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Forest Dark
by Nicole Krauss


Overview - Click Here For the Autographed Copy

"A brilliant novel. I am full of admiration." --Philip Roth

"One of America's most important novelists" ( New York Times ), the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of The History of Love , conjures an achingly beautiful and breathtakingly original novel about personal transformation that interweaves the stories of two disparate individuals--an older lawyer and a young novelist--whose transcendental search leads them to the same Israeli desert.  Read more...


 
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More About Forest Dark by Nicole Krauss
 
 
 
Overview
Click Here For the Autographed Copy

"A brilliant novel. I am full of admiration." --Philip Roth

"One of America's most important novelists" (New York Times), the award-winning, New York Times bestselling author of The History of Love, conjures an achingly beautiful and breathtakingly original novel about personal transformation that interweaves the stories of two disparate individuals--an older lawyer and a young novelist--whose transcendental search leads them to the same Israeli desert.

Jules Epstein, a man whose drive, avidity, and outsized personality have, for sixty-eight years, been a force to be reckoned with, is undergoing a metamorphosis. In the wake of his parents' deaths, his divorce from his wife of more than thirty years, and his retirement from the New York legal firm where he was a partner, he's felt an irresistible need to give away his possessions, alarming his children and perplexing the executor of his estate. With the last of his wealth, he travels to Israel, with a nebulous plan to do something to honor his parents. In Tel Aviv, he is sidetracked by a charismatic American rabbi planning a reunion for the descendants of King David who insists that Epstein is part of that storied dynastic line. He also meets the rabbi's beautiful daughter who convinces Epstein to become involved in her own project--a film about the life of David being shot in the desert--with life-changing consequences.

But Epstein isn't the only seeker embarking on a metaphysical journey that dissolves his sense of self, place, and history. Leaving her family in Brooklyn, a young, well-known novelist arrives at the Tel Aviv Hilton where she has stayed every year since birth. Troubled by writer's block and a failing marriage, she hopes that the hotel can unlock a dimension of reality--and her own perception of life--that has been closed off to her. But when she meets a retired literature professor who proposes a project she can't turn down, she's drawn into a mystery that alters her life in ways she could never have imagined.

Bursting with life and humor, Forest Dark is a profound, mesmerizing novel of metamorphosis and self-realization--of looking beyond all that is visible towards the infinite.


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780062430991
  • ISBN-10: 0062430998
  • Publisher: Harper
  • Publish Date: September 2017
  • Page Count: 304
  • Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Fiction > Literary
Books > Fiction > Cultural Heritage
Books > Fiction > Jewish

 
BookPage Reviews

Watch me disappear

Nicole Krauss opens her challenging and illuminating fourth novel, Forest Dark, with a disappearance. Jules Epstein, a wealthy, elderly Manhattanite, returns to his birth city of Tel Aviv on a mysterious mission—and vanishes without a trace. In a parallel storyline, a novelist and mother of two named Nicole travels to Tel Aviv, hoping to disappear into fiction. At home in Brooklyn, she’s in a creative slump and a foundering marriage, and thinks a change of scene might turn things around.

Readers can be forgiven for wondering how much of the fictional Nicole’s storyline is based on Krauss’ own relationship with former husband (and fellow writer) Jonathan Safran Foer, with whom she has two children. But it isn’t long before the absorbing fictional world Krauss has created drowns out any literary gossip. Both Epstein and Nicole encounter enigmatic strangers who seduce them with stories: Epstein discovers he might have ties to the biblical King David, while Nicole is given a suitcase that is said to contain lost manuscripts of Franz Kafka. These revelations place both characters on surprising trajectories.

Though the story at times might feel meandering, Krauss is always in control. The myriad literary allusions and her ruminations on the nature of story and on boundaries of all sorts—including those of reality—deepen the journeys of her two main characters. Like Krauss’ previous books Great House and The History of Love, Forest Dark slowly builds to a powerful emotional crescendo and an ending that feels revelatory.

Haunting and reflective, poetic and wise, this is another masterful work from one of America’s best writers.

 

This article was originally published in the September 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
BAM Customer Reviews