Dinner with Dad: How I Found My Way Back to the Family Table

Cameron Stracher, Author . Random $22.95 (242p) ISBN 978-1-4000-6537-0

Having left behind the life of ambition-driven associates at a large law firm, which he described in his memoir Double Billing , Stracher lives comfortably with his family in Westport, Conn. However, the two-hour commute into New York City, an 80-hour work-week split between two professions, and out-of-state travel begin to take their toll. When a shared meal of black bean burritos suddenly draws together his disparate family, Stracher pledges that rather than grubbing food from subway vendors or eating takeout in his office, he will dine with his family five nights a week and prepare half of the meals himself. He simmers, sautés and skewers gourmet dinners, only to be rebuffed by his two kids, who would rather eat boxed macaroni and cheese. Only later does Stracher take such rejection in stride, realizing that feeding a family is more than "refueling"; it includes "nourishing" them, too—physically and emotionally. In the meantime, he turns into "Mad Dad," an candid self-portrayal of a loving but frustrated father who yells and stomps and mopes, creating more tension than harmony. Stracher finally recognizes success when he notices that he is no longer just present for dinner with his family but an "essential ingredient." In the end, Stracher's is a sincere and witty account of his family and his struggle to get them to the table. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/26/2007
Release date: 05/01/2007
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 242 pages - 978-0-8129-7622-9
Peanut Press/Palm Reader - 157 pages - 978-1-58836-663-4
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