8/11/2009

Blog Tour: The Friends We Keep

The back of this book offers the following as a synopsis:

"The Friends We Keep is Sarah's thoughtful account of her own experiences and those of other women in navigating friendship. Her revealing discoveries tackle the questions every woman asks:
  • Why do we long for women friends?
  • Do we need friends like we need air or water?
  • What causes cattiness, competition, and co-dependency in too many friendships?
  • Why do some friendships last forever and others only a season?
  • How do we foster friendship?
  • When is it time to let a friend go, and how do we do so?

I wish that, rather than having that as the list of things that it says she tackles that it had indicated that really those are the questions asked but left, largely, unanswered. On the one hand, it's nice to know that there are other women out there asking the same questions, but it would be really nice to have gotten some - heck, any - insight into what might be the reasons.

That isn't to say that this book is devoid of useful thoughts - it absolutely isn't! I found it a fast and fascinating read and there were some interesting thoughts about the types of friends that you see in group friendships (the nurturer, the drama queen, etc.) And it ends with the age old advice that you need to be a friend to yourself before you can be a friend to others. I just felt the back of the book took the advertising a bit too far into the realm of "promised but not delivered." (And since I doubt the author had a lot to do with the blurb on the back, I really don't consider that a reflection on the book itself.)

The thing I enjoyed the most were the stories of other women's struggles with friendships. Maybe it falls into the "misery loves company" area of life, but whatever the reason, it was worth reading just to see that there are others out there who struggle with the same experiences I have.

If the topic of friendship - particularly between groups of women - is interesting to you, then this is definitely worth a read. Just don't go into it hoping for answers.

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