- Social Science
The vibrant manifesto on our need for friendship in the modern world.
Our best friends, gal-pals, bromances, Twitter followers, Facebook friends, long distance buddies and WhatsApp threads define us in ways we rarely openly acknowledge. There is so much about friendship we either don’t know or don’t articulate: why do some friendships last a lifetime, while others are only temporary? How do you ‘break up’ with a toxic friend? Can men and women really be platonic? And maybe the most important question: how can we live in the most interconnected age and still find ourselves stuck in the greatest loneliness epidemic of our time? It’s killing us, making us miserable and causing a public health crisis. What if meaningful friendships are the solution, not a distraction?
Kate Leaver’s much anticipated book argues that friendship can cure the modern malaise of solitude, ignorance, ill health and angst. She looks at what friendship means, how it can survive, why we need it and what we can do to get the most from it. From behavioural scientists to best mates, Kate finds extraordinary stories and research, drawing on her own experiences to create a fascinating blend of accessible ‘smart thinking’, investigative journalism, pop culture and memoir.
‘Honest and insightful… an excellent read’ Gemma Cairney, BBC Radio 1
'A lovely, lively look at the importance of friendship as an antidote to loneliness' Cathy Rentzenbrink, author of A Manual for Heartache and The Last Act of Love
‘A gorgeous book and a reminder of just how intense and special female friendship is’ Emma Gannon, author of CtrlAltDelete
‘Witty, relatable, thought-provoking. If Jon Ronson and Marian Keyes morphed into one magic person and wrote a book, this book would be it’ Rosie Waterland, author of The Anti-Cool Girl
‘Kate Leaver's book is a wide-ranging exploration of what friends mean to us – full of rich personal insights and commonsense, accompanied by a good dose of science’ Robin Dunbar, author of How Many Friends Does One Person Need?
PRAISE FOR KATE LEAVER
‘Kate's mixture of wild and stupendous imagination, emotional intelligence and honest human approach in her writing strikes chords’ Gemma Cairney, BBC1 Radio
‘Kate has a lightness of comedic touch and flair that most writers would kill for. I can always count on her to make the serious stuff funny and readable, and the actually funny stuff even funnier still’ Zing Tseng, Broadly Editor
‘So many of Kate's pieces get a huge response because they are so painfully and beautifully frank and yet so warm… and I find myself reflecting on them for a long time afterwards’ Emma Gannon, author of CtrlAltDelete and blogger at girllostincity.com