Eating Animals: A Memoir from one Brilliant Novelist on his Omnivore’s Dilemma

By any measure, this month we are in for a delectable treat of literary proportions. I first came upon the wonderful Jonathan Safran Foer when I read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, his exceptional novel about a young boy sent on an epic journey to understand his own heritage after losing his father in the collapse of the Twin Towers. It was a book I’ll never forget. When I saw Foer had published a memoir about his relationship with food, and his personal journey to resolve the ethical dilemmas he faced in eating animals, I did a double take. Foer? A memoir? About, of all things, the quandary of our predilection for meat amidst the quagmire of issues riddling our current food system?

This I had to see.

Amazon reviewer A. Moon sums it up: “This book was a catalyst where I wasn't looking for one. After the first 35 pages a light bulb started lighting up...and I feared my life was about to change.” 

And Publisher’s Weekly is expansive in its praise, pinpointing all the reasons I’m personally intrigued by an “exhaustively-argued” and “brilliant memoir-investigation” by one of my favorite novelists:

“On the eve of becoming a father, Foer takes all the arguments for and against vegetarianism a neurotic step beyond and, to decide how to feed his coming baby, investigates everything from the intelligence level of our most popular meat providers—cattle, pigs, and poultry—to the specious self-justifications (his own included) for eating some meat products and not others … leaving him to wrestle with the comparative weight of food's socio-cultural significance and its economic-moral-political meaning. Without pulling any punches—factory farming is given the full expose treatment—Foer combines an array of facts, astutely-written anecdotes, and his furious, inward-spinning energy to make a personal, highly entertaining take on an increasingly visible (and book-selling) moral question.”

Please join us to discuss Eating Animals, by Jonathon Safran Foer (Back Bay Books, 2010) on Sunday, July 31, from 7:00-8:30 p.m. at the Moscow Food Co-op. Remember to email bookclub@moscowfood.coop to receive email reminders about the Good Food Book Club. Eating Animals is available through your local library. If you are interested in buying the book, check out the area’s local used bookstores or visit BookPeople of Moscow where Book Club members receive a discount. For more information about the Good Food Book Club, check out the Outreach section of the Co-op website at www.moscowfood.coop.