I have just finished reading ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ by John Boyne. I read it in two sittings. There are not many books that make me want to read on and on until finishing. Admittedly, the book is quite short (216 pages). A fast but addictive read. After finishing the book I was left speechless.
The story, based on a German boy called Bruce Hoess, takes the reader back to life in 1940. It centres around the Auschwitz ‘death’ (concentration) camp in Poland where Bruce is moved when his father is promoted to the position of Obersturmbannführer, a paramilitary Nazi Party rank used by both the SA and the SS. Bruce and his family live in the guard house and it is only after some exploring and questioning that Bruce begins to become more aware of who the people are on the other side of the fence.
The innocence of Bruno and the friendship that grows between him and Shmuel is heartwarming. The book touches on the horrendous truths of what happened back during World War II. By the end of the story the hairs on my arms were standing on end….