Book #21: The History of Love

I actually finished Book #21 last week, but just never got around to writing my review. I wanted so badly to love Nicole Krauss' The History of Love, but I just could not get into it.

The book involves a bunch of different characters and spans about sixty years from Nazi occupied Europe to (more or less) present day New York City. I think that one of the main problems I had with the book is that I kept getting the old man in the story confused with the old man in Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close. Also, one of the main characters runs all over NYC (much like Oskar in Extremely Loud) looking for clues to solve a self created puzzle. It sounds crazy to say that I got the characters confused, but in my jumbled head they were basically the same people. This fact made the story a real struggle for me to get through.

I also despise Coney Island for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with Coney Island and everything with a miserable 18 months where I once spent almost every weekend there (I'll spare you the details). So when Alma befriended a Russian immigrant who lived near the beach, I almost put the book down (I swear I'm not usually this irrational).

All of this is to say that the two stars The History of Love is getting has very little to do with the book itself. Though I did find it lacking a compelling plot and often times found myself wondering "Why have I spent eleven pages reading about this man's pneumonia?" and "Oh crap I just read three pages and can't remember any of what happened".

My Mom loved this book though, so maybe it was just me?

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