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Text Me When You Get Home: The Evolution and Triumph of Modern Female Friendship

Text Me When You Get Home: The Evolution and Triumph of Modern Female Friendship

by Kayleen Schaefer

Narrated by Lauren Fortgang

Unabridged — 6 hours, 49 minutes

Kayleen Schaefer
Text Me When You Get Home: The Evolution and Triumph of Modern Female Friendship

Text Me When You Get Home: The Evolution and Triumph of Modern Female Friendship

by Kayleen Schaefer

Narrated by Lauren Fortgang

Unabridged — 6 hours, 49 minutes

Kayleen Schaefer

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A personal and sociological examination--and ultimately a celebration--of the evolution of female friendship in pop culture and modern society

"Text me when you get home." After joyful nights out together, female friends say this to one another as a way of cementing their love. It's about safety; but more than that, it's about solidarity.

From Broad City to Big Little Lies to what women say about their own best friends, the stories we're telling about female friendship have changed. What used to be written off as infighting between mean girls or disposable relationships that would be tossed as soon as a guy came along are no longer described like that. Now, we're lifting up our female friendships to the same level as our other important relationships, saying they matter just as much as the bonds we have with our romantic partners, children, parents, or siblings.

Journalist Kayleen Schaefer relays her journey of modern female friendship: from being a competitive teenager to trying to be one of the guys in the workplace to ultimately awakening to the power of female friendship and the soulmates, girl squads, and chosen families that come with it.

Schaefer has put together a completely new sociological perspective on the way we see our friends today, one that includes interviews with dozens of other women across the country: historians, creators of the most iconic films and television shows about female friendship (and Galentine's Day!), celebrities, authors, and other experts. The end result is a validation of female friendship that's never existed before.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Praise for Text Me When You Get Home

“A memoir of female friendship issues a call to action for BFFs everywhere.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Text Me 
has the thrills and laughs of a romantic comedy, but with an inverted message: ‘There just isn't only one love story in our lives,’ Schaefer writes. If you're lucky, friends will be the protagonists in these multiple love stories. It's high time that we start seeing it that way.”—

“Schaefer traces the evolution of female friendship in this thoughtfully reported book. Its insightful cultural criticism makes for an especially valuable read in the #MeToo era.”Entertainment Weekly 

Text Me When You Get Home is journalist Kayleen Schaefer’s love letter to her friends. Schaefer rejects the idea that women’s friendships are rife with dysfunction and that women themselves are somehow dysfunctional, a concept that she shows remains strong in popular culture…Schaefer shows that, contrary to pop culture’s emphasis on catfights and frenemies, women’s friendships are stabilizing and joyful.”—The Washington Post

“[A] witty, deep memoir [that] digs into the power and the glory of female friendships...Where to start unpacking the good news that Kayleen Schaefer broadcasts in her timely, nimble, essential memoir...Every page of this book has something valuable to impart about the necessity of fostering female bonds and tending them with the same care we give to our relationships with family, spouses, and children.”—Elle

“Reading Text Me When You Get Home feels like experiencing its subject—the intimate, slow-burning, miraculously comfortable thrill of making and keeping a lifelong friend. Kayleen Schaefer’s affectionate and clear-sighted exploration of female friendship is as romantic as a movie and as honest as the conversation on the third day of a road trip; reading it is as delightful as walking into a bar on a weeknight to see your friend already seated and ordering your drink.”—Jia Tolentino, staff writer at The New Yorker

“Schaefer certainly puts friends first in Text Me When You Get Home, a love letter to the power of female friendships in a world that would rather believe women are catty. From the friendship stories of everyday women to the evolution of cultural representation of women’s friendships, this uplifting book celebrates the friends who can be just as important (or more so) than our romantic partners.”—

“Illuminating and uplifting… Text Me When You Get Home will remind you of what a good friendship is supposed to look like, and inspire you to nurture your relationships with the strong women around you.”—Bustle 

“A hopeful celebration of women's friendships.”—Kirkus Reviews
“The title speaks for itself: I constantly say those exact words to my friends when we part ways or to my sister when she goes out for a run alone...Schaefer’s work is a great addition to this trend (and your bookshelf).” —Outside Magazine 

Schaefer creates a beautiful portrait of how modern female friendship has evolved to be a positive force that is making women stronger than ever....She artfully explains how the intense bond we experience as friends carries us through many different eras of our lives and dispels the idea that female friends are less important than romantic relationships, family, or careers....You will find something in this book that will make you want to text your own person and tell her how much she means to you.”—Buzzfeed, Favorite Books of 2018

“‘Text me when you get home.’ Those six words aren't just about getting home safely at the end of the night—they're really a story about how special and fierce friendships are between women.”—NPR's Book Concierge 

“[Schaefer’s] book about the incredible, complicated bonds of female friendship is relatable, familiar, and subverts the false notion that women are predisposed to hating each other.”—Mental Floss

“This is a really good summer read to make you appreciate your friends. So just pick up a copy and you can finish it at the pool in like, a day. Just try not to cry in public.”—The Betches

