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Friends Forever: A Novel | [Danielle Steel]

Friends Forever: A Novel

Five children meet on the first day of kindergarten. In the years that follow, they become friends and more than friends. Together, they will find strength, meet challenges, face life’s adventures, endure loss, face stark realities, and open their hearts. In this moving novel, number one New York Times best-selling author Danielle Steel traces their unforgettable journey - full of tests and trials - as three boys and two girls discover the vital bonds that will last a lifetime.
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Publisher's Summary

Five children meet on the first day of kindergarten. In the years that follow, they become friends and more than friends. Together, they will find strength, meet challenges, face life’s adventures, endure loss, face stark realities, and open their hearts. In this moving novel, number one New York Times best-selling author Danielle Steel traces their unforgettable journey - full of tests and trials - as three boys and two girls discover the vital bonds that will last a lifetime.

Gabby, Billy, Izzie, Andy, and Sean - each bursting with their own personality, strikingly different looks and talents, in sports, science, and the arts. Each drawn by the magical spark of connection that happens to the young. At the exclusive Atwood School, on a bright September day, starting in kindergarten, they become an inseparable group known to outsiders as the Big Five. In this rarefied world, five families grow closer, and five children bloom beside one another, unaware of the storms gathering around them.

As they turn from grade-schoolers to teenagers, seemingly perfect lives are buffeted by unraveling families, unfortunate missteps, and losses and victories great and small. And, one by one, they turn back to the Big Five to regain their footing and their steady course. But as they emerge from Atwood and enter the college years, the way forward is neither safe nor clear. As their lives separate and diverge, the challenges and risks become greater, the losses sharper, and the right paths harder to choose, in a journey of friendship, survival, and love.

In what may be her most intricate and emotionally powerful novel yet, Danielle Steel tells a heart-wrenching, ultimately triumphant story that spans decades, weaves together a vivid cast of characters, and captures the challenges we face in life - sometimes, if we’re lucky, with a friend forever by our side.

©2012 Danielle Steel (P)2012 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.8 (163 )
5 star
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4 star
 (45)
3 star
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Overall
3.8 (141 )
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Story
4.0 (136 )
5 star
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4 star
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Anne 01-29-13
    Anne 01-29-13 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    565
    12
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    Story
    "For the Most Part Very Very Sad"
    What disappointed you about Friends Forever?

    Not much to be happy about... underlining sadness throughout


    What was most disappointing about Danielle Steel’s story?

    Concentrated on the negative most often


    Have you listened to any of Nick Podehl’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    Yes, think he is very good


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Plano, TX, United States 01-26-13
    Susan Plano, TX, United States 01-26-13 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    41
    ratings
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    Story
    "Doom and gloom"
    Would you try another book from Danielle Steel and/or Nick Podehl?

    I will not read another book from Danielle Steel. I read her in the past but her style became very repetitive and I have not read a book in at least five years, her style has grown even more stilted and without feeling. It reminded me of the writing my children did in High School. Definitely glad I listened to the book as I was multi tasking and didn't lose eight hours that I could never get back. The narrator was horrible and had no concept of voice variance. Much too monotone to be interesting.


    Has Friends Forever turned you off from other books in this genre?

    It has turned me off completely to Danielle Steel.


    What didn’t you like about Nick Podehl’s performance?

    Everything. Boring. Speech was much too chopped off. Did not know how to transition from male to female. Maybe it was the book that made him sound so bad. I will try him again.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    No


    Any additional comments?

    The book had so many possibilities as to where it went but the author took a great idea and rammed it into a wall and the book was lost after the first chapter or so. I don't need sadness and anguish in my reading, there is too much in real life and I use my reading and listening for escape and imagination not gloom and doom.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane C. Bailey Maryland 11-12-12
    Jane C. Bailey Maryland 11-12-12

    Canvasback

    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
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    8
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    "Danielle Steel never lets you down...."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    yes - interesting story, a few zingers you do not anticipate - great ending.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Friends Forever?

    Dealing with the death of Gabby.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Opening chapter scene with the kids in the classroom


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jenn 11-02-12
    Jenn 11-02-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    2
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    0
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    "good read"
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    Great story like takes you right along with them.
















    How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?

