It is the summer of 1972, and Katie has just turned 18. Katie and her town, Elephant Beach, are both on the verge: Katie of adulthood, Elephant Beach of gentrification - but not yet. Elephant Beach is still gritty, working-class, close-knit. And Katie spends her time smoking and drinking with her friends, dreaming about a boy just back from Vietnam who's still fighting a battle Katie can't understand.
Judy Chicurel's exquisitely written debut evokes the atmosphere of a 1970s summer in a close-knit working class community on Long Island. For readers of Jennifer Egan and Anne Tyler. Katie and her young friends face a changing world, with prospects very different from those presented to their parents. The Vietnam War seems pointless to many but has devastated lives that remain broken even after the fighting is over.