Friday, February 11, 2011

Currently Reading: Everything Is Illuminated

Currently Reading is a segment in which I would like to discuss what book(s) I've been putting my nose in recently and hear about all of your current literary adventures, a resource to share about what books have found us for the first time or to muse on old favorites that have recaptured our interest. I have always been introduced to the best reads from close pals, so I hope we can recreate that feeling of sharing here. 

I know that I am almost ten years late in reading this novel. The topic of late night conversations with friends raving over its text, Everything is Illuminated by Jonathon Safran Foer is one of those books that has long lived on many makeshift bookshelves with me vowing to read it and quickly forgetting my vow as soon as something else caught my eye. As stated before, these last several months have been a time of discovery and simply put, more reading time to delve into books that have strewn our office floor (we're working on the shelving issue) too long unread.

When Eating Animals, a non-fiction work about factory farming by Foer, came out in 2009 I quickly purchased and consumed it. Although many writers have already thoroughly examined our food culture, I was deeply impressed by the voice and style he brought to the issue.  

With so much praise and a prior good experience, I picked up Everything Is Illuminated a few days ago. Every positive review that I have heard over the years is true. It is a beautiful work that I regret waiting so long to enjoy.

"This was the world in which she grew and he aged. They made for themselves a sanctuary from Trachimbrod, a habitat completely unlike the rest of the world. No hateful words were ever spoken, and no hands raised. More than that, no angry words were ever spoken, and nothing was denied. But more than that, no unloving words were ever spoken, and everything was held up as another small piece of proof that it can be this way, it doesn’t have to be that way; if there is no love in the world, we will make a new world, and we will give it heavy walls, and we will furnish it with soft red interiors, from the inside out, and give it a knocker that resonates like a diamond falling to a jeweler’s felt so that we should never hear it. Love me, because love doesn’t exist, and I have tried everything that does." 
- Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer

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