Erin's Reviews > The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne
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's review
May 17, 2010

it was ok
Read in May, 2010

I was very curious to pick up this book as it has become very popular both with readers and those who saw the recent movie based on the story. I enjoyed immediately that the story followed a young German boy from Berlin in 1942 whose father was involved at a high level under Hitler. Early on the main character, Bruno, was fairly difficult to relate to personally except for moments of kindness toward the maid in the house. I then became curious why it was on so many “must-read” lists as the book takes very unbelievable turns as Bruno befriends a boy living in “Out-With” as he calls the horrific concentration camp. In the classroom I think I would only use parts of this book teaching students different perspectives in Holocaust literature as the beginning tells an interesting story of obedience and vilification.

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Al_anna Smunt I didn't like that this story was written as a fable for kids who might already struggle to understand the gravity of the Holocaust. As an adult, I get Bruno's naive perspective, but how can we expect 4th graders to pick up on it? It might be a valuable read after already learning about the holocaust and exploring Bruno's perspective.

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