Susanna Sonnenberg’s She Matters: A Life in Friendships Book Club

After having read Susanna Sonnenberg’s Her Last Death, I knew She Matters: A Life in Friendships, Sonnenberg’s latest memoir, would be next on the list.  Compiled of friendship vignettes which span Sonnenberg’s herstory, the beginning of each chapter urges the reader on in order to determine if the friendship in question has stood the test of time or reached its conclusion.  Sonnenberg’s brute honesty and vivid descriptions brings forth a sense of relational empathy in the reader.  These detailed realities, I hope, beg the question of readers, “Why must female relationships oftentimes be so complicated?”  What I like to refer to as the cauliflower story, Sonnenberg expertly creates the ambiance and effort put into a meal meant to please another person.  The female friend arrives and merely pushes the penne pasta with cauliflower around on her plate.  Years later, Sonnenberg discovers by chance while at the farmer’s market with said woman that her friend despises cauliflower, thus mystery solved.  For me, the absurdity of the elephant in the room, i.e the vegetable which resembles, of all body parts, a brain, reaffirms the ideal how us chicks need to be more like the guys when dealing with one another, less defensive and more open.  Thus, a fine penne with cauliflower is a must to accompany discussion of Sonnenberg’s She Matters:  A Life in Friendships, but also, perhaps, a qualifier of a genuine friendship. 

Susanna Sonnenberg

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