Middlesex came highly recommended by just about anyone who reads good books. It's the story of Cal Stephanides, who was once Calliope Stephanides, and how that happened. But it's also a story of immigration, assimilation, Detroit and other conflicts which revolve around identity. It was painful reading at times; what can you say about a person who calls his brother "Chapter Eleven?" But there is also great love; Chapter Eleven is the quickest to renew the relationship after Calliope became Cal. It's a funny, endearing, challenging book that I enjoyed quite a lot.
The Omnivore's Dilemma is not a book I like, per se; it is a book that I'm experiencing more than I am reading. I'm only about halfway through, and I'm already finding myself rocked by a punch coming off of nearly every single page. Here's just a sampling of the thoughts I've had since beginning this book:
- Oh, shit! I'm never eating THAT again!
- You know, most municipalities allow a certain number of laying hens per household - I bet we could raise our own chickens and eat their eggs, right?
- Dad should read this book.
- Dad should NEVER read this book.
- I'll never shop at Hy-Vee again (insert Piggly Wiggly, Publix, Albertson's, whatever mega-food-mart your locality might include).
- When am I going to find the time to cook all our meals from scratch, since I don't want to eat all those frigging preservatives?