Bittersweet, Bad Diner
One of my favorite things - Bad Diner Book Club, a group of us who meet once month at "bad diners" to discuss a book. This month we met at Ray's Family Restaurant. It definitely had the diner aesthetic but was surprisingly busy and had above average food - real(!) pineapple on the sundaes. The book up for discussion was Bittersweet by Shauna Niequest. We all agreed that there were chapters in the book that we loved; they were beautifully written and spoke to us on a deep level. We found ourselves either relating to her experiences or yearning for them. The book is particularly filled with stories of intimate, healing friendships. It left us desiring to be better friends, to go deeper, and to speak with more vulnerability. There were other chapters, however, that I struggled through. The writing seemed forced, the thoughts unclear, more rambling journal entry than poetic prose. My friend Bethany (you can read her review here) made a good point about Mrs. Niequist being a young writer who is perhaps still trying to decide which literary style best suits her voice. For the most part the book was an enjoyable read, yet not a must read. I would however recommend it to a friend who finds herself at one of life's crossroads.