    Same


    Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

    Always full of just enough to keep you wanting more.


    What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

    Nothing


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Angie MIDWAY, KY, United States 09-25-12
    Angie MIDWAY, KY, United States 09-25-12
    ratings
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    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I thought that it was a good read..."
    What did you like about this audiobook?

    I love being able to get the the pleasure out of reading some of my favorite authors via audio since I don't have the time to sit & read as much anymore


    Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

    It is a typical Danielle Steele read


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jody Schlapper Wisconsin 09-21-12
    Jody Schlapper Wisconsin 09-21-12 Member Since 2012

    Traveling Cousins

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    6
    5
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "What a disapointment!"
    Would you try another book from Danielle Steel and/or Nick Podehl?

    NEVER! I read and owned all of Danielle Steel's earlier books. This was a terrible disapointment and the narration was AWFUL! I don't know why a man was chosen to read this. His prerformance was way over the top, too emotional, and just plain creepy.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Danielle Steel again?

    I may try Danielle Steel again, from the library. I don't think I'll be wasting anymore money on her though.


    How did the narrator detract from the book?

    As stated, his preformance was way over the top. It truly detracted from the story.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    All of that and more. I understand that life is life and death is part of it. But really?? The first was touching. The second shocking. The third? By that point I was beyond disappointed and knew I'd be writing a review.


    Any additional comments?

    Don't waste your money. This is NOT the Danielle Steel I loved so much twenty years ago. Three words to describe this book...TRASH. DISAPPOINTMENT. REGRET.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cindy Lewis Arizona 09-11-12
    Cindy Lewis Arizona 09-11-12 Member Since 2012

    Cindy

    ratings
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    1
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    Story
    "So Steel"
    What did you love best about Friends Forever?

    Predictably Danielle Steel style, but isn't that exactly what we love? This book made my raod trip go so quickly, as one "issue" after another arose in her many characters. No real twists.. no special surprises, but a lot of action, many characters, and oh so entertaining


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Not any one favorite


    Which character – as performed by Nick Podehl – was your favorite?

    again, no favorite


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    and life goes on....


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    08-21-12
    08-21-12 Member Since 2009
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    79
    1
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    Story
    "Best Friends"
    If you could sum up Friends Forever in three words, what would they be?

    lifelong bounded friendship


    What did you like best about this story?

    This story is about 5 people, who formed a strong friendship since Kindergarten. They face lave, hardships, victories and tragedies together, about survival of a friendship filled with ups and downs.
    Different from stories I have read about "friends forever", usually about two girls...example Best Friend forever by Jennifer Weiner o Forever Friends (Beaches).


    Have you listened to any of Nick Podehl’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I am not aware of it


    If you could take any character from Friends Forever out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Maybe Izzie, interesting character


    Any additional comments?

    no

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ann M. Duffy 08-03-12 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
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    30
    10
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    "Come on!!!"

    I started listening, got involved with some of the story line. Then the first shock hit!

    2 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alan Richardson, TX, United States 12-06-12
    Alan Richardson, TX, United States 12-06-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
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    0
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    "Tragedy Just to Be Tragic"
    What would have made Friends Forever better?

    At the very least indicate in the story what exactly the reader is supposed to learn as a result of all of the deaths. Outside of causing the protagonist to be sad, I don't see that any of the deaths did anything whatsoever to move this story forward. Honestly, the most meaningful piece of the story as it relates to the protagonist, and aided somewhat in my actually caring about what happened to the protagonist, occured when the protagonist and her mother reconciled (for lack of a better word) near the end.


    Has Friends Forever turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, just this author.


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    The narrator was fine.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Friends Forever?

    It is not my story to edit.


    Any additional comments?

    I was very deliberate about this purchase. I am working on a story myself that, in part, involves time period changes with my characters from teens to adults. After reading the summary of this story I was interested in how the author would handle the back and forth transition between the time periods. The story itself seemed interesting enough and I know this particular author has sold millions of books, but when the tragedies and deaths of this story began piling up with seemingly no real purpose, other than to create sadness in the life of the protagonist, it was all I could do to actually finish the story. Any really good novel will create situations and circumstances that cause the reader to truly care about the characters and what happens to them. Unfortunately this story fails to get the job done.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
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