By Jami Attenberg
Grand Central Publishing, $15.00, 287 pages
Big-Mac, all things Jewish, and family are themes common to the Edie, Richard, and their two grown children and grandchildren. Things were always good for this family that we meet in Jami Attenberg’s new book, The Middlesteins. Edie and Richard, once having successful careers and home life, until Edie and her fixation with all-things food is ultimately the family’s undoing. Their two grown children and daughter in law try to help out and save their mother to the best of their ability, but are met with interesting results. There are parts where one will be able to relate to either Edie or Robin or another family member. When food is brought to the table, there are bound to be issues that can trigger old or new wounds. Food is more than just what was for dinner last night. Readers will thoroughly enjoy getting to know this family and all of the trial and tribulations that they meet along the way; from the twin’s joint bar and bat mitzvahs to Richard setting up his new condo with IKEA furniture.
This was my first book by the author and I liked everything about this book. A story where when family and food come together the results can be less than ideal. And where when one is trying to save their mom, in this case, might be more than was bargained for in the beginning. We have to be realistic and realize that not everyone wants to be saved, no matter how hard one tries.
Reviewed by Annie Hicks