Customer Reviews for

Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant

Average Rating 4
( 40 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

Something You Should Know

As soon as I started reading the book the character that stood out the most to me was Pearl, the mother of the three children. Throughout her life she went through many difficulties, including her husband leaving her, being short on money, and having to raise three kids...
As soon as I started reading the book the character that stood out the most to me was Pearl, the mother of the three children. Throughout her life she went through many difficulties, including her husband leaving her, being short on money, and having to raise three kids by herself. Throughout these experiences she stays strong and is never afraid to speak her mind. Another thing that I enjoyed in this particular book was the way it was written. The way it was narrated along with how the chapters were set up was nice to hear about one characters view points to a situation, then the other characters express their own point of views on the same situation. By having the chapters set up this way I feel that it grasps the reader¿s attention by giving more descriptive details. Along with keeping those speculating on what the other characters view point will be. The experience I had with this book was it really grabbed my attention and I never had to force myself to read it, it was actually a book that I enjoyed reading.

posted by Anonymous on August 20, 2007

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Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

If you want to read about drab, dull, stifling lives

Ok. Times were tough - her husband left her with 3 kids. Sometimes the mom was joyful and tender, other times, she went into a fitful rage and was very mean. The kids, typical: sometimes good, sometimes not good, and they did the best they could do in the conditions ...
Ok. Times were tough - her husband left her with 3 kids. Sometimes the mom was joyful and tender, other times, she went into a fitful rage and was very mean. The kids, typical: sometimes good, sometimes not good, and they did the best they could do in the conditions in which they lived and were being raised. Then, they became adults, they made their own lives, and no matter what they did as adults, you somehow relate it to what happened to them as kids. If you want to read about depression, frustration, rigidness, and read it over and over again, then this is the book for you.

posted by Anonymous on April 19, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 19, 2007

    Familiar Reality

    Anne Tyler¿s novel Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant is comprised of authentic family ups and downs relevant in any time or place. Each fully developed character is dynamic and is not all good or bad no cliché characters here (some remind me of my family members or even surprisingly of myself). For instance it is easy to identify with the struggling single mother who carries the weight of the world on her shoulders. The novel is out of the ordinary because each event is seen repetitively and through different character¿s eyes. The novel questions the elapse of time, parenting, rejection¿s effects, and the true meaning of family. It tells the truth that although one may despise his parents for how he was brought up, ironically that individual reflects the same parenting skills when he has children of his own Tyler¿s underlying humor and natural style make the novel compelling when the plot is drab. Family never goes out of style this book can teach the fundamental lessons of a ¿dysfunctional family¿ for years past and years to come. The novel examines the difference between what is perceived and what happens behind closed doors, which might make you think twice about the lives of those alleged ¿perfect families¿. The novel reveals that no such thing exists and that we should embrace what family we have been given whether good, bad, or indifferent. Tyler discloses that a family can make it without a male figure in the household love and trials are the glue that keeps the family together, not a man, despite social convictions. It was no page-turner, but it left a meaningful impression afterwards on the way I view my own personal family and was a relevant read since it hits so close to home.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2007

    Insights on the Ever-Enduring Dysfunctional Family

    Anne Tyler¿s novel Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant not only delves into, but truly explores, the somewhat controversial topic of dysfunctional families and the complicated dynamics with which they become intertwined. Although the book takes place in the mid 1900¿s, it is still relative to today¿s world, perhaps even more so now, thus ensuring that it will remain pertinent to young and seasoned readers alike. Not only are the familial aspects relevant to today¿s literature lovers, but the characters themselves are relatable as well. Every reader is certain to identify with one of the many rambunctious and memorable characters: Jenny, the last-born who constantly feels scrutinized and a desire to live up to the expectations her other siblings did not fulfill-Ezra, the spoiled and favored middle child who is left with the duty of being the parental caretaker-Cody who portrays the oldest child, forced to play the role of ¿man of the house¿ and care for his younger siblings when his mother was inadequate-or Pearl, the stressed mother simply trying to survive and provide for her children to the best of her abilities. With the basic family roles covered, Tyler ensures that most any reader will be able to connect, at least somewhat, with one of the characters and perhaps gain some insight into the viewpoints of other family members. Through these characters, Tyler lends much insight into the topic of ineffective, conflicting families, and how this can affect the courses life may take. Although this novel did not have a picture-perfect, happily-ever-after resolution, it did leave the reader with a realistic perspective of life and the many struggles one may endure. Perhaps through this truthful outlook on familial life, Tyler will leave readers with ideas on how to better understand family members, and a hope of a promising future.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2007

