Words of Friendship

Get your phone out. After you read This, you’ll be calling your childhood best friend.

 

“He was famous, wherever he was, before he was famous all over the world,” Bernie Schein says of bestselling author Pat Conroy in the opening pages of his new book “Pat Conroy: Our Lifelong Friendship.” Schein and Conroy met in a pick-up basketball game when Schein was a senior in high school and Conroy just a “snot-nosed junior wannabe.” The two remained friends until Conroy’s death in 2016. 

Famous for “The Prince of Tides” and “The Great Santini,” among others, Conroy’s books explored complicated and often traumatic experiences and their impact on family dynamics. Through Schein’s telling, readers get a sense of the firsthand experiences Conroy lived through, that colored his fiction. Fans of Conroy’s books will have the curtain pulled back on the private life of a public person. But even if you’ve never read “The Prince of Tides” (shame on you), the book offers a humorous, frank, irreverent look at what life-long friendship means. 

Friendships rarely enjoys the same regard as romantic relationships. They are easily disposable, not worth fighting for. Schein’s book offers a true and intimate look at friendship, one that weathers ups and downs, changes and morphs, and lasts through all of it. As much as the book is an ode to a famous person, it’s also a guide on what it means to cherish a true friend. 

 

Pick up a copy of “Pat Conroy: Our Lifelong Friendship” anywhere books are sold. ​ • $25.99, Arcade Publishing, arcadepub.com.