[Foer's] depiction of Oskar's reaction to phone messages left by his father as he awaited rescue in the burning World Trade Center, his description of Oskar's grandfather's love affair with Anna and his experiences during the bombing of Dresden—these passages underscore Mr. Foer's ability to evoke, with enormous compassion and psychological acuity, his characters' emotional experiences, and to show how these private moments intersect with the great public events of history.
Michiko Kakutani - New York Times
Oskar's unconscious comedy and his poignant search for information about the man who spun bedtime stories out of fantasy and science. All he wants is some way to go back to that moment of sweet security before zealots murdered his father. The tragedy of September 11 has made Oskar older than his years, but in Foer's tender portrayal the grief that weighs him down makes children of us all.
Ron Charles - Washington Post
Oskar Schell...is a nine-year-old...[who] turns his naïvely precocious vocabulary to the understanding of historical tragedy.... Foer demonstrates once again that he is one of the few contemporary writers willing to risk sentimentalism in order to address great questions of truth, love and beauty.
An emotionally devastating climax. No spoilers here, but we will say that the book—which includes a number of photographs and some eccentric typography—ends with what is undoubtedly the most beautiful and heartbreaking flip book in all of literature.
The humor works as a deceptive, glitzy cover for a fairly serious tale about loss and recovery.... [A] powerful conclusion that will make even the most jaded hearts fall. —Matthew L. Moffett, Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale, VA.
School Library Journal
[B]eautifully designed second novel from the gifted young author.... Oskar discovers...the meaning of his life (all our lives, actually).... Much more is revealed as this brilliant fiction works thrilling variations on, and consolations for, its plangent message: that "in the end, everyone loses everyone." Yes, but look what Foer has found.
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