Thursday, October 22, 2009
Friends Like These
Publisher's Summary. Danny Wallace has friends. He has a wife and goes to brunch, and his new house has a couch with throw pillows. But as he nears 30, he can't help wondering about his best childhood friends, whose names he finds in a long-forgotten address book. Where are they now-and where, really, is he?
Acting on an impulse we've all had at least once, he travels from London to Berlin, Tokyo, Australia, and California, risking rejection and ridicule to show up on his old pals' doorsteps. Memories of his 1980s childhood-from Michael Jackson to Ghostbusters-overwhelm him as he meets former buddies who have blossomed into rappers and ninjas, time-traveling pioneers, mediocre restaurant managers, and even Fijian royalty.
Danny's attempt to re-befriend them all gives remarkable new resonance to the age-old mantra,"friends forever!"
Review. Danny Wallace, the perpetual boy-man, is about to turn 30. For Wallace the big 3-0 symbolizes “Adulthood, Responsibilities, and Display Cushions!” And he’s not sure he’s ready for the transition. On the eve of his thirtieth birthday, with a stroke fortuitous timing, Wallace receives a box of childhood memorabilia. While perusing through his personal collection of 80’s artifacts, Wallace discovers a long forgotten address book containing: “The Twelve” -- the names and addresses of twelve former childhood friends. Friends Like These follows Wallace’s continent- hopping race to re-discover “The Twelve” before he turns 30.
Wallace is a gifted comedic writer who knows how to deliver a story for maximum laughs. The on-going saga of ManGriff, the man- animal, he creates to outprank a former prankster-friend is laugh-out-loud hilarious! But not every re-acquaintance with one of The Twelve ends on a jocular note. Some friends are profoundly touched by Wallace’s re-entry into their lives while others are unwilling or unable to rekindle the childhood friendship.
Still every step and misstep along the odyssey to find “The Twelve” is notable. As Wallace reflects, “And those, small, lost moments – once remembered – can often mean more than you could ever guess. Like a forgotten joke, or a final hug, or a local restaurant’s fourth anniversary. In the past few months, I had a whole host of new moments to remember.”
Friends Like These is a humorous memoir with a life-affirming message!
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company, Hachette Book Group (Sep. 2, 2009), 416 pages.
Review copy provided courtesy of the Publisher.
Don't forget to enter the Friends Like These Giveaway here.