Read Café Eisenhower by Richard Natale Online

caf-eisenhower

In the early 1990s, soon after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Matthew Robins, who is grieving the sudden loss of his lover, travels to Eastern Europe to claim an inheritance from a great-uncle. He discovers a world that is strange and oddly compelling. After facilitating a romance between his new friend Olga and her beloved Nina, he becomes smitten with a young local. At OlIn the early 1990s, soon after the fall of the Iron Curtain, Matthew Robins, who is grieving the sudden loss of his lover, travels to Eastern Europe to claim an inheritance from a great-uncle. He discovers a world that is strange and oddly compelling. After facilitating a romance between his new friend Olga and her beloved Nina, he becomes smitten with a young local. At Olga’s urging, he uses part of his inheritance to open a gay café, runs afoul of the local authorities, and has to be rescued by his estranged brother. But perhaps his most startling and moving discovery is a series of journals in his uncle’s apartment, a thinly-veiled fictional account of a lifelong love affair between two men, a romance that survives war, genocide, and decades of Soviet repression....

Title : Café Eisenhower
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9781626392175
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 264 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Café Eisenhower Reviews

  • Kazza
    2019-04-05 06:00

    A nice piece of retro writing with a number of relationships being central to the story - friends, family, loved ones, note books from pre/post Nazi occupation of Eastern Europe, and the meeting of different cultures. A lot to review in two places in full. Long review on the blog if interested

  • Jennifer Lavoie
    2019-03-29 08:02

    Read for The Novel Approach.I absolutely adore historical fiction, but is it really fair to call this book “historical” when the bulk of the story takes place in the 1990s, just twenty-six years ago? I’m not sure what you’d call it, but it was an amazing book that focuses on one man, the narrator, Matthew, and his adventures in claiming an inheritance and finding himself after the death of his lover.This book has so many layers. On the surface there is Matthew, who is grieving Nathaniel, his lover and his older brother’s former best friend. The brothers are at odds with each other, not just because of Matthew’s relationship with Nathaniel. When Matthew discovers they are set to inherit property from a great-uncle in Eastern Europe, his brother agrees to let him have it, and Matthew goes out on his own to claim the money and retreat from his life for some time.When he arrives, he quickly discovers it won’t be as easy as signing some paperwork and leaving. First of all, he cannot remove the money from the country, and there’s property that cannot be sold until the current tenant passes away. So what’s Matthew to do? As he settles in to figure that out, he makes friends with Olga, who begins translation work for him, and the two discover a set of journals with an interesting story.These journals drive the secondary story of the novel. Set pre-WWII at first, and then post, the journals are a fictionalized account of his Uncle Leonard’s life. At least, that’s what it seems. So many details match up, but there’s the curious unknown. Who is the other boy in the story? Was he real? A figment of Uncle Leonard’s imagination? Olga and Matthew set to find out.Richard Natale does an excellent job of bringing both stories together so that while taking place at different times, they blend together seamlessly. I was never jarred by the switch from Matthew’s perspective to the journals. And while the book is entertaining in its own right, it also has historical elements from the European front of World War II. The perilous realities for Jews is presented in Uncle Leonard and Isaac, and my heart broke reading the journals. I longed for a happy ending, but knowing what I do of the war and the Holocaust, I didn’t hold much hope. I won’t reveal what happens, but even if Natale had written the journals on their own, I would have enjoyed them.Though I enjoyed Matthew’s story and following the journals, seeing the romance between Olga and Nina blossom also brought joy. Here is a young lesbian couple trying to find a way to be together despite the engagement of one and a society that all but condemns them. And while I enjoyed Olga at first, it was Nina, in the end, who became my favorite character of the duo. She might seem quiet and shy, but she has a lot of hidden strength!If you’re a fan of history, I highly recommend this book. It can be heartbreaking at times, but it looks at several periods in history where the LGBT and Jewish communities were persecuted. If you’re looking for something steamy, set this one aside for a later time, as there are passionate moments, but they are far from graphic. That shouldn’t dissuade you from reading this book, though, because what it lacks it heat, it makes up in heart.

  • Jeffrey Sakson
    2019-04-04 13:18

    Funny, touching, marvelously entertaining, and beautifully written, Cafe Eisenhower details an assortment of human relationships in a refreshingly non-judgmental manner. Sharply observed but compassionate, it represents a quantum leap forward for author Natale, who expands his storytelling abilities to a delightful tale played out on a much larger, time-spanning international canvas than any of his previous works. Highly recommended.

