SARK (Susan Ariel Rainbow Kennedy) is the author and artist of 14 books including SARK's New Creative Companion. She is a great advocate of the spiritual practice of play and of creative self-expression. One vivid way of doing both is through friendships. Using her unique style — hand-written text surrounded by colored paintings and delightful drawings — she presents the ingredients of a "Fabulous Friendship Festival" in this charming and frolicsome paperback. The book is divided into sections on celebration, challenges, and integration.

SARK says that she has been sheltered, nourished, supported, and deeply cherished by her friends, and they have taught her plenty. First and foremost, close friends remind us to be kind to ourselves. We should be able to fully entertain and enjoy ourselves in any circumstance or place, be witnesses to our own lives without the need for constant validation, offer insights to ourselves, fill ourselves up with good things, and enjoy and feel good with companionship.

Among the many variations of friendship she describes are old friends, instant ones, neighbors, animals, phone friends, email and online buddies, couples, former lovers, siblings, and elders. She presents friendship blessings and rituals for sending love, birthday blessings, helping each other during sad times, and ending friendships with bravery.

William Hazlitt once observed: "There are no rules for friendships. It must be left to itself. We cannot force it any more than love." SARK would agree, and that's why she salutes play and spontaneity as essential ingredients in these kinds of intimate relationships. This paperback is overflowing with resources on nourishing friendships, working with anger and jealousy, and managing time and energy in friendships. We were especially in sync with SARK's musings on this relationship as our real trust funds and generators of compound energy.