Text Me When You Get Home offers a new sociological perspective—as well as a celebration—of female friendships today.”—PopSugar

“I went to an all-girls boarding school, so I thought I had a PhD in female friendship, but Text Me When You Get Home put me in my place.”—Town & Country, Editor's Pick

“I was deeply moved by this book. I cried and I laughed. I recognized myself in it. I felt raised up and also challenged. It felt like a delicious, long overdue conversation with a best friend I didn’t know I had. I will be giving this book to all my girlfriends.”—Lennon Parham, creator, writer and star of Best Friends Forever and Playing House

“Warning: this absolutely delightful and insightful book on the immense power of female friendship will make you book a trip to visit your college best friend immediately. You might even buy Beyoncé tickets. It’s that good.”—Jessica St. Clair, creator, writer and star of Best Friends Forever and Playing House

“Here’s a book to devour in two sittings....Readers of all generations will enjoy her engaging writing and may see their own friendships reflected in her stories.”Booklist

“Part social history, part personal narrative, Text Me When You Get Home is a Valentine to female friendship.”—ShelfAwareness

“A refreshing read that really gets at the heart of why portrayals on Insecure, Broad City, and everything in-between so greatly resonate.”—Bitch Media

“This in-depth look into the evolution of female friendship is one all women will benefit from this year.”—Working Mother

Library Journal

Following decades of white, middle-class couples who turned inward for companionship, Schaefer posits that modern women of this class and race are now looking outward and raising the value of friendships to that of other serious relationships. Telling someone "text me when you get home" is a way of continuing the conversation and letting friends know you care, as well as a method for friends to stay connected in one another's lives. Whereas female friendships were once stereotyped as disposable or competitive by scholars and the media, the subsiding of these classifications is the basis for Schaefer's work. The author successfully weaves the stories of her life and her mother's into a narrative of the changes that have occurred through time. She discusses her own path to modern female friendship: first as a competitive youth, then trying to fit in with a male-dominated workplace, and finally a self-proclaimed awakening to the power of female relationships. VERDICT Schaefer provides an engaging, deeply researched sociological perspective into the evolution of female friendships. Consider purchasing where women's studies topics circulate well.—Mattie Cook, Lake Odessa Comm. Lib., MI

School Library Journal

Schaefer weaves a history of female friendship from the Middle Ages to the modern day, intertwined with personal accounts and discussions of iconic duos from pop culture. The author presents compelling looks at harmful concepts, such as how the sexist "mean girls" trope reinforces stereotypes that women are catty and competitive. Readers will relate to the message that female bonds offer unique rewards. "Text me when you get home" isn't just a phrase that women say to their companions at the end of the night to ensure that everyone makes it back safely; it signifies the protectiveness that many female friends feel for one another. Unfortunately, with the exception of Broad City's Abbi and Ilana and Insecure's Issa and Molly, most of the pop culture reference are fairly dated (Designing Women, Laverne & Shirley, Ally McBeal). The pacing of the book's second half drags, but there's still plenty here to intrigue those with an interest in the topic. VERDICT Sophisticated teens will appreciate the empowering stories of support and love. An ideal purchase for larger collections where Rebecca Traister's All the Single Ladies is popular.—Kristen Thorp, Eugene Public Library, OR

Kirkus Reviews

A journalist examines the nature and impact of the friendships women form with each other.Society traditionally views female friendships as competitive and transitory. Schaefer argues that more women than ever are actively working to reclaim their relationships with each other from negative stereotyping. Drawing from popular culture, interviews with a wide range of successful female professionals and her own life, the author suggests that current trends stem in part from generational changes. A product of mid-20th-century culture, Schaefer's mother lived during a time when adult female relationships with anyone beyond children and husbands were considered "nice, but not essential." On TV and in film, bonds between women—e.g., those between the main characters of the 1980s blockbuster show Dynasty—were characterized as catty and vindictive, with women ruthlessly fighting each other over men. In the 1990s, developments like the Riot Grrrl movement and films like Thelma & Louise attempted to inspire female empowerment, but "mean girl" stereotypes—which the author found herself playing into—continued to flourish and undermine more positive depictions of female bonding. As a young career woman in the early 2000s, Schaefer, who preferred male friendships, was uninterested in "helping any other women through their lives." Her awakening came in her early 30s when she decided against marrying a long-term boyfriend. She realized that her strongest allies were other single, motivated women who were also "striving to do good work." Looking around her, she saw young women like singer Taylor Swift and Olympian Kim Vandenberg extolling female friendships and social media trends like #squadgoals and #girlsquads honoring the help and support women could give each other. Though the author focuses mostly on bonds between white females, it is still a welcome reminder during a time of political backlash against women that females are continuing to insist on "changing the rules themselves."A hopeful celebration of women's friendships.

Product Details

BN ID: 2940172074660
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Publication date: 02/06/2018
Edition description: Unabridged

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Chapter 1

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