Monday, September 24, 2007

The boy in the striped pyjamas

Hi again

I have just read an amazing book, sent to me by my good friend, Cristina Miranda. It is so good I am writing about it in my blog, which is usually reserved for more domestic and mundane aspects of my daily life.

It is a book written by the Irish writer, John Boyne and is supposedly for children but really only adults will understand the full nuance of the book which is about a 9 year old boy struggling to understand what is happening around him in Auschwitz during the Second World War. He is uprooted from his comfortable home in Berlin to Poland where his Father, unknowingly to him, is made the Camp Commander by personal intervention from whom he calls “The Fury”. From his attic window in his new bedroom he can just glimpse some people in a field wondering around in “pyjamas” and cannot understand what they are doing there or why they are wearing pyjamas. When he dares to ask his Father, he is told “Oh, them; they are not people”.

I won’t tell you more and just hope I have wetted your appetite sufficiently to look out for this jewel of a book which can actually be read in one go.

I cannot recommend it more highly. It has left me with a haunting feeling and a sort of emptiness inside.


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