Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Everything is Illuminated & Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” as Want to Read:
Everything is Illuminated & Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Everything is Illuminated & Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  1,150 ratings  ·  49 reviews
[NB: 2-in-1 edition]

Everything Is Illuminated, Jonathan Safran Foer's stunning debut, tells the story of a young Jewish American's quixotic journey into an unexpected past. An arresting blend of high comedy and great tragedy, it is about searching for people and places that no longer exist, for the hidden truths that haunt every family, and for the delicate but necessary
Hardcover, Houghton 2 Works edition, 656 pages
Published November 15th 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.23  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,150 ratings  ·  49 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Everything is Illuminated & Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
Sep 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Everything is Illuminated

The only thing worse than being sad is for other to know that you are sad.

The bruises go away, and so does how you hate, and so does the feeling that everything you receive in this life is something you have earned.

Love me, because love doesn’t exist, and I have tried everything that does.

I am afraid of the world moving forward without me, of my absence going unnoticed, or worse, being some natural force propelling life on.

Love is the immovability of truth.

She was so
Oct 15, 2012 rated it really liked it
I had first discovered "Everything is Illuminated" through a friend. She had the film version of this book and at the time I did not realize it was originally a book.

"Everything is Illuminated" depicts many emotions, in my opinion the feeling of being lost, sad and uncertain are at the forefront but, there are comical moments that help to lighten the mood of this story.

I found that there were three main characters, Grandfather (the driver for a tour guide company) Sasha (translator/grandson),
Jun 08, 2010 rated it did not like it
I gave this book away after reading the first two chapters. I just didn't like it...
Nawal Hashim
Jan 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
cried like a baby. for the second time.
Dec 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
i am challenging myself to read as much as i can out of the 1001 books you must read before you die.
And it came as no surprise to me that this book made the list.
I saw the film adaptation of 'Everything is Illuminated' screenplay and direction by Liev Schreiber first before i read the book... Sure there are things altered in the movie but i think both versions are equally as interesting and moving.

Jonathan Safran Foer is an extremely talented writer...beyond his years.
His novel 'Everything is
Mar 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I haven't actually read this edition ... I've read both of these books (the first three times, the second only once) and they are stunning. Jonathan Safran Foer is my all-time favorite writer, and my best friend convinced me that I needed this fancy schmancy copy of the two books in one. I can't guarantee that I'll ever lug around the hardcover, 630 page book in order to read it, but the idea of it nestling perfectly into my bookshelf (next to its paperback counterparts, no less) was too perfect ...more
Donna Doth schneider
This book is hard to understand with two stories going on and in two different eras. The middle to the end of the book was great but the ending was disappointing! I am talking about the illuminated book
Lindsay Schultz
Jan 30, 2012 rated it it was ok
Hard to follow. I'd like to read it again when I'm less busy
Sep 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I do not see how to add this to my book count given that I read it in January of this year. Thus a different edition. Same claim: review to come.

I still need to read Everything is Illuminated.
Paméla Rioux
Jan 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I only read the EL&IC part of this 2 in 1 novel.

This book is one of the few that has been automatically added to my favorite pile. He made me laugh aloud, gave me goosebumps and teary-eyes.

The writer has perfectly given an individual voice to each of his characters - who are more than real, authentic and honest. Oscar Shell, a nine-year-old, compulsive inventor, is an incredibly endearing character. His voice is neither too young nor too mature, I think the writer was able to find the
Emily Vankleeck
May 01, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really loved the"voices" of each character, but it was hard for me to keep switching back and forth so abruptly. Oskar was easy to spot. It was more difficult for me keep the grandfather, his deceased son, and his grandson on track, since they were out of chronological order.. I had to keep going back to the page before and then thinking it through to get by bearings. Otherwise I would have given this 5 stars. It probably didn't help that I was reading in spurts on my phone. So, there was no ...more
Silli Hajjah
Jan 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close is a story of healing. Of forgiveness, I think. Of letting go and taking it all. It's a story that left you a little bit empty but relieved. Or I guess it won't left you at all, because you will now growing with the story inside your hearts. It's a story that make you want to watching a bit more, to hear a lot more, to say more, of people, of your surroundings, of everything. Because who knows if tonight's going the last. (Also, it's not unnecessary saying I ...more
Jul 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
On forever loss and forever continuing.
Tony Mistretta
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Highly emotional story about a boy who searches for his lost father.
A.J. Curtis
Aug 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Read both of these books and saw both of the film versions. I have to say I enjoyed both versions immensely. Everything is illuminated is just a great story and a unique take on the holocaust or rather looking back at it, loved the old man and his dog Sammy Davis Jr, Jr. The movie was extremely well done and honestly I found it a bit more captivating. Extremely loud... I enjoyed the book, loved the relationship between father and son and the games he would make his son play. it was actually ...more
Rissa Flores
Apr 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: with-review, owned
I read Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close (Review) last year and I was blown away, so I definitely had expectations for Everything is Illuminated . Needless to say, I was not disappointed. Without a doubt, it was another Jonathan Safran Foer masterpiece.

