“Friends for Life” examines friendship, especially when were different.

“Friends for Life” examines friendship, especially when were different.

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  1. Andrew Norriss’ “Friends for Life” is a powerful story of friendship and being true to oneself. Francis Meredith, the main character, is a boy who is interested in fashion and costuming, and this has made him a target at school. Then he meets Jessica, and his life begins to change. Unfortunately, for him, Jessica is a ghost and neither of them can figure out why he is the only one who can see her.

    When a new gal moves to town, one with behavior issues, Francis is tasked with making friends with her, introducing her at school, and generally helping out. NOT a good idea since he is the guy who makes costumes, is often bullied, and has no one to talk with at lunch. But then something interesting happens. This new girl, Andi, can also see Jessica, and is fascinated and full of questions.

    When Francis decides to trust Andi and shows him her secret room the one where he sketches and sews his new designs, he waits for her laughter and her taunting, and braces himself for the name-calling that he is used to at school. She does none of that. He warned her ahead of time that he is “different,” but Andi is not impressed. She points out that she has an uncle who works in the fashion industry, and he earns a fortune. Francis may have one room outfitted with a sewing machine and a dressmaker’s dummy, but her uncle’s whole house is like that. Norriss reminds readers that high school may not be the place where we feel the most comfortable showing our authentic selves, but it’s the place where we meet the friends who accept us as we are.

    This new gang of friends meets another who can see Jessica as a ghost, but the mystery as to why they can see her, why she returns to the hospital each evening, and what she is doing there grows deeper. Worse yet, when Jessica disappears, they don’t know where to begin searching for her. Jessica may not survive much longer as a ghost, and she is forced to reconcile with the past that can’t remember and the friends she has made.

    “Friends for Life” is the gripping story of how friendships occur in the most unlikely ways, and we find each other at just the right time.

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