ALL THE LIGHT YOU CANNOT SEE by Anthony Doerr (Fourth Estate, 2014)

 "Open your eyes and see what you can with them before they close forever"

 51mfo0a70zl-_sx331_bo1204203200_This engrossing novel follows the parallel lives of a young German boy (Werner Pffnig) and a young French girl (Marie Laure) caught up in the mayhem and confusion of the second world war.

The novel’s year zero is 1944 and the complex yet brilliant plotted story shifts back and forward in time.

Short chapters give the urgency of a thriller yet patiently piece together the threads that briefly and movingly bring these two blighted lives together.

Doerr unsentimentally shows us how ordinary lives are corrupted by the horror of war.

One of the real strengths of the novel is that our sympathies lie with both of the main characters even though conventionally speaking they are mortal enemies and Werner is alined with the morally depraved Hitler youth. Continue reading

Advertisements