planning their adventures. Every day, they hop on their bikes and get up to harmless hijinks around town.

But secretly, they’ve also been visiting Broadhurst, the nearby mental institution, while the patients are out in the recreation yard. Most of the patients are harmless – in fact, some they consider friends. But what the girls don’t know is that something sinister is going on at Broadhurst, and they’re about to be caught right in the middle of it.

*I received this book for free from the publisher (Alcove Press) in exchange for an honest review.

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Every Now and Then by Lesley Kagen: My Thoughts

This is a quintessential ‘small town in the summer’ coming of age story, complete with an ice cream shop, classic movie theater, Fourth of July picnic, and of course everybody knowing everybody else’s business. I was SO jealous of the girls’ treehouse fort. But as idyllic as that sounds, there’s also a sinister mystery at the core of the story which was just as intriguing!

If you’ve ever seen the movie ‘Now and Then’ with Thora Burch, Christina Ricci, and Rosie O’Donnell – it’s totally the same vibe. (If you haven’t seen it, I definitely recommend it!) I can also see similarities between this and Stand By Me (based on Stephen King’s short story The Body).

I fell in love with the characters from the beginning. The trio of girls at the center of the story are smart and feisty, with a rare sort of friendship that’s powerful and lasting. The take-no-prisoners Aunt Jane May with a hidden heart of gold was also a favorite.

Every Now and Then was a nostalgic story with a lot of heart, hitting on themes ranging from friendship, growing up, discrimination, and mental illness. Highly recommended!

Rating: 4.5 (out of 5) stars

Publication date: October 6th, 2020

Every Now and Then by Lesley Kagen book review

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