Title : Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Author : Jonathan Safran Foer
Genre : Historical Fiction
Nine-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.
1. Very emotional themes and story : If you know me, you probably know that I love touching, emotional stories which tug at the strings of my heart and make me feel. Feel anything, but just feel. I love the thrill and rush of a fast-paced crazy fantasy story, but emotional stories are always what I prefer. Hands down. In this aspect, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close wins. Both parallel stories are set in war settings, and the themes of mourning, grief, loss and family relationships are very well explored and portrayed. I loved both the parallel stories, both equally emotional and deep in their own contexts.
2. Beautiful portrayal of a child : I love it when books portray an age group correctly and realistically, and I loved how this book portrayed a child, his mind and his feelings, and how he deals with depression and grief. It was deeply moving, as well as thought-provoking. Oskar Schell was a wonderful character.
1. A tad bit monotonous : I couldn’t really appreciate and become attached to the writing, and I feel that it was the writing which made the book a tad bit monotonous. This is not the kind of book you can fly through, or read obsessively or continuosly, this is to be taken in in bits and pieces and devoured slowly. And I feel that the only reason why it cannot be read all at once is because the writing is tedious, and isn’t enough engrossing.
2. Lack-lustre characters : The characters, apart from Oskar himself, do not really shine and don’t have anything extraordinary about them. These are easily forgettable characters and in their defense, the best thing I can say about them is that they are realistic enough.
Adults who like historical fiction and emotional stories.
A good ‘book’or a good ‘read’?
A touching book. A good read.