I had so many questions upon finishing this book, I googled interviews with Nicole Krauss for further insight. She is deeply intelligent and thoughtful, both in writing and speaking, but I didn't learn the answers to my burning questions: Why did Leah hide the desk from her father? Did Dov end up dying, and if so, will Nadia be charged with manslaughter? How exactly did the Dov / Aaron story fit in with the rest of stories?
The writing is beautiful and I truly enjoyed the stories (and they did seen more like stories rather than a cohesive novel) as I was reading them, but it never fully clicked together for me. This probably says more about me than the book, but I don't care for unresolved plot lines at the end of a novel. Particularly when there are hints and suggestions of deeper connections that end up going nowhere.
Nicole Krauss explained that she was interested in exploring how people who suffered an immense loss survived and moved on (or didn't). I also find that extremely interesting, but I didn't find that theme here. The scale of loss - the slow end of a marriage, the death of an acquaintance you've met once - none of these seemed of the magnitude that warranted the moodiness, moping and/or the jerkiness with which the characters treated their loved ones. I am probably missing something here, but in the end I wanted to scream with frustration like Dov's father, GET OVER IT.