The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas - John BoyneThe Boy in the Striped Pajamas is an unusual story, one of the most difficult and disturbing a teen will ever read. It is the story of an event seared into the fabric of history. It is a fable told through the voice of a child, but it is not for children, and this is not just any child. Bruno is nine years old, and he's not happy; his father has a new job and he's leaving his comfortable house, his neighborhood and his three best friends behind. His big sister Gretel is no help, for like older sisters everywhere, she's in a world all her own, though it's obvious she isn't thrilled about the move either. Their servants are tight-lipped and nervous, and Bruno's mother tries to explain that this is not only a promotion for his father, it's his duty. His father shows some but not much sympathy for Bruno.
Bruno is a nine-year-old from Berlin who has three best Friends For Life, an elder sister who is a Hopeless Case, and an ambition to be an Explorer. One day in someone called The Fury decides that Bruno's soldier father is to be posted, together with the whole family, to somewhere called Out-With, which is far away from Berlin, and quite possibly not in Germany at all. The new house is bleak and shabby, and from one side of it you can see a high-wired compound inhabited by sad-looking people in striped pyjamas. The great strength of Bruno's narrative is the way it is mired in the parochial preoccupations of a nine-year-old. While he is vaguely interested in what the striped-pyjama people do all day, his really righteous anger is reserved for Lieutenant Kotler, a supercilious year-old on his father's staff, who insists on ruffling his hair and calling him "little man".
Unlike the months of planning Boyne devoted to his other books, he said that he wrote the entire first draft of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas in two and a half days, barely sleeping until he got to the end. As of March , the novel had sold more than five million copies around the world. He lives with his parents, his year-old sister Gretel and maids, one of whom is called Maria. Bruno is initially upset about moving to Out-With in actuality, Auschwitz  and leaving his friends, Daniel, Karl and Martin. From the house at Out-With, Bruno sees a camp in which the prisoners wear "striped pyjamas" prison clothes.
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
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Nine year-old Bruno knows nothing of the Final Solution or the Holocaust. He is oblivious to the appalling cruelties being inflicted on the people of Europe by his country. All he knows is that he has been moved from a comfortable home in Berlin to a house in a desolate area where there is nothing to do and no one to play with. Until he meets Shmuel, a boy who lives a strange parallel existence on the other side of the adjoining wire fence and who, like the other people there, wears a uniform of striped pyjamas. And in exploring what he is unwittingly a part of, he will inevitably become subsumed by the terrible process. In the space of three days it had been read, and loved, by everybody in my house. The dog felt left out.
The novel begins in Germany in the s. Bruno comes home from school to find the maid, Maria, packing his things because the family is moving away from Berlin. Bruno's not happy about this and whines to his mom, dad, Gretel, the maid, and her dog we kid… about the dog part. But Bruno's out of luck; his father just got a promotion and they're moving on up, whether he wants to or not. Adding to Bruno's troubles, the family's new house is weak with a capital W —it's smaller than their old house, super isolated, and there's a huge wire fence near the property.