The passion for specificity is at the heart of the task to which every American novelist has been enjoined since Herman Melville and his whale and Mark Twain and his river: to discover the most arresting, evocative verbal depiction of every last American thing. Concreteness...is fiction's lifeblood. From this physicalness the realistic novel derives its ruthless intimacy.
When the Holy One created Adam, He took him for a tour of all the trees in the Garden of Eden, and He said to him: See how My works are so glorious and pleasant! All of this, I have created for you! Make sure that you do not ruin and destroy My world, for if you do, no one will be able to fix it after you are gone! (Midrash Ecclesiastes Rabba).