Big Friendship: How We Keep Each Other Close by Aminatou Sow and Ann Friedman

Published: July 14, 2020

Simon & Schuster

This was my Book of the Month selection for July 2020

Aminatou Sow is a writer, interviewer, and cultural commentator. She is a frequent public speaker whose talks and interviews lead to candid conversations about ambition, money, and power. Aminatou lives in Brooklyn.

Ann Friedman is a journalist, essayist, and media entrepreneur. She is a contributing editor to The Gentlewoman. Every Friday, she sends a popular email newsletter. Ann lives in Los Angeles.

“For a Big Friendship to survive, it has to adapt.”

Aminatou and Ann have been best friends for a long time. They have endured being long-distance and becoming colleagues. They have also fought their way through struggling with communicating feelings and handling prejudice. They have also found a way to shine together, which they share with their reader.

I enjoyed this book. It’s different than the recent books I’ve been reading. But as someone who is fortunate enough to have several big friendships, I found this book enlightening.

I appreciate how honest Ann and Aminatou are when discussing both the highs and lows of their lives. And I value the connection they clearly have with one another.

Several of my big friends (aka my besties) and I live long distances (CA to NoDak, CA to Wisconsin, and CA to Seattle), so I can understand the challenges between maintaining a friendship with thousands of miles and several states separating you.

But, much like Ann and Aminatou, state throughout the book, social media is a tremendous way to give time to our tribe. For us, Snapchat is an absolute treat. It allows us to stay in constant contact, and boy do we use it.

I enjoyed the concept behind this book and that it was written by two best friends who genuinely want to help others learn from their situation.

The honesty, humor, and passion throughout these pages will grab your heart and motivate you to take a hard look at yourself and maybe help you realize the effort a great friendship will take to keep it happy and healthy.

My favorite part is that this book isn’t promising you anything. It’s merely an example of what true friendship can be when both sides give and take as equally as possible.

Exploring and understanding the shine theory is such a deeply profound aspect to this book and to strengthening a relationship. It’s fascinating to see such a simple concept broken down and be used in real life. The examples provided are attainable and genuine. The love contained on these pages is so apparent and pure, and you truly learn about squad goals.

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