The Middlesteins by Jami Attenberg

When Edie Middlestein tips over into morbid obesity, her husband leaves her and her grown children don’t really want to pick up the pieces.

The Middlesteins is a family melodrama, pure and simple. I definitely got sucked into their unhappiness, but appreciated that I never felt like I was wallowing in it. The Chicago setting came through in a fully realized way, adding another element of depth I liked (as opposed to being the generic suburbs). I didn’t necessarily identify with any of the characters, but I felt like I knew them.

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