    It's not my type

    Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Tyler will not be read for much longer in the future. It contains questions about man's purpose and identity but does not unsettle the reader as most prasised books do. On the same level, the three children can only partially be identified with. The theme of broken families applies to many people however the characteristics of Cody, Ezra, and Jenny do not. The main message is saved till the end where it hits the reader after earlier subtle implications. As Cody watches his broken family walk toward him the idea is presented of it still being perfect. Without much insight, the story is still realistic and transcends the time period in which it takes place. There will always be what society calls untraditional families that may be missing a member, hate one another, or can never finish a dinner at a restaurant. This relatable idea is somewhat lost in the second half of the book, though, as the reader loses track of the characters when many years go by unaccounted for. The audience is trying to catch up on what happened in the gap while the main idea is being further revealed. After all this I applaud the book and recommend it to those who have the time and patience to read it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 16, 2006

    dinner at the homesick resurant review

    The book I read was called Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant, by: Anne Tyler. This book was about a women named pearl, she got married to a man named beck and they got married. Beck had a job that mad them move around a lot but pearl didn¿t mind. After a while that had 3 kids. The oldest was Cody he was wild and funny and obsessed with money. Then there was Ezra, he was a trouble maker and very clumsy but he was her favorite. Last but not least there was jenny, she was high spirited and very determined. Pearl thought everything was going well but one day beck came to her and told her he was leaving, she thought it was for business and she immediately started asking when and for how long, he interrupted her to say he mean he was leaving her. He started packing as she asked him what was wrong? And when he would want to see the children he said he wouldn¿t. he finished packing and said goodbye and then told her he would send her $50 a month, and it was over. The kids never asked and nor did she, they when about as if he was never in their lives. As they grew they came over some obstacles, if you want to know more about this book then you can read it. I really didn¿t like this book. There really wasn¿t anything very interesting ever going on it was so boring and dull I wanted to stop reading it numerous amounts of times but I decided to suck it up and finish it. I wasn¿t really able to feel like I was in the book because it was so dull and I really couldn¿t relate to a lot of the characters. The characters seemed realistic, they liked switched personalities though like for example, you would think pearl would like cook and plant flower and clean the house or something but she did all the hard work like fixing toilets and sinks that was kind of interesting I thought. I cant really say if the ending was good because I stopped reading the book I didn¿t like it! The author used dialog and like a narrative voice it was like she would explain most of what happen, maybe that made it a little more boring than it was. The author used a some vocabulary that I didn¿t really understand but that¿s because the setting in this book took place in franc so they called things different than what I am used to but I learned a few new words. The author didn¿t give a lot of tone to each person she just had them say it then said they stomped away or something like that. I think the author shouldn¿t have done as much narratation as she did I mean a little is okay but it was to much and it made the book almost dreadful to read. I would rate this book about a 3 out of 10. I didn¿t really enjoy it and it didn¿t seem to me that it had a point. If I were to recommend this book to anyone it would be someone older and wiser maybe they¿ll like it but I don¿t know all I know is that I didn¿t! I think this book was meant for older people not for kids in middle school. This book is defiantly at the bottom of my favorite books. I really didn¿t enjoy a lot of the book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2005

    An Aquired Taste

    Anne Tyler's, 'Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant,' is a plausible look into the life of a single mother. I had a love hate relationship with this novel, as the characters are extremely well developed, although at times the plot had me bored. Tyler has an extrodinary gift for exposing her characters personas. I was continually surprised, as to how she intertwines the characters lives around one central theme. Although, the plot is hard to get into at the beginning. Her languid style of writing progressively grows on you, as the book goes on.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2005

    Outstanding - One of my Fav books of all time

    I read Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant for the first time years ago. It was my 1st Anne Tyler novel and from then on I always gravitated toward her titles, fell in love with reading them. While I was reading it I was in the strangest world but one I delighted in being a part of. All her little pieces of details, wise humor and subtleness all magically fit into the perfect crescendo and hits you over the head once you have finished the book, and you are in awe. You will have to read this one again some day.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2003

    Excellent novel

    This novel was very intertaining and fun to read. Although it had a boring plot of a families miserable lives, it surely captures you and makes you think. Read it and you'll surely enjoy.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2002

    My favorite Anne Tyler book - maybe my favorite book

    This is a beautifully written, thought-provoking book. I first read it in college, and have read it several times in the years since. Like the previous reviewer said, I see more in it with each reading. I like how Anne Tyler shows us the differences between our intentions and the way our actions are perceived by others. Pearl fascinates me. Her children see her as powerful and frightening, while she feels powerless and frightened. As a mother of three children, I love where Pearl thinks about how before each child was born, she looked at each addition as back-up insurance against loss of another child, but when they were born she realized that she has only managed to increase her potential for loss. Unlike one of the other reviewers, I love the ending. It wasn't happy enough for me when I was 18, but it satisfies me at 37. It underscores all the main themes of the book (as I see them): survival, forgiveness, our need for love and acceptance, and the differences between people's perceptions of truth and reality. How Beck perceives them all as a big, happy family. I really love this book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2000

    Average book

    This book was pretty good. If you enjoy reading about family trials and tribulations, you'll enjoy it. This was my first time reading an Anne Tyler novel. She's a good author.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2000

    An Excellent Novel

    This book was very well written and very well organized! Anne Tyler did an excellent job in getting her point across. The only thing is that it has a weak ending- but the rest of the book calls you back for more!!

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