Extremely Patient and Incredibly Careful

December 21, 2015 | 2 books mentioned 2

It looks like Jonathan Safran Foer will be publishing his first novel in eleven years next fall. The book, tentatively titled Here I Am, is the story of an American Jewish family, set against a background of traumatic events in the Middle East including earthquakes and an invasion of Israel. Foer’s last novel, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close, enjoyed tremendous critical and commercial success. Here’s a piece on JSF’s crazy, confusing, die-cut book Tree of Codes.

is an intern for The Millions. He reads and resides in North Carolina. Brian can be found on Twitter @jbetling, and in the real world behind the counter of Scuppernong Books in Greensboro, NC.


  1. Our most insufferable novelist strikes again! Apparently he is taking a break from crafting masterpieces on the side of fast food cups and lecture-shaming people who like burgers to focus on his first love: pretentious, preposterous fiction. Hey, perhaps he will figure out a way to reduce the long bloody history of the Middle East into a cutesy flip book like he did for 9/11! That would be so precious.

    Seriously, why do sites like the Millions prop up writers like this? “Tremendous critical success”? That book was excoriated. It’s perhaps the worst book of the millennium. I repeat: It ends with a fucking flip book depicting someone falling from the towers on 9/11. The polite, whitewashed lit culture of today is really wreaking havoc on the quality of our literature. I suppose, like anything, it’s about money: J4 sells, so the Millions covers him so it can sell ads. Sigh. Quality is an afterthought these days; first and foremost concern is keeping the machine well-oiled and profitable.

    The Millions used to be good but now it’s barely more than a PR extension of the buttoned-up corporate publishing industry. Another one bites the dust…see ya!

  2. I dunno, I really like Everything is Illuminated, scenes from which stay with me years later. Haven’t read the others so can’t speak to them, but I found him to be funny, touching, and very readable in my o book sampling. Different strokes, I guess.

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