Watch this video on Lindsay Hunter’s Eat Only When You’re Hungry and other bookish videos on my Read Remark booktube channel.
Eat Only When You’re Hungry by Lindsay Hunter has a few mixed reviews.
Overall, reviews are pretty positive. But some readers are turned off by the bleak story, bleak characters, and lack of progression.
The book is pretty much a hamster wheel of misery and self-destruction.
And therein lies its magic.
I’m not trying to change anyone’s mind or review. After all, it’s discourse like this that makes book reviewing so fun, right? I’m always fascinated to see the diverse experiences, views, and insight readers bring. We can have completely different experiences with the same book.
But I’ll throw in my own opinion on why Eat Only When You’re Hungry is brilliant! Here’s my full review.
And here’s why I love it:
Eat Only When You’re Hungry is a stark look at a man who’s been unraveling for most of his life and is almost out of string.
The premise is Greg’s search for his drug-addicted son, But really, we’re searching Greg himself. He’s searching inside himself, but only half-heartedly. He doesn’t have enough heart left to do the introspection that could actually bring about change.
It’s like poetry, the bleak downward spiral. He eats and eats, consuming all of the pleasures and illicit vices of life. But he will never be sated.
In that respect, I agree with the negative reviews. None of the people are likable. None are redeemable.
But that’s what makes it so good for me. Not that I revel in people’s misery, but Hunter’s depiction is dark without being a caricature. Depressing without being a tearjerker.
Greg doesn’t overtly reveal himself to us. Rather, he drops glimpses of his past here and there so we can put the pieces of his life together, as if we’re assembling the crappiest puzzle ever.
And it’s just so freaking wonderful.