A 2014 World Book Night selection.
Initially it is difficult to believe that the young son of the commandant of Auschwitz is as innocent as he is, then you begin to accept his ignorance and follow a developing friendship through to its dreadful conclusion. That this is written for children is easy to forget. I urge you to read Morris Gleitzman’s Once, too, for the Jewish perspective.
A "Piece of Passion" from the publisher...
‘This is a short book but it packs a huge emotional punch. It leaves you feeling emotionally drained and desperate to talk to someone else who has read it to share your experience. I read the book with a mounting chill, almost knowing what would happen but hoping against hope that it wouldn’t. This is one of the few books that genuinely appeals to both adults and children and can, and indeed should, be read by all ages.' Judith Welsh, Managing Editor at Transworld
Nine-year-old Bruno knows nothing of the Final Solution or the Holocaust. He is oblivious to the appalling cruelties being inflicted on the people of Europe by his country. All he knows is that he has been moved from a comfortable home in Berlin to a house in a desolate area where there is nothing to do and no one to play with. Until he meets Shmuel, a boy who lives a strange parallel existence on the other side of the adjoining wire fence and who, like the other people there, wears a uniform of striped pyjamas.
Bruno’s friendship with Shmuel will take him from innocence to revelation. And in exploring what he is unwittingly a part of, he will inevitably become subsumed by the terrible process.
|Publication date:||2nd August 2012|
|Publisher:||Vintage Children's Classics an imprint of Vintage|
|Primary Genre||Modern and Contemporary Fiction|
Closing date: 07/10/2021
Simply written and highly memorable.There are no monstrosities on the page but the true horror is all the more potent for being implicit
Ireland on Sunday
Stays ahead of its readers before delivering its killer-punch final pages
An extraordinary tale of friendship and the horrors of war…Raw literary talent at its best
The Holocaust as a subject insists on respect, precludes criticism, prefers silence.One thing is clear: this book will not go gently into any good night
John Boyne was our Guest Editor in May 2010 - click here - to see the books that inspired his writing. John Boyne was born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1971, and studied English Literature at Trinity College, Dublin, and creative writing at the University of East Anglia, Norwich, where he was awarded the Curtis Brown prize. His early writing consisted mostly of short stories and he published a number of them. His first story, The Entertainments Jar, was shortlisted for the Hennessy Literary Award in Ireland. In total, he has published about 70 short stories. He has published seven novels: THE THIEF ...More About John Boyne