Feb 07

Extremely Loud and Incredible Close

Extremely Loud and Incredible Close

by Jonathan Safran Foer

(4/5)

Adult Fiction
First Published in 2006
Publisher: Mariner Books
New York Times Bestseller

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Book Synopsis:

Oskar Schell is nine years old, and had begun a vital and secret mission that will lead him through New York’s five boroughs. Oskar has found a mysterious key that belonged to his father, who died on September 11th in the World Trade Centre. In his search for the lock that fits his key somewhere in New York, a task that seems like looking for a needle in a haystack, Oskar meets survivors of all kinds. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close is a moving, funny and healing journey.

My Book Review:

I had heard wonderful things about Extremely Loud and Incredible Close. Friends of mine had said it was one of their top 10 books of the year, so I was really looking forward to reading it.

This book suprised me. Jonathan Safran Foer is a really interesting writer. The characters he creates are out of the ordinary, and the way he reveals their story and their inner workings is delicate and intriguing.

His child character, Oskar, is hilarious and so endearing. Foer deftly balances the child’s innocence and naivety with his intelligence and acute understanding. There is one incident in the book, when Oskar is at his psychologists office, that had me laughing out loud (several times) whilst reading in public. Embarrassing, but I couldn’t help it. It was just too funny to keep inside.

Oskar’s grandfather, after the trauma of losing everything during the war, also loses his speech and is only able to communicate through writing notes in notebooks. He tattoos ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ on each palm to make communication easier for him. His journey spans many decades, and readers follow him from his youth in Dresden to the present day. His relationship with his wife is bizarre but when you learn what they have been through, understandable.

I love the layout of Extremely Loud and Incredible Close – there are photos, words circled in red pen and pages with only one sentence printed on them, scattered throughout the book.

If I compare this book to a movie, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close would be a great independent movie. It’s unique, unpredictable and poignant.

x Julie

Reading Like Rabbits

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