Friendship, by Emily Gould, Virago, RRP£14.99, 304 pages
Emily Gould’s Brooklyn is a lonely place. On its tree-lined streets, between coffee outlets and brownstone apartments, the drama of graduate life, complete with its financial and emotional burdens, is played out among a new generation who struggle to afford the rent.
Blogger and journalist Gould’s debut novel concerns two women, Amy and Beverley, who become best friends in their twenties while at neighbouring cubicles of a nondescript office. Through pregnancy, unemployment and broken relationships, they stumble together into adulthood.
It looks at first sight to be the novelisation of Lena Dunham’s Girls yet this lightweight but sensitive novel more strongly evokes Noah Baumbach’s film, Frances Ha. Sitting in the well-mapped space that exists between young women clinging to fleeting jobs, it tracks the desperate sort of gravity by which they are pulled into each other’s lives. Friendship is less a fable of modern New York life than a warm, platonic love story.