Best Friends is a story of an unusual relationship between two gifted women who share their lives in a correspondence that spans three decades. It is autobiographical and yet it is also the memoir of a brilliant woman with remarkable vitality, whose life is continually interrupted and altered by bouts of acute schizophrenia. Overarching moments of shared experiences and gossip, Best Friends reveals a period of time, an almost distant history, filled with personal and social transformations that affected our lives. I was deeply moved by the story of Beth Bryant and writer, Yvette Nachmias-Baeu, and thought that Beth’s yearning to become a great writer were realized in the pages of Best Friends.
__ Bianca Gray, PhD Providence, RI
Yvette Nachmias-Baeu’s nonfiction memoir, Best Friends, is a moving celebration of an enduring friendship. The letters Yvette shares are powerful and held me under their sway as I read. I was frequently awed by how much Beth and Yvette did with their lives, especially at a time when most young girls lived at home until they were married. Beth’s descriptions of Ireland and the countries she visits are marvelous, and Yvette’s accounts of the West and East Coast cultures are inspiring. The Notes Yvette concludes each chapter with helped me get a full picture of the world they lived in. Reading this book has been an unforgettable experience and I’d urge anyone interested in the 1960s and 1970s to do so. Best Friends is most highly recommended.
—Jack Magnus for ReadersFavorite.com
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book of letters.what a gift of reflection, transformation and friendship! The candor and directness in the letters between Yvette and Beth are refreshing. I stayed with them and enjoyed the ride as they matured across the decades. This book is candid, poignant and heartbreaking all at once. I highly recommend this book.
__ Romina Carrillo Gutierrez, New York, NY
I did not want this book to ever end! Ir chronicles the adventures of two wonderfully articulate and funny young women, told in a series of letters written to each other over three decades starting with the tumultuous sixties. A falling out, a mental breakdown, many loves and occupations that span New York to San Francisco to London, Ireland, Israel, Europe and beyond, keep the reader completely engaged, and at the same time, reflecting on one's own experiences with life and history.
__Tony Alicata, Quincy, MA
I finished this book last night. As I got towards the end, I couldn't put it down. It is a unique and amazing memoir that I don't think I'll ever forget. The letters alone allow us into the events, personal experiences, and psyche of two very remarkable individuals as well as the era in which they lived. The layout with the notes at the end of each chapter providing the reader the information on cited people,places, and events was very well done. This book is more than a memoir. It connects to the human soul. I loved it!
__Theresa Schimmel, Rhode Island
Best Friends is one of the most unique and beautiful books I have ever read courtesy of the exceptional author, Yvette Nachmias-Baeu. Best Friends is a book that is hard to describe because it is part memoir, part autobiography, and part history thanks to the many real-life historical events that are explored throughout the book.
Best Friends is a book I was desperate to read ever since discovering it because the plot alludes to a poignant journey of friendship and mental illness. Throughout the book, she will share letters which tell the story of her and her friend Beth’s lives. The letters exchanged between the two were written over twenty-seven years and will take the reader on an expansive journey from San Francisco to New York, and beyond, throughout many decades. Together the two had many adventures and were involved in the art and political scene in the sixties, which introduced them to many stars including Dustin Hoffman and Bob Dylan.
The reader is taken on a profoundly moving trip, especially because so much of it is shared through letters which are in themselves personal and poignant, making the book even more moving. If you are a reader who loves to be taken on poignant journeys and learn of key historical events through the eyes of people who were there, then Best Friends is for you and should not be missed!
Yvette Nachmias-Baeu’s story is an exceptional one that will speak volumes to many readers, especially to those that lived in the same era, experiencing the same events or those that have been touched by Schizophrenia. The story, at times, is incredibly profound, is still an inspiring one because the women the reader is introduced to are phenomenal and will inspire readers for a long time. Yvette, as well as Beth, are truly wonderful women, not only for their incredible writing but also for Yvette's reasons for sharing her story.
Best Friends is an informative, well-written memoir with words that flow beautifully throughout, so I have no choice but to award this stunning book a brilliant five stars. Best Friends will make the perfect read for you, so do not miss this book!
__Ann Aimee,United Kingdom, Red-Headed Book Lover Blog