I love books.
I just finished reading Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, by Jonathan Safran Foer. I wanted to read it before the movie came out so that I could have that experience without being colored by the visual intensity that I know the movie will offer.
It’s beautiful and sad and poignant and all the things you would expect of a book about the enormity of 9/11/01, and more.
Safran Foer has a very unusual writing style and I know a lot of critics don’t like his technique (he includes lots of images and has a sort of picture book embedded within the novel) but it seems to me that all of these elements only support the experience of the story.
If you aren’t already aware, it’s a story about a young 8 year old boy whose father dies in the 9/11 WTC attack. But there’s so much more than that, in this book. It’s about the big issues in life: how to live fully, what it means to be a parent, what it means to be a child, love, regret, death, acceptance. And if you love New York, it is in some ways, also a love story about NYC.
When I finished it last night, I cried because I was so sad that I was done. There are not too many books that do that for me anymore and this one did. I encourage you to read it before the movie comes out, as there is a depth and richness to the book that can never be captured in a 2 hour movie, even if it’s well done.