Jewish Book: Saving Myself, a Los Angeles Childhood
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A Los Angeles Childhood - "The History of Love," Our Common Voice
Wednesday, 27 April 2011 12:14

Have you read Nicole Krauss' book, THE HISTORY OF LOVE? I just finished reading it for the third time. It's a book about a book. It's a book about love and loss. It's a book that sings my heart the way I understand that all logic is only translated to a time that understands only itself and through that extension, the reader. The interpretation of mind. That I can make a truth out of two words, And Yet.

There is a difference there. And yet. Period. Not and yet, comma. This is how Krauss channels Leopold Gursky. It slows everything down. Thinks about it in a way only an old person can,  telling the story through his eyes, weaving in other characters. He is the young boy who hides in the forest to survive the Nazis. The only girl he finds and ever loves realizes he has lost her to years of silence after hiding in a forest in Poland. To save his life. And she goes to America to save and start hers without him.

This holds life in abeyance only when memory, like old photos hold on to the truth of the moment.  Five years later he travels to New York on a freighter only to find out that the only girl he ever truly loved, and his child, a son; that Leopold gave birth to another child, this other one, a manuscript, which traveled so for that it takes almost two thirds of our book, the one we hold in our hands , for the truth to come forward to them.

Nicole Krauss has us follow such a treasure map, that at the end, after underlining passages, putting check marks on the page, I finally reach the end and realize that she speaks in my own voice as I am sure millions of readers feel the same.

All I can tell you is I am glad I still have time left, hopefully, to continue to read more stories woven by this extraordinary thirty something year old woman that hold and intrigue me as only a glorious book like THE HISTORY OF LOVE can.

You might also want to read her latest book, GREAT HOUSE, which I have only just begun to study.

Thank you for reading Not-Just-a-Jewish-Book BLOG!