The Middle Stone of Jami Attenberg Review

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Edie heart is the linchpin of her parents’ house. Even as a five-year-old she is unable as unwilling to move “a cementitious Klops” said. After a few laboriously crested steps they can easily hinplumpsen: “I’m tired … Carry me.” Her to fulfill the desire of the mother is not easy, because it has the armful of shopping bags, the family’s apartment is on the fourth floor, and the child along with a full 28 kilograms on the scales.

Unfortunately, the girl already learned to assert their desire for convenience even in those situations where some effort and insight you did the others and only good.

They launched a violent screamer, escalated him into a screaming like a banshee, opens to tears locks and reiterates its imperative with emotional emphasis. Unfortunately, the mother has not learned the strategy (in the flashes also “a tiny spark vulgarity”) to counter in an intelligent way, but runs on the contrary fully on it. She squeezes and hugs her heavy baby and begs it to, but finally quit painful (and embarrassing) wailing.

As a reward and reconciliation she puts her child a piece of freshly baked rye bread with delicious liver sausage into the beak before heaves it with all the other loads on their arms. Edi has learned for life: “food was made out of love and love of food.”

Of course, mother caring for a reason. Edie’s father previously immigrated from Ukraine a few years. From his past life there, he knows what it means to go hungry.

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Even now he puts at the family table instinctively “to delimit its territory an arm around his plate” and shoveling the food into himself, without pausing with chewing or breathing. For him and his wife, whom he had met in Chicago, means eating survival, and never intended her daughter to starve. So it any wonder that Edi eats her life as instinctive? Whether addicted or sick, she can not change their behavior, not even for the family that founded itself. She marries Richard Middle Stone, a pharmacist, have a son (Benny) and a daughter (Robin), works as a lawyer.

Edie Middle Stone is the linchpin of her family, but in a negative sense. Their intemperance quickly consumed all love, and after a few years of their heralds a memorable binge eating the end of all common family meals. With the two offspring (two and six years old) leaves Edie of a drive-in to the next, stuffed cheerfully to himself what the store offers, begrudge Richard, the hungry comes home from work to his McRib not and quarrels on end with the little ones to the last fries. The sad episode culminates in a dispute between the parents, his wife points at the end of Richard to another table where she bites in just the greasy meat mountain.

More than forty years of marriage looks Richard helplessly as Edie, the mostly venom spewing matron of hissing “Dragoon”, degenerating into an unsightly lump of black teeth in the mouth. For their own law firm after it was over thirty years of work an unacceptable burden, and she was released into early retirement. Of this, get rid of them, dreams and Richard – and physical love tells of a woman who is doing something with it with him. On the Internet, he is already looking. Richard wants a divorce.

This is in a decent Jewish community, however, an unheard of suggestion. to want to become after so many years of marriage out of the dust that is not part easily. No matter what had happened, now the bitter end you on your toes together. The rest of the family is all the more indignant than poorer health than ever goes Edie. She has severe diabetes and circulation problems. If not all pull together, they will soon gefuttert to death.

The family council convenes. First attack Robin daughter and son Benny and his wife Rachelle’s father, accuse him of selfishness and punish him where it hurts him most: He may his beloved grandchildren, the twins Josh and Emily, does not see more. Here is soon at the Bar Mitzvah festival, a huge party where the grandfather is actually a must. Finally, an all-encompassing plan is developed: the renovation project Edie …

Edie heart-middle stone is the linchpin of Jami Attenbergs ” The Middle Stone “Jami Attenberg: “The Middlesteins”.

As if Edie with all their load is not heavy enough to a Roman to lend weight and give structure equips author and a whole host of minor characters from lush with worry potential, rather than focusing on a more extensive, sophisticated illumination of the protagonist. Robins men and alcohol problems, Rachelle’s egocentrism and hyperactivity and Benny’s moral cowardice and hair loss – all of which detract from the central character.

The result is the bottom line, the portrait of a Jewish middle-class family on the outskirts of Chicago.. We are experiencing a loud chaotic, rather than bemitleidens- endearing and warm characters who revolve around Edie, to get riled about Richard and a family party opposed drive that threatens to become a disaster. Jami Attenberg tells the from several perspectives, style and narrative technique skillfully (original: episodes that possible future developments project), with some satirical highlights, but also a few weaknesses ( “Heartache” -Schmalz, frivolous sex scenes).

the plot structure, the author Edis obesity leaves with all its unpleasant side effects only in the function of a catalyst, although they should still be in truth the release of several conflicts. Thus Jami Attenberg plays a highly questionable social development with immense health, psychological, social and financial consequences rather run than to address them. In the US, the nation with the world’s leading obesity rate of 34 percent, was “The Middle Stone” a bestseller.


An entertaining, but indecisive, unnecessarily extensive novel, individually and socially significant problem our time treats too lightly. The story leaves us rather perplexed as sensible, rather indifferent as affected and more puzzled than amused.

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The Middle Stone of Jami Attenberg Review. (2019, Nov 18). Retrieved from

The Middle Stone of Jami Attenberg Review
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