Friday, March 30, 2007

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

Well, in fact, I did finish this novel last night. And I cried. It really touched me.

I feel less and less secure in the weight of my own authority as a literature critic as the years go by, so I frankly am not sure this book is a great book that everyone will love. All I know is that it moved me, and although I didn't start that way, I ended up at the end of the book with great sympathy for every main character in the book.

I browsed a few of the Amazon.com reviews of this book and I am not sure the criticisms some readers have are unearned. I can see why some might feel that almost any fictional account based in part in the events of September 11 would be exploitive. And I can understand why some readers would find Jonathan Safran Foer's prose pretentious.

But I didn't feel either of those things. Frankly, I loved his quirky style and the literary tricks he used throughout the book to make it not just a novel, not just prose, but sometimes poetry and scrapbook and in the end, an experience all its own. And I never stopped wanting to finish it, which is the real joy of this book for me. YAY! A

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