Out of the Shoebox is a fascinating journal that reads like a detective story, comes across as an imaginative quest into the past, yet is the true personal story of the writer, Yaron Reshef.
An unexpected phone call hurls Reshef into an intensive two-year journey, during which he has to solve a mystery that took shape in the 1930s and gradually unfolded in the present. A mysterious lot, a forgotten bank account, a people long gone – along with their memory which were obliterated during the Holocaust. All of these rise to the surface, bearing with them memories and emotions previously hidden away in the shoebox.
This is a well-written book. Reshef clearly has a gift for storytelling and for language. The words flow beautifully, but in many cases, a little too beautifully. I found it difficult to focus on the story for the flowery prose. I agree with other reviewers who have said that you feel like you’re searching along with Reshef, but for me, that was too much detail and too much information. I felt like I was waiting for the “so what” moment, and while the writing was beautiful, it wasn’t enough to make up for the overwhelming feeling I got reading it. In some senses I think this was partly because the book is written in 1st person. It reads like a play-by-play. You’re privy to every thought, every motivation, and every detail of Reshef’s search. As a reader, I prefer to draw my own conclusions. Don’t get me wrong – I think this is a great book for the right kind of reader, but sadly, that reader isn’t me.
I received the product mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com.