Sunday, January 10, 2010

A Gem of a Book

Well, I am not even going to wait until I am done this book to tell you all that you should frigging GET IT and READ IT.
I shall finish it tonight. Only a few pages to go, but you know what, I can't wait to tell you how good the thing is.
It's called Man Walks Into A Room and it's by Nicole Krauss.
It is/was her debut novel, back in 2002. And as some of you may recall, I read her The History of Love a few weeks ago, and found it to be quite a good book, but a bit -- DIFFICULT........ ish.
I hesitate to criticize it really, because I know the fault was in me, not the author.
This book, however, [her first one to be published way back when].... well, it has had me in thrall, every page. And still, I am enthralled.
It is exquisite and [a word I do not throw around often] -- SIGNIFICANT.
Until publishing this, her first novel, Krauss focused on writing poetry, and her nuanced sentences here reveal that background. But I say that in the most positive of terms.
Oh God, there is no way to describe it, you just have to read this book.
The following synopsis I am taking directly from the back cover of my Anchor paperback:

Samson Greene, a young and popular professor at Columbia, is found wandering in the Nevada desert. When his wife, Anna, comes to bring him home, she finds a man who remembers nothing, not even his own name. The removal of a small brain tumor saves his life, but his memories beyond the age of twelve are permanently lost.

Here is the story of a strikingly intelligent, sensitive man returned to a world in which everything is strange and new. An emigrant in his own life, set free from everything and everyone who once defined him. Samson Greene believes he has nothing left to lose. So when a charismatic scientist asks Samson to participate in a bold experiment, he agrees. What he gains is nothing short of the beautifully painful revelation of what it is to be a human being.

As I said, I still have a few pages to go, but even so, I conclude in all earnest that this novel is a sort of flawlessly constructed work of art.
As is the author herself, shown above.
These combined conclusions have led me to realize that by the end of tonight, I have to not only reach the last page of this book, I must also seriously re-evaluate the priority of my Nicoles.



SFP said...

All right, Cip, I just downloaded a sample of this to my Kindle and it will probably be my first purchase of the year. I loved History of Love, so there's no excuse after your review not to get around to this one sooner rather than later.

(I think this Nicole is better looking than the other one, too.)

Stefanie said...

Wow, Nicole K(idman) is going to be devasted when she finds out you have dumped her for another Nicole K(rauss). Let her down easy Cip. I'll keep my eyes open for Krauss's book.

Alyce said...

I'm so glad to see that you think this one is so good! I found it at a used book sale a few months ago and picked it up on a whim.

cipriano said...

Nicole [Krauss] is better than Nicole [Kidman].
More to talk about!
Problem is, they'z BOTH married.

I encourage all three of you gals, really, my new-[est] girlfriend..... she can REALLY WRITE!