Having seen The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne being reviewed by bloggers, I knew I wanted to read it sometime. But when I saw this book sitting on the library shelf, it screamed at me, “pick me, pick me!” How can I say no when a book just screams at you, begging to be taken home and read.
To tell you the truth I had NO idea what this book was about. I knew nothing about the subject matter, when it took place, etc. I hate knowing too much about a book before I read it, so I purposely glance through the reviews and then go back and read them in full after I’ve read the book. So in keeping that I knew nothing about the book and in keeping with the fact that this is what the dust jacket says, I will not summarize this book in any way:
The story of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is very difficult to describe. Usually we give some clues about the book on the jacket, but in this case we think that would spil the reading of the book. We think it is important that you start to read without knowing what it is about.
If you do start to read this book, you will go on a journey with a nine-year0old boy called Bruno. (Though this isn’t a book for nine-year-olds.) And sooner or later you will arrive with Bruno at a fence.
Fences like this exist all over the world. We hope you never have to encounter such a fence.
If I was smarter, I probably could have figured out what this book was about from the dust jacket. But to tell you the truth I was on page 20 when I realized where this story was headed.
I did think that Bruno, the main character in the story, was much to ignorant and naive for a nine-year old, which is what this book (among some other things I can’t give away) is about. I think any nine-year old would have been smarter than this kid. I’d believe it if maybe he were about six or so. His ignorance isn’t good for him and I could not believe how the book ended! I was shocked. And I didn’t even feel sorry for his father.
So based on the fact that I haven’t given you any details about this book, I would highly recommend that you go and get it. This book is currently being made into a movie. But I couldn’t find a release date for here in the U.S., just Ireland and the U.K. I hope it comes here, I am curious to how it would play out on screen. Edited: Saw the movie and it is FANTASTIC!
Trailer (watching it will totally tell you what the book is about though):
Links of interest: John Boyne’s website. Book club and discussion questions available from BookBrowse. More book blogger reviews.
Genre: Young Adult Historical Fiction, Fable
Publisher: OUP May 31, 2007.
Paperback, 224 pages. ISBN 0198326769
Source copy: Library (and later purchased)
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is available from your favorite independent bookstore, Powell’s, and Amazon.