This evening I was able to attend an event with Oxford Exchange Bookstore discussing The Book Eaters by Sunyi Dean.
Everyone liked how the main character was a very real person who had flaws, especially when it came to her being a mom and trying her best. One of the best and cutest parts people found about the book was the motherhood parts. Even the readers who don’t normally care for books revolving around motherhood. They loved how and where she gave birth to her son. The remarks and things said between her and her son. And how the main character, as a mother, was represented in a very human way.
Everyone loved how the story was structured, with the past and present meeting at the perfect place and clippings of real-world and fantasy-world quotes and articles at the beginning of the chapters. They felt it helped enhance the story and blend the world.
One of the biggest discussions was how in this book, they didn’t just talk about books. They also talked about video games, which brought a nice familiar aspect that lent coziness to the story.
A character everyone loved was Jarrow. They also loved how his asexuality was presented and actually recognized. It was amazing how the brother believed his sexuality compared to a lot of media and tropes where asexuality is unbelieved.
This book seemed like such a great book for bibliophiles and booksellers with all the descriptions on how certain books taste. It led us to discuss what kind of books we would eat and what they may taste like. We were thinking for horror, a thick, inky taste like blood.
This book and author both seem to have gone through many challenges. It sounds highly frustrating that so many parts of the book had to be taken out, including how it was supposed to be set in different countries. Also, how it was supposed to be a series but got condensed into one. Because of this, it left some parts feeling unfinished to some readers, while others found it fine. But I feel that the author is inspirational for tearing this book apart and still telling a decent, well-characterized story.