Monday, April 18, 2016

Julie's Review: The Dinner Party

Author: Brenda Janowitz
Series: None
Publication Date: April 12, 2016
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Pages: 304
Obtained: Author/Publisher
Genre:  Contemporary Fiction
Rating: 5/5
Bottom Line: Will make you appreciate your crazy family that much more
Grab, Just get it at the library, or Remove from your TBR list? Grab!
Summary: This Passover Seder is not just any Passover Seder. Yes, there will be a quick service and then a festive meal afterwards, but this night is different from all other nights. This will be the night the Golds of Greenwich meet the Rothschilds of New York City. The Rothschilds are the stuff of legends. They control banks, own vineyards in Napa, diamond mines in Africa, and even an organic farm somewhere in the Midwest that produces the most popular Romaine lettuce consumed in this country. And now, Sylvia Gold's daughter is dating one of them. When Sylvia finds out that her youngest of three is going to bring her new boyfriend to the Seder, she's giddy. When she finds out that his parents are coming, too, she darn near faints. Making a good impression is all she thinks about. Well, almost. She still has to consider her other daughter, Sarah, who'll be coming with her less than appropriate beau and his overly dramatic Italian mother. But the drama won't stop there. Because despite the food and the wine, despite the new linen and the fresh flowers, the holidays are about family. In Brenda Janowitz's The Dinner Party, long forgotten memories come to the surface. Old grievances play out. And Sylvia Gold has to learn how to let her family go.  

Review: The Dinner Party is a hoot. I laughed out loud throughout the whole book and there were poignant moments but the message is about family, love and forgiveness. Syliva Gold is all a twitter because her youngest daughter Becca is bring a Rothschild home for Seder. For Seder! Plus his parents are coming as well so that means her house has to be up to their standard. You see the Rothschild's are old money; old banking money. It's not like the Gold's don't have a very nice house and live a great lifestyle but their money isn't old. She's bending over backwards for people she doesn't know.

You pretty much know from the get go that this Seder isn't going to turn out exactly how Sylvia hopes and that's what makes it a great book. Sylvia is so uptight and high strung that she even gets a chef to cook dinner for them and again you know that doesn't turn out well.

Sarah was my favorite character. She knows who she is except when she steps foot in her mother's house. There she feels like the awkward teenager all over again. Plus she's a little irritated at her mom for inviting these stranger when she won't invite her boyfriend's parents to join them. It's pretty evident that Sarah and Sylvia are a lot alike; therefore they butt heads a lot of the time.

Each family member and guest has their own secret to hide. Of course, they all come out at this dinner and there are of course consequences.  It's how these come out at the dinner that I found intriguing. What a better place to air all your dirty laundry than at a formal family dinner.

If you are looking for a great novel that will have you laughing out loud and appreciating your own crazy family. The Dinner Party isn't a book you will want to miss this summer.



stevenjared0853 May 24, 2016 at 3:21 AM  

Thanks for reviews about The Dinner Party! Pleased to read this interesting post. I am thinking to host a family dinner party on our 10th wedding anniversary. Looking for suitable Chicago event venues for the party.

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