Monday, February 2, 2009

The History of Love

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss.

Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl. The History of Love is far from what you expect it to be - it is not a simple love story about two people falling in love, breaking up, getting back together and living happily ever after. It's far from that , actually. The History of Love is a beautifully written intricate tale of the fate of two very different strangers and how their lives connect. It takes you from Nazi invaded Poland, to current day New York City. Story number #1 centers around Leo Gursky, an old, old, old Jewish immigrant just trying to live until tomorrow. He reflects often about a girl he loved back in Poland and wants to be remembered. Story #2 shows young Alma who is trying to make her mother happy and fall in love. Her mother, a book translator, lost her husband, Alma's father, many years ago and her only companion is an old book called "The History of Love." Knowing that, Alma tries to find information about the book. The story is heartbreaking and beautiful. You're involved in it up to the very last word. In a book where many stories take place, all separate, it's amazing how they all connect together lovingly in the end. I'm really excited to read every other book Krauss wrote and will write.


Airam said...

I've had this book for awhile now but it's sitting amidst the stack that still need to be read. Thanks for the great review!

Airam said...

Hmm .. for some reason the banner isn't working with explorer. Hopefully our readers will have Firefox.

Pam said...

I read this one last summer and I agree, it was really interesting how the stories intertwine and they come together. However, I have to admit that I strongly preferred reading Leo's story and wanted to hear more about him. I found myself nearly fast-forwarding through Alma's portions just so I could read about Leo.

Lauren said...

Airam - Definitely check it out! It's a quick read, regardless of size.

Pam - That's funny! I did that occasionally with the story surrounding the "author" of "The History of Love."

Peace Turkey said...

I was looking at my book shelves last night and had decided to review this book. You beat me to it!

It is such an amazing book. Complicated and so well written. How can you not love a book with sentences like this: "...An average of seventy-four species become extinct every day, which was one good reason, but not the only one, to hold someone's hand..."