Tag Archive for 'Fiction'

Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer

Central: PS3606.O38 E98 2006

Every once in a while I read a book that I wish would not end. This is one of them.

Admittedly, I found the characters difficult to connect with at the start, though they immediately intrigued me. Both of the two main characters—an 11-year-old boy and an aged old man—are out of the ordinary. The narration passes back and forth between them, their stories paralleling for most of the book and finally connecting.

I developed a deep fondness for these two characters, who seem to be polar opposites—old and young, fearless and afraid, strong and delicate, mute and verbose.

The child, Oscar, still mourns his father’s death  some two years before in the World Trade Center attacks. He finds a key, and sets out on a quest to discover what it opens. He desperately hopes to find a pattern, an intention, a meaning that will bring some kind of sense to his suffering.

The old man is on a quest of his own, but revealing that would reveal too much. What I will say is that the book left me with a sweet, lingering sadness and a desire to appreciate every moment.