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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.
This is a gorgeous book that is sometimes very funny and sometimes heartbreaking. The writing is beautiful, the characters deep and moving. This is a wonderful book.Published 12 days ago by abc
"If you don't know what it feels like to have someone you love put a hand below your bottom rib for the first time, what chance is there for love? Read morePublished 13 days ago by Eve
This is a sad, funny, complex book within a book which manages to tie together a fascinating cast of idiosyncratic characters from eighty-year-old Holocaust survivors to... Read morePublished 13 days ago by Aileen M. Solomon
Disjointed, rambling and difficult to read. I would not recommend it nor would anyone in my book club.Published 18 days ago by karen mamuzic
An exceptionally fine read. I was sincerely moved by the arc of the characters.Published 20 days ago by Justin W.
When I started this book, I was so confused that I just started speed reading, just to get through it for our book group. Read morePublished 22 days ago by Amazon Customer
I didn't finish it because it did not hold my interest, but I will try again some day.Published 25 days ago by lincoln hartford
Loved this book. A little confusing at the beginning but great finish.Published 1 month ago by akskimom
This has become one of my favorite books of ALL TIME. I read a lot. This is a magical combination of story, poetry, imagery - it just does it all superbly. Read morePublished 1 month ago by BB