To My Best Friends by Sam Baker
|To My Best Friends by Sam Baker|
|Category: Women's Fiction|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: Nicci was the first of the friends to die - when she was only 36 - but she's determined to organise them after her death. An uplifting story of love, friendsip and family.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 400||Date: May 2011|
|External links: Author's website|
Nicci Morrison had always been the first of the four friends to do everything: fall in love, marry, have children (and twins at that) and develop a successful business. Then, at thirty six, she was the first to die – of cancer. Nicci was an organiser and she couldn't let the opportunity pass to dress her friends for her funeral and to bequeath into their care her most treasured possessions. You're probably thinking in terms of jewellery, or something similar, but Nicci left her friends her garden, her three-year-old daughters and her husband. I mean – just how much more difficult than that can you get?
And it is difficult. It's bad enough popping in to look after the garden when the bereaved husband is doing his best to work just a few feet away, but how do you insert yourself into the upbringing of two children when they have a perfectly good father? And how do you tell said father that his late wife has left him to you? This book treads a very fine line: it could have turned into farce or it could have been ridiculous, but it was neither. It's a wonderful story of friendship and family. It is witty, but it's also poignant and moving without ever causing you to remember where you left the tube of saccharine. With a story like this that is no easy task.
I'm not greatly into fashion and it features heavily in this book, but it never overwhelms you. It just happens to be what Nicci was good at. She even kept her clothes autobiographically – and then leaves her three friends to sort out what is to be done with them all. In the early part of the book I struggled to separate Jo from Lizzie from Mona, but they quickly developed their own personalities, as did the men in their lives.
There's a very vivid evocation of grief and the way that it changes as time goes on – and it's not just grief for Nicci, but for a parent, for relationships and for things that will never be. I hope I'm not making To My Best Friends sound too worthy and depressing because it's about as far from that as you can get. It's a book that's ultimately very uplifting.
I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.
If this book appeals the we think that you'll also enjoy The Story of Us by Felicity Everett.
You can read more book reviews or buy To My Best Friends by Sam Baker at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy To My Best Friends by Sam Baker at Amazon.com.
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