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The History of Love spans of period of over 60 years and takes readers from Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe to present day Brighton Beach. At the center of each main character's psyche is the issue of loneliness, and the need to fill a void left empty by lost love. Leo Gursky is a retired locksmith who immigrates to New York after escaping SS officers in his native Poland, only to spend the last stage of his life terrified that no one will notice when he dies. ("I try to make a point of being seen. Sometimes when I'm out, I'll buy a juice even though I'm not thirsty.") Fourteen-year-old Alma Singer vacillates between wanting to memorialize her dead father and finding a way to lift her mother's veil of depression. At the same time, she's trying to save her brother Bird, who is convinced he may be the Messiah, from becoming a 10-year-old social pariah. As the connection between Leo and Alma is slowly unmasked, the desperation, along with the potential for salvation, of this unique pair is also revealed.
The poetry of her prose, along with an uncanny ability to embody two completely original characters, is what makes Krauss an expert at her craft. But in the end, it's the absolute belief in the uninteruption of love that makes this novel a pleasure, and a wonder to behold. --Gisele Toueg --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Beautiful story, well written, engaging, heartbreaking and lovely.
The characters are well drawn and uniquely identifiable by voice, making it easier to follow the multiple story lines and perspectives from which they are told.
One of the first books I have read in a long time that, when I finished, I turned right back to the beginning and started again.
Play within a play within a play. Difficult to follow. Good story.Published 16 hours ago by Louise B. Fields
I loved this book! I found myself highlighting something brilliantly written, expressed or felt on virtually every page.Published 7 days ago by Heather
The story left me with a sense of melancholy. The voice throughout the book is relatable, like someone I knew was telling me bits and pieces of their life. Beautiful.Published 13 days ago by wolfbear
This is a beautiful novel. I read a lot, but this is on my top 10 list. I recently sent a copy to my mother-in-law when she wanted a new book, and I re-read it. Read morePublished 16 days ago by KatieL
Beautiful writing. A book with many interwoven stories all about the many aspects of love. Far from boring with a mix of comedy and poignancyPublished 21 days ago by sallie waters