The Middlesteins

A Novel
By Jami Attenberg (Electronic Book, 2012)
For more than thirty years, Edie and Richard Middlestein shared a solid family life together in the suburbs of Chicago. But now things are splintering apart, for one reason, it seems: Edie's enormous girth. She's obsessed with food--thinking about it, eating it--and if she doesn't stop, she won't have much longer to live.

When Richard abandons his wife, it is up to the next generation to take control. Robin, their schoolteacher daughter, is determined that her father pay for leaving Edie. Benny, an easy-going, pot-smoking family man, just wants to smooth things over. And Rachelle-- a whippet thin perfectionist-- is intent on saving her mother-in-law's life, but this task proves even bigger than planning her twin children's spectacular b'nai mitzvah party. Through it all, they wonder: do Edie's devastating choices rest on her shoulders alone, or are others at fault, too?

With pitch-perfect prose, huge compassion, and sly humor, Jami Attenberg has given us an epic story of marriage, family, and obsession. The Middlesteins explores the hopes and heartbreaks of new and old love, the yearnings of Midwestern America, and our devastating, fascinating preoccupation with food.
  • Grand Central Publishing
    • Format: Electronic Book

    • Price: $9.99 US/$9.99 CAN

    • ISBN-13: 9781455507191

    • On Sale Date: 10/23/2012

    • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

    Formats Available: Hardcover Book, Trade Paperback, Electronic Book, Audiobook, Audiobook

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For more than thirty years, Edie and Richard Middlestein shared a solid family life together in the suburbs of Chicago. But now things are splintering apart, for one reason, it seems: Edie's enormous girth. She's obsessed with food--thinking about it, eating it--and if she doesn't stop, she won't have much longer to live.

When Richard abandons his wife, it is up to the next generation to take control. Robin, their schoolteacher daughter, is determined that her father pay for leaving Edie. Benny, an easy-going, pot-smoking family man, just wants to smooth things over. And Rachelle-- a whippet thin perfectionist-- is intent on saving her mother-in-law's life, but this task proves even bigger than planning her twin children's spectacular b'nai mitzvah party. Through it all, they wonder: do Edie's devastating choices rest on her shoulders alone, or are others at fault, too?

With pitch-perfect prose, huge compassion, and sly humor, Jami Attenberg has given us an epic story of marriage, family, and obsession. The Middlesteins explores the hopes and heartbreaks of new and old love, the yearnings of Midwestern America, and our devastating, fascinating preoccupation with food.

Jami Attenberg is the author of a story collection, Instant Love, and two novels, The Kept Man and The Melting Season. She has contributed essays and criticism to The New York Times, Print, Nylon, Time Out New York, BookForum, Nerve, and many other publications. She lives in New York and is originally from Chicago.
  • Praise for The Melting Season:

    "Attenberg's narrative voice - a lean, straight-ahead, deadpan tone that cuts cleanly through Catherine's hypocrisy and self-pity like a laser-guided strike - makes The Melting Season singular and disquieting." (Chicago Tribune).

  • "Attenberg's imagery is picture perfect and, many times, tragic...Her complex characters are not only relatable but share a journey we have all traveled: leaving home and discovering for the first time who we really are and where we belong." (Elle).

  • "An intelligent, moving portrait of a journey to self-awareness." (Kirkus Reviews).

  • " [Attenberg] renders poignant prose and portrays the desperate behavior of her characters with verve." (Booklist).

Product Details

The Middlesteins
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Price: $9.99 US/$9.99 CAN
  • Pages: 288
  • Physical Dimensions: 5-1/2" x 8-1/4"
  • ISBN-13: 9781455507191
  • On Sale Date: 10/23/2012
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