Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, Jonathan Safran Foer, Houghton Mifflin Company, 2005, 326 pp
I loved this book!
Oskar Schell is nine years old, lives in NYC and has lost his father in the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center. He and his father had a very special relationship and Oskar is inconsolable. But he is extremely bright and incredibly independent, despite several phobias. He is hunting for clues about his father, a skill which his father had taught him by making up mysteries for him to solve.
The story is very imaginative. I think it could only have been written by someone who is still young. The way that Foer deals with love and loss, with the curiosity of a child and a child's view of the world, especially in this information age, is beautiful, fanciful and yet very real.
This is one of the best books I have read this year and gives me great expectations for the future of fiction.