Ciska's Book Chest

I am an eclectic reader with preferences for crime/thriller/suspense, historical fiction, literature and contemporary fiction. For more books and other bookish posts visit my blog at Ciska's Book Chest

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close - Jonathan Safran Foer The authorJonathan Safran Foer (born 1977) is an American writer best known for his 2002 novel Everything Is Illuminated. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife, the novelist Nicole Krauss, and their son, Sasha. The synopsisNine-year-old Oskar Schell is an inventor, amateur entomologist, Francophile, letter writer, pacifist, natural historian, percussionist, romantic, Great Explorer, jeweller, detective, vegan, and collector of butterflies. When his father is killed in the September 11th attacks on the World Trade Centre, Oskar sets out to solve the mystery of a key he discovers in his father's closet. It is a search which leads him into the lives of strangers, through the five boroughs of New York, into history, to the bombings of Dresden and Hiroshima, and on an inward journey which brings him ever closer to some kind of peace The reviewI am sure I read this book a few years ago. Though I could not really recall what it was about exactly I remember I had a problem reading it. There was something about it that made me wonder if it would be a good idea to pick this up again but as I could not remember what it was exactly I felt obliged to at least find that out. After the first 5 pages I remembered. I had a hard time reading this book cause the story was weird and going everywhere. I did not understand the whole idea behind the book the last time I read it. So I decided to continue, finish the book and see if I would get it better this time.That worked. I did get the story better this time but still am not very enthusiastic about the book. There seem to be two or maybe even three layers in this book discussing a lot of things. Example, I still do not have any idea if Oskar was behaving like he is before his loss or if it is the psychological reaction to the event. There are signs he was behaving like it before, but he also says at one point he will behave normal again once this is over. Actually the whole Oskar story already gives you a lot of feelings. He annoyed me a lot but still I felt sympathetic too and sometimes I just wanted to hit him right in the face. Next you got the grandpa and grandma story, which is a sad story on its own but is woven with Oskar's too. Both traumatized and having to deal with great loss, trying to survive together or not so together. I also had some trouble recognizing the woman in grandfathers story as Oskar's grandmother. What did become clear in this story is how important it is to actually say things out loud. Grandpa is writing things to his son which would have made his life easier if he told his wife. But the other way around too, grandma had feelings and ideas about it that had she told grandpa it would have been easier to get over things. Oskar and his mother have the same problem. Oskar does not feel like his mother understands him even though she might be on to him more than he knows.Despite all the negative feelings this book leaves me with I cannot say it is a bad book. It did make me feel things and challenged me to find the meaning of things, but I know now for sure I will not ever read it again.