Boy Friends

Michael Pedersen

An intimate and original memoir of love, grief and male friendship by one of Scotland’s brightest young talents.

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An intimate and original memoir of love, grief and male friendship by one of Scotland’s brightest young talents.

‘As perfect a portrait of friendship as I’ve ever read.’ STEPHEN FRY

‘Lucid, lyrical, loaded . . . A love letter to friendship.’ JACKIE KAY

‘A lovely book: bright and heartfelt, funny and refreshing.’ ANDREW O’HAGAN

‘A beautiful, moving, life-affirming book.’ IAN RANKIN

Friendships might just be the greatest love affairs of our lives . . .

In 2018 poet and author Michael Pedersen lost a cherished friend, Scott Hutchison, soon after their collective voyage into the landscape of the Scottish Highlands. Just weeks later, Michael began to write to him. As he confronts the bewildering process of grief, what starts as a love letter to one magical, coruscating human soon becomes a paean to all the gorgeous male friendships that have transformed his life.

‘Boy Friends sees Pedersen illuminate these companions with a poet’s eye, a comedian’s timing – and a lover’s care.’

‘Pedersen is an enthralling narrator and his prose is poetic, written with enough electricity that it seems to jolt off the page. It is riotously funny . . . Boy Friends opens up conversations about vulnerable subjects: the brunt of suicide, the circumstances of certain types of Scottish masculinity and where friendships fit into that.’

Critic Reviews

Enchanting and astonishingly compelling . . . A friend is a masterpiece of nature, Emerson said — and this book is as perfect a portrait of that natural masterpiece as I have ever read.

Stephen Fry
Critic Reviews

Lucid, lyrical, loaded, Boy Friends is a love letter to friendship. Michael Pedersen hauntingly captures the exhilaration and the romance of fine friendship and the terror and bewilderment at the loss of it. Boy Friends is gut-wrenching and yet gallus too - taking us on a rollercoaster journey of love and loss that makes you say to yourself, more than once, yes, that's it exactly.

Jackie Kay
Critic Reviews

Boy Friends is a lovely book: bright and heartfelt, funny and refreshing. I greatly enjoyed reading it.

Andrew O'Hagan
Critic Reviews

A beautiful, moving, life-affirming book about a beautiful, moving, life-affirming friendship.

Ian Rankin
Critic Reviews

A tender, funny rebuttal to toxic masculinity. It lifted my spirits in the way Ali Smith does.

Val McDermid
Critic Reviews

Boy Friends is an inclusive, collective hug, sharing platter of a book that takes us along for the ride . . . The words take flight and come into land, often with a laugh, on every page, and while it’s undeniably about male friendships, it’s a journey you don’t have to be a ‘boy’ to enjoy . . . life-affirming.

Janet Christie, Scotsman

MICHAEL PEDERSEN is a prize-winning Scottish poet and author. His second collection, Oyster (2017), was a collaboration with Scott Hutchison of Frightened Rabbit. He has been awarded a Robert Louis Stevenson Fellowship, among other accolades. Pedersen also co-founded Neu! Reekie!, a prize-winning arts collective known for producing cutting edge shows across Scotland and the world.

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