Everything is Illuminated

Story of author searching a lady in modern Ukraine, who helped his parents escape Nazi holocaust, with the help of an American pop culture obsessed Ukrainian young adult, his almost blind grandfather and their dog, who goes by a rather sophisticated name- Sammy Davis Junior Junior. Book is written in rather three portions intertwined between each other in a linear timeline, two autobiographies and a letter reaction series.

And I had to force myself to sit through the fictional biography of authors forefathers, which moved from a funny touching anecdote to one dragging, uncomfortable, disgusting account of their sexual adventures and extra marital affairs. And having them all in first person made it more annoying. Well here is the clever part, forefather biography was always followed by a correspondence review from his Ukrainian companion which however summarized all the anger I felt to his writing as a reader. It made me cut some slack to be honest and move on with the good bits. Jonathan seemed like an expert at confusing what is with what was with what should be with what could be. đŸ™‚

The main story, the quest for a long lost city had me quite intrigued. It was genuinely funny, engaging and kinda well written from the perspective of a guy with limited vocabulary. Only to ruin it all with some crappy ending. I would give 4 stars to the letters and quest, and maybe some 2 stars for his novel.


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