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Everything Is Illuminated
Everything Is Illuminated
Author: Jonathan Safran Foer
With only a yellowing photograph in hand, a young man - also named Jonathan Safran Foer - sets out to find the woman who might or might not have saved his grandfather from the Nazis. Accompanied by an old man haunted by memories of the war, an amorous dog named Sammy Davis, Junior, Junior, and the unforgettable Alex, a young Ukrainian translator...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780618173877
ISBN-10: 0618173870
Publication Date: 4/16/2002
Pages: 288
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

4 stars, based on 41 ratings
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin
Book Type: Hardcover
Other Versions: Paperback, Audio CD
Members Wishing: 1
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

Patouie avatar reviewed Everything Is Illuminated on + 132 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 7
I just love the language jokes, both subtle and unsubtle, inherent in the character of the translator. The first 3/4 of the book had me laughing delightedly so often that I almost rated it up there with Catch-22. The last part of the book took on a more dream-like, esoteric quality, and while I still liked the book very much, I don't give it 5 stars. But if you love language, don't miss this one. It was fun being aware of all kinds of things that the narrator was missing. Takes a lot of skill to write that delicately.
Yoni avatar reviewed Everything Is Illuminated on + 312 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 4
This is one of those books...you either get it, or you don't. I think it was so clever, so magical, so intelligently written, both funny and devastatingly sad at the same time. This is a beautiful book like nothing I have ever read before.
Naiche avatar reviewed Everything Is Illuminated on + 90 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
It's an interesting idea, and I liked the concept of this conversation between writers, but the book didn't come together for me at all. I kept being annoyed by little things and getting thrown out of the story of the book. The worst part was the faked bad English, which was very badly faked. I kept stopping reading and I would think to myself "there's no way someone learning English could make a mistake like this - you have to already know English well to draw this connection." I also disliked the contrast between the absurdist shetl faux family history and the realistic Ukranian search for family history - I don't mind absurdism, but the contrast made that whole side of the story seem really pointless.
reviewed Everything Is Illuminated on + 8 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Upon reading this book, I found my new favorite contemporary author. The introspection of the author in a semi-autobiographical fashion really grabbed me. I just had to make it through the first 50 pages, which at times annoyed, and bored slightly. Get through that, and you'll find the gem I did. This is the only piece that takes away 1/2 star for me. It had me laughing, crying, and wanting to throw the book across the room - something I had not felt since reading Pearl S. Buck's book "The Good Earth" in high school. Years ago...
reviewed Everything Is Illuminated on + 13 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
I am not a huge fan of Foer but did like his other book, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, better than this one. I suppose if you are "into" this kind of (family/Jewish/East European) history, it would be very interesting, but I thought he went on a bit and he lost my interest.
Read All 34 Book Reviews of "Everything Is Illuminated"


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