I guess I picked this book up because of the pretentious title - "The Discovery of Heaven!" , and also because I noted that it was largely based in Amsterdam, a city I love. And because I'm trying to work my way into Fiction after years of addiction to Non-Fiction. The addiction is cured, or should I say more accurately, reversed. I had forgotten how a good novel can transcend reality, but paradoxically, be more relevant to our lives than straight non-fiction. If potential readers are interested in male friendships, single parenthood, questionable paternity, astronomy, biblical studies, linguistics, european travel, history, the holocaust, amsterdam city living, theology, or just about any other topic for that matter, settle back for a few weeks (730 pages!) at night with this master tome. . This is one of those books that causes you to begin slowing down your reading pace towards the last 200 pages or so, re-reading passages, and reflecting on paragraphs, so as to postpone the painful time when you will no longer be reading it. I now find myself considering something I've never done before in my 44 years: Re-reading an entire book simply for pleasure.