- Paperback: 544 pages
- Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers (23 April 2015)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0007548699
- ISBN-13: 978-0007548699
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 3.4 x 19.8 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 358 g
- Average Customer Review: 285 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,977 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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All the Light We Cannot See Paperback – 20 Jul 2015
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'Far more than a conventional war story, It's a tightly focused epic … Doerr paints with a rich palette, using prose that resonates deeply and conveys the ephemera of daily existence along with high drama, sadness and hope … A bittersweet and moving novel that lingers in the mind' Daily Mail
‘An epic work about bravery and the power of attachment’ Rose Tremain, Observer, Books of the Year
‘An epic and a masterpiece’ Justin Cartwright, Observer
‘This novel will be a piece of luck for anyone with a long plane journey or beach holiday ahead. It is such a page-turner, entirely absorbing… magnificent’ Guardian
‘Doerr can bring a scene to life in a single paragraph … Delicate and moving … the novel takes hold and will not easily let go’ The Times
‘Boy meets girl in Anthony Doerr’s hauntingly beautiful new book, but the circumstances are as elegantly circuitous as they can be’ The New York Times
‘I’m not sure I will read a better novel this year … Enthrallingly told, beautifully written and so emotionally plangent that some passages bring tears’ Washington Post
‘This jewel of a story is put together like a vintage timepiece … Doerr’s writing and imagery are stunning. It’s been a while since a novel had me under its spell in this fashion.’ Abraham Verghese
‘A dazzling, epic work of fiction. Anthony Doerr writes beautifully about the mythic and the intimate, about snails on beaches and armies on the move, about fate and love and history and those breathless, unbearable moments when they all come crashing together.’ Jess Walter
About the Author
Anthony Doerr was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio. He is the author of the story collections The Shell Collector and Memory Wall, and the novels About Grace and All the Light We Cannot See, which was awarded the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the 2015 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction. Doerr's short stories have won the 2010 Story Prize, which is considered the most prestigious prize in the U.S. for a collection of short stories, and the Sunday Times EFG Short Story Award, which is the largest prize in the world for a single short story. His work has been translated into over forty languages. Doerr lives in Boise, Idaho with his wife and two sons.
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Many of the characters are warm and delightful, some plain evil and some purely unthinking about their actions and the results. The connecting link of the pre war radio broadcasts and their influence and the possible power of the stone were an additional involvement.
This World War II story follows the journey of two young people both with totally different handicaps and outcomes.Marie Laure protected and cherished since birth, was taught to cope in a dark and frightening world. Werner an orphan learned to find his own way only seeing the evil in his direction as he struggled .
The main characters are believable and loveable, and the name of the book appropriate from the view point of the actual. blindness of Marie Laure, to Werner's struggle to better himself and failure to recognise the evil he was being sucked into. A weak ending but truer to life than the conjoined ending Between the two leads that I had foreseen!a
We see Europe at war and the effects of war on two young people. Marie Laure is a gentle, blind french girl and Werner, a german soldier. I loved the writing style and felt strongly for these two characters who seem so real and normal. With them we confront the personal losses and privations of war and, like them we ask questions.
This is a book to treasure. One of the very best. Don't miss it. Savour every detail and it will linger long after the last page has been turned.
It is gauche to lift an incident ("He fixes radio by thinking") straight out of Nobel Prize winner Richard Feynman s autobiographical stories and assign it to a child half Feynman s age at the time, as if to make Werner twice as smart.
The radio blunders are also historical. Elementary research would have shown that Grundig did not make radios until after the War. It is anomalous to have a Nazi officer own an American Philco while German Telefunkin and Siemans radios of the period were just as complex, and as emphasised in the book, it was unpatriotic to own a US one. Dirty cardboard cutout Russian rapists have crude and contemptible radios. In fact, Russian army field radios were either supplied by the US or close copies. None were "milled out of steel".
Though Werner s radio location team hunted in areas with the German armies and SS extermination squads that massacred prisoners, Jews, Poles and Russian civilians alike, there is no mention of this.
The historical setting of wartime France, particularly after 1943, is unrealistic because the roles of the Resistance, collaborators and the Vichy government are ignored. As D-day approached it would have been dangerous for lone German officers and soldiers to wander about, especially if they were robbing French civilians. No acts of sabotage are recounted, yet the Hotel of the Bees which housed an 88 never lost power or supplies. By the way, bumblebees do not make honey.
My instincts had told me that these two main characters would somehow connect, but it was in a way that was totally unexpected. There are many underlying stories interwoven:- the journeys of Marie-Laure's beloved Papa and his uncle Etienne; the mysterious diamond, "The Sea of Flames"; Werner's sister, Jutta; the "giant" soldier, Volkheimer; Werner's gentle friend, Frederick; and the relentlessly obsessive Von Rumpel. "All the Light We Cannot See" is a story about good, evil, courage, survival, hope for the future, and unexpected connections. Many images stayed with me long after the story ended. Five stars is not enough for this engrossing classic.
The only reason I haven't given this 5 stars is that the chapters are very short and they switch in time and place and between the main characters so quickly. I know we all have shorter attention spans these days because of interruptions from emails, messages and phones, but I want my books to help me extend my attention span again.
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