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March/April 2008 > Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O'Nan

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message 1: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lbhick) | 986 comments Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O'Nan Last Night at the Lobster by Stewart O'Nan

With only a few shopping days left before Christmas and a blizzard on the way, the parking lot restaurant staple of malls, The Red Lobster, is closing its door for good at the end of the night in this Connecticut town. There's not a lot of excitement or plot surrounding this book, but the characters are wonderfully realistic. The book takes place over the course of the last day at the Lobster, and is a sentimental, touching look at how Manny the manager and the rest of his blue-collar employees go about their last day of business. This was a small novel, but it was packed full of heart and a true slice of Americana.

I gave it 4 stars and highly recommend it those who have a taste for character driven stories.

message 2: by Betsy (new)

Betsy (ebburtis) | 1288 comments Lisa, have you read any others by O'Nan, and if so, how did this compare. I have this one on my TBR list, but I was disappointed in Songs for the Missing, so now I'm not sure.

message 3: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lbhick) | 986 comments I haven't read anything else by O'Nan.

message 4: by Dottie (new)

Dottie (dottiem) | 13 comments I read that one and a rather different one that he wrote several years ago, The Speed Queen. He said that one was different from the others he had written. It is about a woman who is being executed in the morning and is being interviewed by Stephen King and - unlikely as it seems, it is very funny. I think he and King are buddies - they wrote a book about the Red Sox together.

message 5: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie I JUST picked this one up on audio and it is heading to the iPod as I type. I have been wanting to read this one for a long time, and it just so happens that I also have Songs for the Missing: A Novel checked out as well. Looks like I will be getting a nice intro to the author.

message 6: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie My review:

It's just before Christmas and the Red Lobster is closing its doors for the final time as a result of poor business. Manny, the dutiful and dedicated general manager is trying to rally his team of servers, cooks, and other assorted restaurant employees for one more day of work. Can one day actually provide enough material for a novel? Absolutely, in this case. Manny's unwavering desire to the Lobster is sweet and then simply sad as the day winds to an end with a dramatic blizzard sweeping the area.

Everyone can relate to the bad economy and its effects on the characters in the novel which I think makes it even more meaningful in 2010. The writing is simplistic and easy; this combined with the characters make for an enjoyable and quick read.

I look forward to more by O'Nan.

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