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The History of Love Audiobook

The History of Love

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Publisher's Summary

Nicole Krauss' first novel, Man Walks Into a Room, was shortlisted for the Los Angeles Times Book Award and her short fiction has been collected in Best American Short Stories. Now The History of Love proves Krauss is among our finest and freshest literary voices.

It has been decades since Leo Gursky first surrendered his heart, then wrote a book about it, at the tender age of 10, and he's been in love with the same person ever since. Leo believes his book is lost to time, but what he doesn't know is, not only has it survived 60 years without him, it has also been an inspiration to others. Fourteen-year-old Alma was even named for a character from the book. When she realizes how deeply the story touched her lonely mother, she embarks on a search for answers.

The History of Love is an imaginative tale of love and loss that is at once funny, mysterious, and deeply passionate.

Don't miss Nicole Krauss and Salman Rushdie at The New Yorker Festival.

©2005 Nicole Krauss; (P)2005 Recorded Books, LLC

What the Critics Say

"An intriguing books-within-a-book narrative....Venturing into Paul Auster territory in her graceful inquiry into the interplay between life and literature, Krauss is winsome, funny, and affecting." (Booklist)
"Writing with tenderness about eccentric characters, [Krauss] uses earthy humor to mask pain and to question the universe. Her distinctive voice is both plangent and wry, and her imagination encompasses many worlds." (Publishers Weekly)
"If for no other reason than the range of voices she has persuasively created, Ms. Krauss would stand out as a prodigious talent....Ms. Krauss's work is illuminated by the warmth and delicacy of her prose." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.0 (1834 )
5 star
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4.1 (1113 )
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Story
4.4 (1098 )
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Joellen Baraboo, WI, USA 01-12-06
    Joellen Baraboo, WI, USA 01-12-06 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
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    "It can't be over"

    Every once in a while a book is so powerful that you never want it to end. I will miss all the Alma's and Leo. What happened to Bruno? Was he real, or a figment of Leo's imagination? I sat transfixed in my car wondering how they could be gone. The connections were rich, amazing how in a city the size of New York--Germany, South American it might be possible for those connections. Those of us in small towns are never surprised by knowing everyone, but secretly hope that in large cities there may be anonymity. Every voice, every turn of events, was so well crafted by this author, (and the readers) that I was sad it had ended and have engineered my own hopes for the characters.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Elizabeth 06-28-16
    Elizabeth 06-28-16 Member Since 2015

    Listen to about four audio books a months. Never without one.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1325
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    Story
    "Why Did it Take Me So Long to Find This?"

    I loved this book. It was written in 2005 and spans about 1930 to the new century. Starts in Poland when Nazi's are taking over. Two very young lovers get separated. The girl's father is able to send her to America. The boy survives the atrocities by hiding and living off the earth. Eventually he gets to America, too. Most of the book takes place in present time in NYC. It is about how writing keeps our memory alive, about how war impacts people generations later and, as another reviewer said, how and why we love. It is easy to give up on this book because of the four different voices and the connections aren't always clear. I was confused and thought I was missing things. I wasn't. You have to hang in there and things start to come together. Beautifully written. Perfect voices for audio. Five stars for me. (An aside - the author is married to Jonathan Safran Foer, the author of "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close" with some similarities. I, also, loved that audiobook.)

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. Littman OH 04-14-13
    D. Littman OH 04-14-13 Member Since 2017

    history buff

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "a great American novel"
    What made the experience of listening to The History of Love the most enjoyable?

    The book is told by several protagonists and each has its own narrator.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It is a combination of a cultural novel, a human interest story, and a mystery story.


    Which character – as performed by the narrators – was your favorite?

    No particular favorite. The book is written so beautifully that you can identify with each protagonist.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I would have, but it was too long. But I did feel compelled to listen to it over and over to get to the end.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jane North Wales, PA, United States 09-30-11
    Jane North Wales, PA, United States 09-30-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Loved it"
    Would you listen to The History of Love again? Why?

