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Publisher's Summary

An InStyle 10 Books You Won't Be Able to Put Down This October

SIX FRIENDS THAT BECAME A FAMILY.

A TELEVISION SHOW THAT BECAME A PHENOMENON.

Today, Friends is remembered as an icon of ’90s comedy and the Must See TV years. But when the series debuted in 1994, no one anticipated the sensation it would become. From the first wave of Friends mania to the backlash and renaissance that followed, the show maintained an uncanny connection to its audience, who saw it both as a reflection of their own lives and an aspirational escape from reality. In the years since, Friends has evolved from prime-time megahit to nostalgic novelty, and finally, to certified classic. Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Joey and Phoebe have entered the pantheon of great television characters, and yet their stories remain relevant still.

I’ll Be There for You is a deep dive into Friends history and lore, exploring all aspects of the show, from its unlikely origins to the societal conditions that amplified its success. Journalist and pop culture expert Kelsey Miller relives the show’s most powerful moments, sheds light on its sometimes dated and problematic elements, and examines the worldwide trends that Friends catalyzed, from contemporary coffee culture to the wildly popular ’90s haircut The Rachel. Taking listeners behind the scenes, Miller traces the cast’s rise to fame and untangles the complex relationship between the actors and their characters. Weaving in revelatory interviews and personal stories, she investigates the role of celebrity media, world-changing events and the dawning of the digital age - all of which influenced both the series and its viewers.

I’ll Be There for You is the definitive retrospective of Friends, not only for fans of the series, but for anyone who’s ever wondered what it is about this show - and television comedy - that resonates so powerfully.

©2018 Kelsey Miller, LLC (P)2018 Harlequin Enterprises, Limited.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Don't be there for them

As a father who experienced Friends when it aired originally, and watching it now with my 2 sons, I was excited to hear about this book.

What a disappointment it was to sit through over 8 hours of this audio book performance.

I'm sure it's not all Amber Benson's fault.The book itself is only mediocre, including mostly stories that a fan would have heard over the past 20 years or so. But Benson's reading, coupled with some atrocious editing, made listening something of a horrible experience.

I won't give the audio book one star because it was not total rubbish. But the painful vocal inflections Benson used for the characters, particularly the male characters, and a read that made it sound like she was reading both a text book and an angry diatribe at times puts this squarely in my never listen again column.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Decent book, poorly read

The book is about Friends but more about their place in various aspects in cultural history. The author reads the first and last chapter and it’s natural and engaging. When the performer reads the rest of the book it’s robotic and sounds more like someone reading through an article for the first time in front of an audience.

If you’re looking celebrity gossip or insider info this is not the book. If you’re looking for an examination of Friends impact through different lenses of cultural history then this is a decent start. The author is a fan of the series and that bias comes through in the writing but does tough on objectivity at times.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Not what I expected

After learning of this book I was excited to give it a listen. I anticipated learning more about the genus is of the show and the migration/aggregation of the actors. While the book did include a portion of these elements these portions were entirely too short. In its place valuable book real estate was taken up by social commentary with extensive chapters on gay rights, lack of minority actors, and transvestites, and oddly a focus on how Friends failed all of those cats girlies. First part? Good. Middle? Squishy. End? A let down.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic

I absolutely loved listening to this book. I have always been a FRIENDS Superfan. Especially since it was during my childhood that the show was going on and I watched it with my mother. I’ll never forget the day when I shelled out $120 for the 10 season DVD box set. Especially when I realized that the DVDs had the entire episode, without any of the trimming or cutting out jokes that was needed for broadcasting on television and Netflix. It was like watching my favorite all-time TV show for the first time. Even with all of the special features and bonus jokes, this book has opened my eyes to Incredible the show was. I had never really thought about the cultural problematic issues with the show, I just knew that I loved it. Thank you so much for writing this book and narrating so it can be listen to on my long drive back-and-forth between states.

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Could this book BE any better?! Maybe.

As a huge fan of the show, I couldn't wait to listen to this book. As with many books, it took a few chapters to really get into the story, but after that, I just couldn't get enough! I learned backstories I never knew about, laughed along with quotes from the show and was almost brought to tears being reminded again and again of why Friends will always be there for you.

I didn't have an issue with the narration that others seemed to have, and I appreciated the greater cultural contexts that were examined with relation to several specific episodes of the show. For me, it was eye-opening to cast additional perspective on Carol and Susan's wedding, Chandler's dad, The Rachel, etc.

My main disappointment was the ending. With gender inequality and the Me Too movement so prominent in conversation today, I do see the need to bring up these issues in the show's history, but the last chapter felt contrived and out of place.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to Friends fans!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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Great fun for fans!

I don't have much more to say other than that it's a great book if you are Friend's fan.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Definitive History of Friends

The author did a great job of summarizing the show. The continuous overture to the audience that stressed the political correct side of every story became old. It was as if the author felt she had to backtrack on the show and say “oh it was sometimes racist, sexist, etc.”
The book lost all steam at the end when it shamed Hollywood. To me, I didn’t buy this book to hear about that. All that aside, I would still recommend to anyone who wants to know about Friends more.

The author should have narrated and had a softer friendlier voice than the narrator.

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a must read for any Friends fan

loved the book! it starts off with the creators and their journey to friends, successes and failures. then goes through how each of the cast members got their roles. going through the seasons of the show it comments on what shaped the story lines and made the show what it is. there's lots of things I didn't know about the show and it was awesome to hear the stories and even some social commentary every once in a while. if you're a friend's fan, this read is a must.

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Must read for Friends fans!!

If you are a fan of friends, this is a must read that will give you lots of insight into the show. Must read!

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Underwhelming

Starts strong with robust behind the scene of David Crane and Marta Kaufman’s early creative lives - morphs into what feels like a fleshed our blog post/op-ed piece afterward. Would have enjoyed much more verified research into the making of the series. We get superficial gloss and what amounts to an encomium of the great show, yet it’s thematically timestamped to 2018. It wasn’t what I was expecting and pales in comparison to other “making of” pieces.