Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

As I`ve spent Easter in Whitmore Reans and not in Norway with my family, I have found time to do a lot of coursework for University. That is the positive part.

Among a few other projects I have written a book review, I`m thinking I should post it here for comments.

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

By Jonathan Safran Foer

Review by Den Tenksomme Vraslosken


I wasn‘t in New York during the 9/11 attacks on the World Trade Centre, but having read young American novelist Jonathan Safran Foer’s latest novel, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, I now feel I have a very good idea what it must have been like.

Jonathan Safran Foer‘s debut book, “Everything is illuminated” (2002) granted him the Los Angels Times book award and was adopted into a film in 2005. He is seen as a spokesman of young Jews in America, and much have been expected of this second novel.

The story is one of how this day changed a young boy and his family. It is told through nine-year-old Oskar Schell, who‘s father died during that fateful day. The novel begins sometime after the attacks, as Oskar finds a mysterious key in his father‘s bathroom cabinet.

Oskar sets out on a journey through New York, leaving his traumatized mother and grandmother, trying to find a lock to fit the key left behind by his father.

Jonathan Safran Foer is at twenty-nine a very young novelist, and he is able to portray the innocent and fragile mind of a nine-year old. Oskar is a very intelligent young boy, and it is painful to see the horror caused by this day through the eyes of a child.

In addition to Oskar’s first person, the story is told through letters from Oskar’s grandfather to his son, Thomas, which adds to the mystery Oskar is nesting up through the course of the novel. It serves as a very successful technique in order to tell the story, and one that makes the story more trustworthy.

The book is also full of photographs and drawings, things Oskar collects through his journey. These images are probably intended to portray Oskar’s attempt to solve the mystery, but I found them distracting and feel they doesn‘t really add anything to the novel.

By the end of this story you know how that horrible day happened for all members of Oskar’s family, which closes the story very well. You are left feeling part of the pain and horror caused by this very important day in history, and if Safran Foer’s project is to make us understand this day better, I think he has probably succeeded.

4 Comments:

Blogger Polarprinsessa said...

Jeg elsker ogsaa denne boka, selv om jeg bare har lest den paa norsk.
Noen favorittsitater:
"Jeg foeler meg som hundre dollar"
"Da fikk jeg kjempetunge stoevler"
"Synet mitt er semmert"
"Jeg kunne like gjerne hatt googolplex noekler"

Googolplex e utvilsomt et av de finere ordan. Googolplex e stort og mekti. Det kunne vært en viktig Asterix-figur. Et feiende flott, men likevel ganske ubrukeli ord.

Soenn: "Googolplex?"
Pappa: "10 opphøyd i en googols potens."
Soenn: "Googol?"
Pappa: "Et ettall med hundre nuller bak."

(Dialog fra Ekstremt hoeyt & utrolig naert av Jonathan Safran Foer)

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