Author: Anthony Doerr
This book will take you down a path of history, in a way that is uniquely eye opening. We have all heard snippets of this time in history and there are lessons to be learnt from it. I don't think that we should close our eyes to the past, only to risk being ignorant enough to let things happen again. In this writing, although fictional, I was taken into the lives of so many individuals. I followed every character for different reasons. I sat hour after hour turning the pages, unable to close the book.
I was firstly taken into to the life of a little orphan boy who just wanted to make things and learn. I have a little boy (sorry he is young man now 😄) who also pulled everything apart with the mission to make it go or make it better. He too wanted to know everything about everything. Here I sat reading about a boy who was clever beyond his years but it was taken and used in a way that he couldn't escape. We can't close our eyes to the fact that not everyone was evil but rather many were surviving. This young man was one of the many surviving, but he did find a way to follow his heart and do the right thing. Did he remain a survivor ...?
Then I was enticed into the life of a little girl who was blind. And her wonderful father who was able to teach her the city via little wooden models so intricate, each containing a puzzle, uniquely made for her with his own hands. I was fascinated by these two characters. I was drawn into their world and walked with her throughout the pages. She couldn't see the world visually but in reality she saw more than anyone else. She was courageous and strong. She was survivor.... or?
Every other character had a special part to play in the book. I think I wanted to know more about everyone of them. I closed the book wanting to know more about the survivors? And in some cases if they survived. Really, pick up the book and follow the lives of the these individuals and see how connected we all are. See how every little thing that we do can be influencing someone that we know little about. Interesting concept really.
I want to talk a little about the symbolisms in this book. There are replica's and models, secrets, and radios. Together they all intertwined the lives of everyone. I was left thinking about these upon closing the final page. The little houses that Marie-Laure's father made sounded wonderful to me. They held a puzzle and a gift. They need knowledge to open them. But one would harbour a secret. Same with radios that Werner would make. They started as a joy and thrill of the ability to find a away to create. It was also a way to gain knowledge as the children listened to the stories on them, when fixed. But.... in secret. Everything a secret. Werner ended up seeking radios which were hidden. Secret after secret revelled in the things that were once treasures. If I was given an assignment to write an essay on this, I think I could go down so many rabbit holes. This books holds many answers but at the same it leaves me with questions.
Put this book on your 'To Be Read' list if you want a page turner.
For Marie-Laure, blind since the age of six, the world is full of mazes. The miniature of a Paris neighbourhood, made by her father to teach her the way home. The microscopic layers within the invaluable diamond that her father guards in the Museum of Natural History. The walled city by the sea, where father and daughter take refuge when the Nazis invade Paris. And a future which draws her ever closer to Werner, a German orphan, destined to labour in the mines until a broken radio fills his life with possibility and brings him to the notice of the Hitler Youth.
In this magnificent, deeply moving novel, the stories of
Marie-Laure and Werner illuminate the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another.