Some original ideas and moments of extremely good writing, but eccessively self-indulgent. The thread that connects the stories is at times barely visible. The book is trying to be too clever and that put me off. It really needs to be re-read, but I'm not sure I can be bothered....Continua
I really enjoyed this book, hard to pin point why I liked it but I think it comes gown to the eloquent language rather than a compelling plot. Glad it's made it's way onto the Orange prize shortlist, I hope it wins - mainly because I haven't read any of the others!...Continua
This book is very similar to Krauss' first book, "The History of Love"; perspectives from young and old, both sexes, the Jewish world in the center and love, old and young, interspersed throughout decades.
This one's like Jeffrey Eugenides' "Middlesex", but not as focused, and definitely not as good, despite it being fair.
Her tellings from an old man's perspective are crystal-clear. The muddiness is applied when she tells of the now, of the why's and lets me down in term of keeping the story fresh and the reader keen. At times I just wanted to press "next" and go forth to The Exciting.
And there were a few exciting, fresh moments, but not that many. Maybe it's me being jaded, having just read Palahniuk's "Rant", but I don't suspect it. Time will tell.
All in all: entertaining, a few choice paragraphs and insights, but for the most part a flower that has somewhat wilted. All it needed was fertile ground, dang it....Continua
Like Nicole Krauss' last book, the History of Love, the central connecting force in this novel is a thing -in this case a great looming desk. The story moves back and forth through time where we meet a writer who is confessing her attachment to the desk, to a woman who loves the son of a man whose father lost the desk during the Holocaust and spent the rest of his life trying to find it and to others who in one way or another are connected to the desk. But what the novel is really about is love and loss: loss of things but mostly loss of loved ones and of opportunities to love. But it is not a downer but an intricate study. An excellent writer who guides us through a labyrinth with great agility....Continua