Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
This week’s topic: Platonic Relationships In Books (friendships, parent/child, siblings, family, etc.). This is a fun topic about something we don’t talk that much about. We’re usually so focused on the romance, and I’m definitely guilty of it too, that we don’t spend as much time dissecting friendships and happy family relationships. The topic doesn’t specify that they’re supposed to be good relationships, but that’s what I’m choosing to focus on.
I’m going with 5 friendships and 5 family relationships. Starting with the friendships, I’m picking books that feature strong groups of ladies, because I stopped having a group of girlfriends after college until I met these fab women when I lived in Maine and remembered how much better my life is with girlfriends! These ladies pulled my introverted ass out of the house when I didn’t want to go anywhere, and they understood when I really couldn’t get myself to leave. I’ve missed them terribly since moving across the country a few years ago, so today’s list is all about how important those groups of friends are for saving your sanity!
1.Kristy, Mary Anne, Dawn, Stacey, Claudia, Jessi & Mallory from The Babysitters Club, by Ann M. Martin. The OG of the girl gangs, the best friends/entrepreneurs at age 13. They fought, they made up, they babysat a lot of kids, and they inspired a killer TV show AND movie.
2. Carmen, Tibby, Lena, and Bridget from The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, by Ann Brashares. The same pair of jeans fit all four girls even though they’re all different shapes and sizes, so they decide to share them. Then they send them back and forth to each other all summer while they’re all traveling. Also inspired two movies which I enjoyed even more than the books tbh.
3. Andie, Parker, Toby, and Bri from The Unexpected Everything, by Morgan Matson. Just a realistic group of girls in high school, generally breaking off into the same groups of two. By the end of the summer, two of the friends have had a falling out, and it was sad to see and hard to read because I’ve been there. Sometimes a friendship falters, and there’s just nothing you can do to right it.
4. Paige, Tessa, Morgan, and Kayleigh from The Start of Me and You, by Emery Lord. My favorite girlfriends in any book. They are SO supportive of each other, so there for each other, and they’re really an inspiration. Here’s a favorite quote about the girls from the book:
“With our arms around each other, I almost believed that strength could travel between us like the heat of our bodies. Nothing, not even sadness, could be greater than the sum of us.”
5. Layla, Alex, Zoe, and Emma from Cherry, by Lindsey Rosin. Four best friends that make a pact to have sex for the first time during their senior year, and the pact helps to strengthen their friendship as they prepare to split up for college.
6. Maddie, Gram, and the entire extended family from The Loose Ends List, by Carrie Firestone. Gram takes them all on a “death with dignity” cruise. It’s sad, and you know the whole time that Gram won’t be coming home with everyone else, but Maddie and her cousin, her gay uncles, her supportive parents, and the rest of her crazy family are such a treat.
7. The Whole Thing Together, by Ann Brashares. My second Brashares book on the list, this time a really complicated family. In full disclosure I didn’t actually like the book, but the family dynamics are just so interesting to think about. Sasha and Ray have spent their whole lives sharing a room, toys, books, and living in the same house, but they’ve never even met. Sasha’s dad was once married to Ray’s mom, and together they had three daughters. Now there are two new families, and neither one will give up the beach house, so the families alternate staying there, still connected by the 3 older daughters. See? It’s crazy.
8. Adina, Tovah, and their mother from You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone, by Rachel Lynn Solomon. One twin sister tests positive for Huntington’s disease, the other doesn’t, and their mother is already suffering from it. Intense.
9. The Grant family from Save the Date, Morgan Matson. My second Matson book on the list, this time featuring Mom, Dad, Danny, J.J., Linnie, Mike, and Charlie. I adore these 5 siblings and their parents, and they are my very favorite part of this book. “I didn’t just get here” 4-ever.
10. The Song sisters from To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, by Jenny Han. Margot, Lara Jean, and Kitty love each other fiercely, but still fight and disagree like real sisters do. Their dad is also one of the best fictional fathers out there.
What are YOUR favorite friendships and families out there?