Jonathan Safran Foer's new novel came out about a month ago. I haven't read it. His first novel got a lot of good pub and people seemed to really like it. So I picked up "Everything is Illuminated" around Christmas of 2002, started it, couldn't get into it, and gave up. I picked it up again about a year ago, finished it this time, but didn't see what was so great about it. It was sort of funny, but it wasn't anything amazing or to write home about. I figured that he got all the pub because he knew the right people, he was well connected and therefore he was given a ton of press clippings.
His new book, "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" has gotten even better reviews. And now I'm tempted to read it. It's not like I hated his first novel, I just didn't see what was so great about it when compared to say, "The Corrections" or "The Known World" or Dave Eggers or 21st century novels/novelist. So maybe I'll pick it up... I don't know. But I still don't get why he gets so much pub and attention. Are we blinded by something sort of interesting but not necessarily good? Does For really just know the right people? Or is it something else? Because Fore writes about somewhat depressing events (the Holocaust and 9/11) and tries to put a "21st century" spin on these events, are we willing to forgive his some what boring and to a degree mindless writing because he's taking on these subjects? I'm not sure. But by judging by his first novel and comments about his second... I think it's a little of everything.
Anyway here is an interview with him from the Guardian. It's sort of interesting... I still think he's a bit overrated and has the help of knowing the right people.