Bookmarks Magazine's Reviews > Great House

Great House by Nicole Krauss
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Dec 09, 10

bookshelves: jan-feb-2011

Critics agreed that Great House will amply reward the patient reader. Ambitious, provocative, and slightly abstruse in its inquiries about how to live, how to make art, how to suffer, and what it means to be Jewish, the elegiac Great House offers a series of first-person narratives, each a rich portrait of a shattered life that bears only marginal relation to the next. The novel, notes the New York Times Review, "require[s] readers to reassemble the full story for themselves" -- so those hoping for a fast-paced storyline with neat endings may be disappointed. If some critics didn't quite make the connections, they nonetheless heaped praise on Krauss's mastery of heavy themes, her first-rate prose, and her emotional intensity. "Krauss, who began her career as a poet, can do just about anything she wants with the English language," says the Boston Globe. In sum: another poetic, deeply felt novel from a writer to watch. This is an excerpt from a review published in Bookmarks magazine.
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