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The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

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Mook Keerana

on 9 May 2010

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Transcript of The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

Humanities 8
Book Review #2 The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Author: John Boyne The End (: Summary The boy in the striped pajamas is a fiction novel about two unlikeliest friends. It all started out during World War 2 when Bruno, son of a Nazi officer and his family had to move from their home, Berlin to an unfamiliar place called " Out With" (i.e. Auschwitz). Due to the fact that they had moved to a place close to a concentration camp, Bruno was forbidded from going to certain areas. However, he finds himself in a place where has no one to talk to causing him to miss his house and best friends . One afternoon, being unable to hold back his adventurous spirit, Bruno sets off to investigate the area. One day, Bruno discovers a fence where he follows until he meets a boy sitting on the other side of the fence. Bruno starts talking to the boy and they immediately become friends. Bruno soons finds out that the boy's name is Shmuel, furthermore, they share the same birthday. Bruno would come to talk Shmuel everyday and he would always bring food with him. What Bruno doesnt know is that Shmuel is one of the people that are suffering in a concentration camp. Not only does he not know that, he is not realizing how much this relationship is having an impact on him. Their lives seem happy together, however, both of them seems sad about how they cannot go exploring or play a game of soccer together. Shmuel admits to Bruno that he can't find his father and he is afraid. Bruno promised Shmuel to help him find his father. Shmuel decided to bring Bruno the striped pajamas so that Bruno could enter the camp without anyone noticing. The day finally came when Bruno took off his normal clothes, change into the pajamas and crawled in to the other side of the fence. They both soon find themselves in deep trouble. Wonder what happened to Bruno and Shmuel? Read the novel to find out what happends behind the fences of the concentration camp in Auschwitz.
Personally, I would have to say that this novel is somewhat like the novel The Diary of Anne Frank and other novels that are written based on the Holocaust.What makes this novel different from the other novels is that it is told from the perspective of a German Boy who is the son of a Nazi officer. On other hand, The Diary of Anne Frank for example, is told from a perspective of Jew which is completely different. What makes this novel fascinating is that Bruno the main character, is naive and he happens to not know about what is happening around him. Not only is this novel told from a different perspective, the main theme which is friendship that is carried throughout the novel is rather different. Most friendship noveare about friends that come from similar backgrounds, but Bruno and Shmuel come from the complete opposite. Amazingly, John Boyne the author was able to interwove the two characters together perfectly. I have to say that it was fairly odd reading this novel because you happen to know more than the main character does. Obviously, a novel about the Holocaust is not going to have a perfect ending but the ending was like a punch in the face for me. I have to say I wasnt expecting it at all. Some of the characters in the novel are more complex than others. For example, Bruno's father is a German commandant that works in Auschwitz but he happens to be presented as a loving and caring father. This can be fairly confusing. Occasionally, there are parts in the novel that takes a little time to understand so you have to somewhat go back and reread the paragraph. I believe this is the only weakness about the story, so someone who is rather young wouldnt enjoy this story as much. I dont think I would reccomend this novel to someone younger than 12 years old because evil and violence is found at times throught the novel. I would highly reccomend this novel to a teenager or an adult. Actually, I think this novel is definitely on the must-read list. Critical Review By: Mook Keerana
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