Free-Floating Hostility

Thursday, April 21, 2005

Because we Lack a Book Review Section

I went to the bookstore the other day to purchase The Kite Runner, and came away instead with Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, the latest from Jonathan Safran Foer. I read his debut, Everything is Illuminated, because Jeff told me to and I wanted to make it up to him that I still haven't got past the first hundred pages of v.. I loved it; it's an excellent novel, if a little on the self-referential-post-modern-inside-joke side. And I say this despite the knowledge that before publication, he sent letters to basically every novelist in New York sucking up for blurbs (I know because one of the novelists he attempted to give literary head to was my mom). But his second book is so good that by the time I got to page 130 I had to stop and tell Mike to read it. Now neither one of us can wait for the other to finish it first, so we're reading it together. We have to take turns reading aloud because Mike doesn't think he can read the chapters from the point of view of the 10-year-old protagonist without crying (and Mike hasn't cried since he was 18, so you could see why he'd be anxious to protect his record). He reads the parts from the grandparents' points of view instead. We'll let you know if it stays this good to the end.

1 Comment(s):

  •   Posted by Blogger Jeff'y at April 23, 2005 8:13 AM | Permanent Link to this Comment
  • (Without giving too much away,) The saddest part of the book is the Dresden letter, which would fall under Mike's domain, so be careful. I cried a number of times throughout. The last time I did that was when I read Flowers for Algernon when I was 10 or so.

    I heard Safran Foer interviewed on stage up at Columbia a couple of weeks ago and it was quite interesting (and I'm not too surprised that he's the type of person who would hit people up for blurbs). I meant to blog about his talk but it was back at the time when I was being lazy about my bloggages.

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