Currently Reading: The Middlesteins

Edie Middlestein is killing herself.  The phrase "death by chocolate" comes to mind, but it's also death by liverwurst sandwich and death by dumpling and death by Big Mac.

Edie is middle-aged, weighs well over 300 pounds, and has undergone two surgeries recently related to her diabetes caused by her weight.  She is literally eating herself to death and there are no signs of her stopping.

The Middlesteins may sound like a depressing story, and while there is some sadness, there is also great humor.  Edie's struggle is taken on by her family and the novel explores how each of them, her husband and two grown children, deal with it.

It's a beautifully written story about family and how it shapes us, even when we try to avoid it at all costs.  I'm also always curious about people's relationship with food, which I see as a thing representing family, love, and happiness, but that others truly battle with in many ways, whether it be anorexia, or, as with Edie, binge-eating.

If you like satire, black humor, or dysfunctional family stories, give this one a shot.

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