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I don't normally go for books with "love" in the title, had enough slushy stuff to last me a lifetime, plus it is an unrealistic view of life in so called "love stories".....BUT....this isn't really a book about slushy "romantic" love, it's about the love families have for each other, even in strained circumstances.
There, at first, appears to be just two narratives in the novel, but there is a third one quietly weaving the two main narratives together. A further one helps bring the novel to conclusion.
For me, the narrators are Leo, Alma, Bird and Zvi.

"When I was born my mother named me after every girl in the book my father gave her called The History of Love...."
Fourteen year old Alma Singer is trying to find a cure for her mother's loneliness. Believing she might discover it in an old book her mother is lovingly translating, she sets out in search of its author.
Across New York an old man called Leo Gursky is trying to survive a little bit longer. He spends his days dreaming of the lost love that sixty years ago in Poland inspired him to write a book. And although he doesn't know it yet, that book also survive: crossing oceans and generations, and changing lives.....

The novel starts off with Leo and his very strange, almost bizarre ways of ensuring that although he is old, and lives alone, he won't be one of those lonely dead people who are discovered days, sometimes weeks after they have finally died. Although comic, it is probably true, Krauss has him going out every day and doing unpredictable things in public places, such as knocking over stack of cans in a supermarket. A bittersweet condemnation of society today.

Alma's quest to find the "cure" for her mother's loneliness is also sad, but heart warming, not in a mushy way though. I had put off reading this book for quiet a while presuming it would be all hearts and flowers, it's anything but that, and a very good read.


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