Published On: Mon, Aug 28th, 2017

Forest Dark by Nicole Krauss – review

Forest Dark by Nicole Krauss(Bloomsbury, £16.99)

He is a wealthy lawyer who recently lost both his parents and divorced his wife of 30 years. He is suffering from “the disease of radical charity”: he has given away all his personal possessions, “clearing a space to think… he had begun to feel choked by all the things around him”.

Jules leaves his New York apartment and heads for Israel: “a place he’d returned to often, drawn back by the tangle of allegiances”.

It’s there that he meets an American rabbi and becomes embroiled in plans to commemorate the life of King David.

Interspersed with Jules’ story is that of a young, unnamed novelist suffering from writer’s block and a failing marriage, who leaves her family in Brooklyn for a trip to Tel Aviv.

There she encounters a retired literature professor – and possible ex-Mossad agent – who convinces her to become part of a bizarre project about Franz Kafka.

Nicole Krauss won plentiful fans with her bestselling novel The History Of Love and Forest Dark shares much in common with Philip Roth’s writing.

Philosophical and intellectual, it explores identity, culture and the connections between the individual and history. 

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