THE BEST OF FRIENDS by Joanna Trollope

THE BEST OF FRIENDS

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KIRKUS REVIEW

From the British writer who specializes in domestic tales with an edge (A Spanish Lover, 1997, etc.), a wonderfully calibrated story of an old high-school friendship that in middle age turns suddenly treacherous and destructive. Trollope is one of those rare writers who creates fully human characters living in recognizable worlds doing regular jobs and suffering all the bitter disappointments that flesh is heir to. Gina, whose mother Vi—a character with her own fierce passions—was abandoned by the American soldier who got her pregnant, became friends with Laurence in high school in the small English town where they both lived. And even after she marries Fergus, and after Laurence marries Hilary, they remain splendidly close. Gina’s teenaged daughter Sophy and Laurence’s three sons are also good friends. And so when Fergus moves out of the beautiful home he and Gina have created, announcing that their marriage is over, he sets in motion events that almost destroy not only his own family but Laurence’s as well. A distraught Gina turns to Laurence for consolation, and Laurence, who has been feeling overwhelmed by work and family—he runs a hotel and restaurant--ardently responds. Divorces are planned. An anxious Vi, whose dear friend Dan dies in the midst of it all, watches from the side. Sophy runs off to Fergus, who, though not gay, is living with a man who loves him; and Sophy quickly realizes that life with Dad is no solution either. Laurence’s boys are equally upset, but, when Hilary decides to fight for Laurence, good sense and solid affections prevail, albeit not without compromise and unexpected change. A wise and sympathetic take on the strains and strengths that friendship provokes, by a writer who seldom strikes a wrong note. A moving, convincing, satisfying novel. (Author tour)

Pub Date: June 1st, 1998
ISBN: 0-670-87973-8
Page count: 304pp
Publisher: Viking
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15th, 1998




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