Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close

Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman. Simon & Schuster, $26 (256p) ISBN 978-1-982111-90-8
Sow and Friedman, cohosts of the podcast Call Your Girlfriend, debut with a chatty exploration of the benefits and challenges of female friendship. Sow and Friedman describe “the spark” of their initial meeting at a mutual friend’s party in 2009, when they were both in their 20s; how shared projects and an easy, constant flow of communication led to the deeper bond of “chosen family” and the philosophy of “I don’t shine if you don’t shine.” But even as they launched a podcast based on their “Shine Theory,” the pair were going through a period marked by miscommunications and the challenges of long-distance and interracial friendships (Sow is black; Friedman is white). Reevaluating the “story of sameness” of their earlier bond, Sow and Friedman enlisted a therapist to help them sort through their issues—not a viable strategy for all, they concede, but an action that reaffirmed their mutual commitment. Though they put their own relationship front and center, the authors incorporate research from social scientists and anecdotes from other people’s lives. Readers whose own “big friendships” aren’t as inextricable as Sow and Friedman’s may balk at their insistence on, say, coordinating outfits (they call it “frog-and-toading”), but this entertaining outing shows young women how they can empower and sustain each other. (July)
Reviewed on : 05/08/2020
Release date: 07/01/2020
Genre: Nonfiction
Downloadable Audio - 978-1-7971-0711-0
Compact Disc - 978-1-7971-0713-4
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