The novel is about a man named Jonathan, who travels to Ukraine to find a woman named Augustine, who saved his grandfather's life back in WWII. Upon arrival, he meets a Ukranian man named Alex, who acts as his translator, Alex's grandfather
Jan 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I feel I do not need to review this, as I read both individually. However, I will add for those who have only watched the films, READ the books! Please! My 11 year old daughter watched Everything Is Illuminated and she was terribly upset by the ending. I told her to pick up my copy of the book & read it & she would not be sad or upset by it. Same goes for the other book turned film. Again, I told her read the book, there were so many levels untouched by the screenplay & I thought she ...more
Karen Sage
Jul 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close - what an endearing story - i was concerned that it would be somewhat taking advantage of 9/11 and the terrible tragedy that occurred, but it was an endearing tale about a little boy and his brilliant mind. Really enjoyed his thought process, the build up of the characters and the search for the key.

Everything is Illuminated - weird, not as good to me as the other, but still very interesting characters developed. Strange the way the author became part of
Kim Williams
Mar 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I actually read Extremely Loud first. Being one of those New Yorkers who lived through the nightmarish day that was 9/11 and the awful days and weeks that followed, I like to read other people's take on the events of those times. This book drew me right in to the mind of a child trying to cope with a loss that was too big for many adults to handle. The image of the falling man is a central image, one seared in our collective minds following the tragedy. The other work in this collection took a ...more
Daniel Patrick
Jan 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Both books absolutely fantastic, with Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close being the better of the two, by a tiny margin. The first time I read Foer, he reminded me of Kurt Vonnegut. Same ability to create tight little situations, (the second of these books really reminds me of Mother Night, for some reason,) but without as much of the zany humour. Having said that, he's a stunning writer and I can't wait for him to out something new out. (It's been a long wait!)
Mar 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: i-own-it
I have read both of these books. I gave Everything is Illuminated a 4/5 stars, and gave Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close a 5/5 stars, because it's my favorite book.

I own this copy, but haven't read the two books out of this edition. I read them in their individual copies. Was just going through my Goodreads and noticed that I hadn't added this one though.
Jun 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
Engaging book with engaging characters. The story of a tragic historical event intermingled with humor from narrative of improperly translated English of young Ukraine character and comedy of errors that unfold during search by a young American author to find the woman who saved his grandfather during the Holocaust.
Dec 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed this book for reasons different from the average reader. I did not like any of the characters whatsoever. The child seemed off a tick and was just strange to me. His decisions I could not relate with whatsoever. But The content in the book, the way it was written and brought together was fantastic. I recommend it. I do
Rae Hittinger
Jul 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
It has been a little while since I read this- but I recall quite enjoying this book. It has some really interesting 'modern' elements to it that don't feel gimicky at all - rathger they are interesting and exciting and new. One interesting aspect is the letter writing between the subject and the narrator/author. The characters are really interesting. A great read. Very powerful & interesting.
May 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I have just finished Everything is Illuminated. It is a perfect exaple of Jewish literature since it has a good combination of the following ingrediants: magic realism, tradition, rememberance, temporal disparity, story in a story, paralell storytelling, some Eastern Europe, love, duty, friendship, drama.
Ann Laudisio
Jan 24, 2016 rated it it was ok
I read this because I want to see the Tom Hanks. Very disappointed in the story. Seemed very choppy and unrealistic. Almost made the little boy a charicature. Not going to look for the movie either.
Dec 24, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
I just finished "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" and have to say I was not a fan. I did not like some of the characters and the plot. However I forced myself to finish it because I do not like stopping halfway and leaving a book unfinished.
Jul 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Jan 22, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jewels
Someone read me the first chapter of this aloud whilst I was lying in bed with the flu and I wrote in my diary later how 'they read me into the most beautiful book I'd ever heard'
Sep 05, 2011 marked it as to-read
recommended by claire's bookclub
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Of Witchcraft and Whimsy: A Beginner's Guide to Basic Witchcraft
  • Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal
  • Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life
  • The Noel Stranger (The Noel Collection, #2)
  • The Paris Mapguide: The Essential Guide La Vie Parisienne
  • Devotions: The Selected Poems of Mary Oliver
  • The Mistletoe Secret
  • Anne Frank Remembered: The Story of the Woman Who Helped to Hide the Frank Family
  • The Garden of Eden
  • The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories
  • The Man from Moscow (Commander Shaw Counterspy, #4)
  • The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo
  • Horizon
  • The Five Invitations: Discovering What Death Can Teach Us About Living Fully
  • Search Inside Yourself: The Unexpected Path to Achieving Success, Happiness (And World Peace)
  • Bitter in the Mouth
  • The Noel Diary (The Noel Collection, #1)
  • Notes of a Native Son
See similar books…
Jonathan Safran Foer is the author of two bestselling, award-winning novels, Everything Is Illuminated and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, and a bestselling work of nonfiction, Eating Animals. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
“I never thought about things at all, everything changed, the distance that wedged itself between me and my happiness wasn’t the world, it wasn’t the bombs and burning buildings, it was me, my thinking, the cancer of never letting go, is ignorance bliss, I don’t know, but it’s so painful to think, and tell me, what did thinking ever do for me, to what great place did thinking ever bring me?” 0 likes
“Dünya hep aynı kalırken ölen insan sayısının artması ve günün birinde kimseyi gömecek yer kalmayacak olması tuhaf değil mi?” 0 likes
More quotes…