Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ Free Shipping
+ Free Shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
Dinner at the Center of the Earth: A novel Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 5, 2017
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover," illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Learn more
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
“Glorious…devastating…a beautiful masterpiece.”
"Nathan Englander's latest is, as usual, superb: a work of psychological precision and moral force, with an immediacy that captures both timeless human truth as well as the perplexities of the present day."
"Many-splendored...a bold, compassionate novel."
—New York Times Book Review
"A kaleidoscopic fairy tale of Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation... One of the exhilarating aspects of Dinner at the Center of the Earth is its expansive sense of space and time...The effect is to heighten events, to transcend history in favor of a more allegorical realm...Englander has built a complex structure, by which his narrative reveals itself in pieces, and the less we know in advance, the more vividly we feel its turns...with this novel he frames history as both an act and a failure of the imagination, which is to say, in inherently, and inescapably, human terms."
—Los Angeles Times
"Englander has produced a masterpiece of literary imagination that seems to mirror his own evolution."
“Equal parts political thriller and tender lamentation, the latest from Englander explores, in swirling, nonlinear fashion, Israeli-Palestinian tensions and moral conflicts… Ultimately, Englander suggests that shared humanity and fleeting moments of kindness between jailer and prisoner, spy and counterspy, hold the potential for hope, even peace.”
"The ability to see the world from both Israeli and Palestinian perspectives is what gives Dinner at the Center of the Earth its optimistic moral center. Both Israelis and Palestinians are faithful to the righteousness of their own cause, but at times, characters can see a way past this most charged of conflicts to a future of peace... Yet while the novel is optimistic, it is also realistic. The violence, and the historical memory of past violence, keeps both sides addicted to carrying out further attacks in the name of retribution. Englander’s ability to capture the almost pathological nature to ‘get even’ shines."
"Appealing... Clever, fragmented, pithy... Englander is a wise observer with an empathetic heart."
"Since Englander set out to write a thriller, he delivers all of the twists and turns, the shocks and surprises, that we are entitled to expect in that genre. But he does not disappoint the readers of his earlier work who know him for his exquisite sensibilities and the sheer power of his literary prose. For that reason, Dinner at the Center of the Earth will only expand his reach and enrich his already considerable reputation."
“A dark, profound meditation on the state of Israel and also a gripping thriller, full of twists and moral ambiguity, it is an absolute joy to read.”
Praise for Nathan Englander
“In Englander’s hands, storytelling is a transformative act. Put him alongside Singer, Carver, and Munro. Englander is, quite simply, one of the very best we have.”
“Englander tells the tangled truth of life in prose that, as ever, surprises the reader with its gnarled beauty.”
“Nathan Englander's fiction [is] always animated by a deep, vibrant core of historical resonance."
“The depth of Englander’s feeling is the thing that separates him from just about everyone. You can hear his heart thumping feverishly on every page.”
“Nathan Englander is one of those rare writers who, like Faulkner, manages to make his seemingly obsessive, insular concerns all the more universal for their specificity.”
About the Author
NATHAN ENGLANDER is the author of the novel The Ministry of Special Cases, and the story collections For the Relief of Unbearable Urges and What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank, winner of the Frank O'Connor International Short Story Award and finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His short fiction has been widely anthologized, most recently in 100 Years of the Best American Short Stories. Englander's play The Twenty-Seventh Man premiered at The Public Theater in 2012. He also translated the New American Haggadah and co-translated Etgar Keret's Suddenly a Knock on the Door. He is Distinguished Writer-in-Residence at New York University, and lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and daughter.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
For reasons that are simultaneously self-explanatory and baffling, Dinner at the Center of the Earth, has been ecstatically blurbed by Englander’s fellow log-rolling luminaries (excepting perhaps Dave Eggers’ cagey offering) who are enchanted by or ignore Englander’s portrait of women and sexuality, which seem stuck in the bedroom fantasies of a 16-year-old Yeshiva boy. Were a WASP to portray women and Jewish men this way, howls of anti-Semitism would sound like a demented shofar.
Englander’s admirers express similar awe for his prose, which includes such stylistic and syntactical gems as: “picture-perfect village” (p. 79); “evilly-perfect” (p.160); “panning for gold” (p. 161); “hangs off the first finger of her non-jeans-tugging hand” (p. 181); “crackpottitudes” (p. 158); “it’s like I have a kind of espionage-STD” (p. 119); “We’ve got ourselves a rotten egg” (p.180); “the hotel room is a chichi duplex” (p. 181); “It’s a truly decadent lunch” (p. 193); “rotted-through-with-paranoia” (p.66) – on and on without end. That minimal effort was put into editing this book is evident; the only thing copiously put into this book is nausea – ladled freely and ferociously – ad nauseam.
That Englander wished to write a different kind of spy novel is fine, even laudatory. That he displays no knowledge of espionage tradecraft – evidently preferring ignorance of it – only adds to his adolescent construction of what passes for plot and character. As just one of many examples, a gifted spy contemplating fleeing to America is told his superiors are aware he has purchased a plane ticket and replies he imagined his bosses would know, with Englander adding his protagonist has “not imagined this at all.” It beggars the imagination how such idiocies – and they are too numerous to list – got past an editor.
None of the characters come alive as individuals and, more importantly, as adults. They are adolescent notions that fail to realize any of the weak, platitudinous and immature ideas the novel offers about love, conflict, imagination, desire and betrayal. Sloppy, sappy, sentimental, poorly researched and executed, Dinner at the Center of the Earth – long before publication - should have been eighty-sixed.
I am supremely pleased to say it did not disappoint. It did not disappoint.
If you launch into Dinner and initially find the separate story lines disconcerting, my advice would be to simply let them wash over you and plunge ahead. You'll reach a point where you realize the separate story lines are coming together and that realization will be powerful and overwhelming.
Highly recommended, along with all his other work. Mr. Englander knows his words and how to use them.