We gave it a B
Before you tuck into Luncheonette, you should know about porkroll. You’ll find it only in New Jersey, and it’s all over Steven Sorrentino’s memoir of the years he spent serving up the signature ham at his dad’s diner, Clint’s Corner. When his father becomes confined to a wheelchair, Sorrentino leaves NYC for West Long Branch. And he stays, bound by guilt, filial devotion, and his own fragile sense of self. Inconceivably, the old man flourishes, holding court at the Corner, triumphing over a stroke, becoming mayor. Through it all, Steven displays a surprising lack of bile: Where is his anger toward Dad? The bitterness over his never-made-it stint as an actor, or his suddenly closeted-again sexuality? Like a porkroll-egg-and-cheese without pork, Luncheonette could use more meat.