BookBrowse Reviews The History of Love by Nicole Krauss

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Beyond the book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The History of Love

by Nicole Krauss

The History of Love by Nicole Krauss
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    May 2005, 252 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2006, 272 pages

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Reviews

BookBrowse:


A most unusual and original piece of fiction - not to be missed. Novel

From the book jacket: A long-lost book reappears, mysteriously connecting an old man searching for his son and a girl seeking a cure for her widowed mother's loneliness.

Leo Gursky's life is about surviving, tapping his radiator each evening to let his upstairs neighbor know he's still alive. But life wasn't always like this: sixty years ago, in the Polish village where he was born, he fell in love and wrote a book. And though he doesn't know it, that book survived, inspiring fabulous circumstances, even love. Fourteen-year-old Alma was named after a character in that very book. And although she has her hands full—keeping track of her brother, Bird (who thinks he might be the Messiah), and taking copious notes on How to Survive in the Wild—she undertakes an adventure to find her namesake and save her family.

Comment: Krauss says that The History of Love was inspired by her four grandparents (it is partially dedicated to "My grandparents, who taught me the opposite of disappearing.") and by a pantheon of authors whose work is haunted by loss—Bruno Schulz, Franz Kafka, Isaac Babel, and more. Book rights have already been sold in at least 20 countries.

When asked how she found the right voice for Leo Gursky, she says, 'It was easy in that I just wasn't looking for it, or him. One day I had his voice in my head, and I started writing, and it turned out to be the beginning of the novel. Honestly, he feels like me. It was never a stretch to write in his voice; I never sat around scratching my head, wondering what he'd think or how he'd say something.....When I started, I'd decided to write a book with no plot. Devising plots didn't seem like my strength, which didn't bother me too much, since the books I love generally don't depend on them. For a long time all I had was Leo's voice. Then Alma's. I had these little bits of The History of Love which I didn't know yet were going to become a book within a book--they were just vignettes.'

Note: Do not confuse Nicola Krause, co-author of The Nanny Diaries with Nicole Krauss, author of This History of Love - they are two very different people and two very different books!

This review was originally published in June 2005, and has been updated for the April 2006 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.



This review is available to non-members for a limited time. For full access become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Support BookBrowse

Become a Member and discover books that entertain, engage & enlighten!

Join Today!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Hunger
    Hunger
    by Roxane Gay
    In this penetrating and fearless memoir, author Roxane Gay discusses her battle with body acceptance...
  • Book Jacket: The Black Witch
    The Black Witch
    by Laurie Forest
    In The Black Witch, Laurie Forest introduces her readers to an immersive fantasy world where ...
  • Book Jacket: See What I Have Done
    See What I Have Done
    by Sarah Schmidt
    Sarah Schmidt's historical fictionalization of the Lizzie Borden story is a tsunami. From the ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Cruel Beautiful World by Caroline Leavitt

Cruel Beautiful World examines the intricate, infinitesimal distance between seduction and love, loyalty and duty.

About the book
Join the discussion!

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Happiness
    by Heather Harpham

    A love story that follows a one-of-a-kind family through twists of fate that require nearly unimaginable choices.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Hame

Hame by Annalena McAfee

A rich, sultry novel about a young American fleeing a crumbling marriage for a remote Scottish island.

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

A F Out O W

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.