The Girls from Ames: A Story of Women and Friendship by Jeffrey Zaslow
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
About the Book:
Meet the Ames Girls: eleven childhood friends who formed a special bond growing up in Ames, Iowa. As young women, they moved to eight different states yet managed to maintain an enduring friendship that would carry them trhough college and careers, marrage, and motherhood, dating and divorce, a child's illness, and the mysterious death of one member of the group. Capturing their remarkable story, The Girls from Ames is a testament to the deep bonds of women as they experience life's joys and challenges - and the power of friendship to triumph over heartbreak and unexpected tragedy.
The girls, now in their forties, have a lfetime of memories in common, some evocavative of their generation and some that will resonate with any woman who has ever had a friend. Photograph by photograph, recollection by recollection, occasionally with tears and often with great laughter, their sweeping and moving story is shared by Jeffey Zaslow, Wall Street Journal columnist, as he attempts to define the matchless bonds of female friendship. It demonstrates how close female relationships can shape every aspect of women's lives - their sense of themselves, their choice of men, their need for validation, their relationships with their mothers, their dreams for their daughters - and reveals how much friendships thrive, rewarding those who have committed to them.
This is the story of Karla, Kelly, Marilyn, Jane, Jenny, Karen, Cathy, Angela, Sally, Diana, and Sheila. I was so moved by this book. I haven't read a book in a long time that just consumed me like this one did. It made me sit and ponder past friendships and relationships that molded who I am. To some extent, aren't we who we are because of those childhood friendships? As I read, I kept recalling old stories from my own childhood. Ones I hadn't thought of in years...
For the most part, I liked how the book what broken up. However, there were entire chapters devoted to four of the girls, then the rest were stories and highlights of all the girls. I would have liked to have seen individual chapters on all the girls. Yes, I'm nosy. What about the dirt on the others? Their stories made me laugh and cry, envy that their relationships are still strong today.