    I did not want it to end. And when it ended, I rewound it to favorite parts and listened again.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The ending. But I won't give that away. I also enjoyed the part where Leo comes back to his apartment to find his friend has baked him a cake and everywhere is covered in flour. On the floor, Leo sees where his elderly friend has laid down and made an angel in the flour. The image is sweet and funny.


    Any additional comments?

    The narrator for Leo was exceptional. He conveyed passion and humor and sadness so effectively. I rewound these parts several times, just to hear him tell them again.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yennta 11-28-10
    Yennta 11-28-10 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    277
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    "Endless Misunderstandings"

    I listened all the way to the end because I wanted to know what happened. If I had read it on paper, I would have hurried through huge swaths of text. This book is such a tangle of magical realism (which I often love) and Jewish history (which I often love) and weird plotting. The main problem for me was that almost every event in it and all the problems experienced by the people in it are the results of misunderstandings. I HATE this as a key issue in fictional action or non-action. Won't watch movies with this concept. It's a very artful writer, indeed, who can hold me with even ONE misunderstanding carrying some weight of plot. This author plays this same string with everybody, everything.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael kansas city, MO, United States 04-11-09
    Michael kansas city, MO, United States 04-11-09 Member Since 2017

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    48
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    56
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    5
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    Overall
    "exceptional."

    a masterpiece. i could talk about how great this story was but its at its best when you go right into it blindly.. moving.. in fact this most definitley needs a movie.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tech Nut Phoenix, AZ 02-18-09
    Tech Nut Phoenix, AZ 02-18-09 Member Since 2005
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    5
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    Overall
    "Not chick lit"

    I hate chick lit. So, with a title like the History of Love, you might expect chick lit. Not so. Does this mean dudes will like it? Probably not, but it's not that ridiculous self-obsessed Sex in the City crap. This is a very touching book about love and a book about love. (You read that right.)

    I was charmed by both Leo and Alma. I was convinced of their ages and emotional states as much by the writing as the excellent narration. Alma's list-making was a particularly inventive way to tell her parts of the tale.

    Although, it seems a small part of the story, the book within a book also has some imaginative prose/ideas.

    I thought the author particularly bold in one instance to suggest that an obituary Leo has written is a superior and inspired piece of writing. We accept this as fact, forgetting that its author is not the fictional Leo, but Ms. Krauss. Suffice it to say, she is a talent.

    So, if you appreciate a creative yarn that's well written with quirky characters and NOT chick lit, this is a good option.

    17 of 22 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Everett Leiter New York, NY 02-09-09
    Everett Leiter New York, NY 02-09-09 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    362
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    Overall
    "Interesting story - a bit confusing at times"

    This novel has several narrators and a number of inter-related stories. I was drawn to this book because the town of Slonim (Belarus) is one of my ancestral towns, and some of the characters similarly emmigrated to Chile and the U.S., just as in my family. The separate, inter-related stories and characters were intriguing. However, it was just a tad confusing at times to keep them all straight! Worth the effort, and the resolution was satisfying.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    E yorba linda, CA, USA 12-17-07
    E yorba linda, CA, USA 12-17-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    3
    1
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    "palpable poetry on the page"

    I enjoyed this audiobook enough to know that I'd want to re-read and savor certain passages. One really needs to be able to *read* this to get at the narrative's richness. When I bought the book, I was surprised to see how much Krauss had taken into account the page layout -- indeed, the rhythm of turning pages and unfolding revelations. It's a beautiful book-thing, and I don't know how effectively an audiobook can approximate the white space of the page.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cate F. Richmond, VA USA 12-09-07
    Cate F. Richmond, VA USA 12-09-07

    needlewoman

    HELPFUL VOTES
    92
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    64
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    3
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    Overall
    "Believe the good ones"

    I'm so glad I didn't pay any attention to the poor reviews and followed the recommendations of the good ones. Funny, intelligent, literary, beautifully narrated.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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