  • Elisa Rolle
    2019-04-06 11:49

    Cafe Eisenhower by Richard Natale: http://reviews-and-ramblings.dreamwid... 2015 Rainbow Awards Honorable Mention (5* from at least 1 judge)

  • The Novel Approach Reviews
    2019-03-24 06:51

    I absolutely adore historical fiction, but is it really fair to call this book “historical” when the bulk of the story takes place in the 1990s, just twenty-six years ago? I’m not sure what you’d call it, but it was an amazing book that focuses on one man, the narrator, Matthew, and his adventures in claiming an inheritance and finding himself after the death of his lover.This book has so many layers. On the surface there is Matthew, who is grieving Nathaniel, his lover and his older brother’s former best friend. The brothers are at odds with each other, not just because of Matthew’s relationship with Nathaniel. When Matthew discovers they are set to inherit property from a great-uncle in Eastern Europe, his brother agrees to let him have it, and Matthew goes out on his own to claim the money and retreat from his life for some time.When he arrives, he quickly discovers it won’t be as easy as signing some paperwork and leaving. First of all, he cannot remove the money from the country, and there’s property that cannot be sold until the current tenant passes away. So what’s Matthew to do? As he settles in to figure that out, he makes friends with Olga, who begins translation work for him, and the two discover a set of journals with an interesting story.These journals drive the secondary story of the novel. Set pre-WWII at first, and then post, the journals seems to be a fictionalized account of his Uncle Leonard’s life. At least, that’s what it seems. So many details match up, but there’s the curious unknown. Who is the other boy in the story? Was he real? A figment of Uncle Leonard’s imagination? Olga and Matthew set to find out.Richard Natale does an excellent job of bringing both stories together so that while taking place at different times, they blend together seamlessly. I was never jarred by the switch from Matthew’s perspective to the journals. And while the book is entertaining in its own right, it also has historical elements from the European front of World War II. The perilous realities for Jews is presented in Uncle Leonard and Isaac, and my heart broke reading the journals. I longed for a happy ending, but knowing what I do of the war and the Holocaust, I didn’t hold much hope. I won’t reveal what happens, but even if Natale had written the journals on their own, I would have enjoyed them.Though I enjoyed Matthew’s story and following the journals, seeing the romance between Olga and Nina blossom also brought joy. Here is a young lesbian couple trying to find a way to be together despite the engagement of one and a society that all but condemns them. And while I enjoyed Olga at first, it was Nina, in the end, who became my favorite character of the duo. She might seem quiet and shy, but she has a lot of hidden strength!If you’re a fan of history, I highly recommend this book. It can be heartbreaking at times, but it looks at several periods in history where the LGBT and Jewish communities were persecuted. If you’re looking for something steamy, set this one aside for a later time, as there are passionate moments, but they are far from graphic. That shouldn’t dissuade you from reading this book, though, because what it lacks it heat, it makes up in heart.Reviewed by Jennifer for The Novel Approachhttp://www.thenovelapproachreviews.co...

  • Nicole
    2019-04-12 09:51

    Reviewed for NetgalleyCafé Eisenhower is a heartwarming story of life after loss, and the extremes one sometimes goes to in order to move on. After the love of his life dies, Matthew Robins inherits an apartment and a business in Eastern Europe from a distant great uncle whom he’s never met. Deciding that this is the change he needs in his bleak life of mourning, he sets off on an incredible journey where he discovers that he and his long lost uncle have more in common than Matthew ever imagined. Richard Natale crafts a tale that is rich in personalities, culture, and family, no matter how anti-nuclear or dysfunctional that family may be. He made me laugh out loud seconds after I felt like crying. Switching between the present and the past which Matthew discovers in some old notebooks of his uncle’s, Natale slowly unwraps a secret that has been hidden for almost half a century. While some of the notebook scenes felt dry and a bit detached in the style they are conveyed, the rest of the story more than made up for it with great personalities and friendships that endure despite distance and betrayal. A quick, endearing read.

  • Mick Stern
    2019-03-30 07:16

    Richard Natale's new novel "Café Eisenhower" is both entertaining and thought-provoking. In fact, it is several books at once. It is a love story, a political story, a social satire, a drama, a laugh-out- loud comedy, a celebration of gay life, and critique of homophobia. The plot is simple. It is 1950-- the middle of the Cold War. Mathew is distraught after the accidental death of his longtime (male) lover. Then he discovers that he has inherited property in a small, unnamed eastern european city. He jumps on this opportunity to change his life and journeys to this unknown city to claim his legacy.. In Europe, Matthew (the protagonist) discovers an old journal written by an elderly relative about his own homosexuality, and his life of lies. These journals are powerful and convincing. They also give the novel a much needed sense of balance between tragedy and comedy. A sparkling, amusing and thoughtful book.

  • Ralph Bardsley
    2019-04-05 09:01

    I loved this book. It was a quirky adventure through a former Eastern Block backwater with plenty of twists along the way. The characters were endearing and I very much enjoyed the dynamics between them. The plot moved along quickly and took a few unexpected turns, which kept me glued to the page.

  • Richard Natale
    2019-04-07 05:53