Lisa Vegan's Reviews > The Painted Bird

The Painted Bird by Jerzy Kosiński
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Jul 06, 07

bookshelves: fiction, reviewed, novel, holocaust, historical-fiction
Recommended for: all interested in holocaust literature, anyone who doesn't need to avoid disturbing books
Read in January, 1983

I read an earlier edition than this. I’ve read many, many holocaust era books and I’d already read quite a few when I read this one. And this says a lot, but this one might be the most horrifying one of them all. This was one of the most disturbing books I’ve ever read and yet I loved the book. I read it thinking it was non-fiction; years after I read it, I read that it was fiction, but that doesn’t diminish at all the impact I feel from reading it. It’s truly amazing what people can do to each other and also what people will go through in order to survive. Do recommend it but only for those with their own courage to plough through such a horrific tale.
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Comments (showing 1-3 of 3) (3 new)

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Meaghan I believe it might qualify, or is supposed to qualify, as "creative nonfiction." Kozinski always claimed the story was based very closely on his own wartime experiences, but there's a lot of controversy about that; several scholars claim they did research into his childhood and discovered it was not even close to being like this book. For instance, he and his parents supposedly stayed in touch with each other throughout the war, although they were hiding in separate hiding places.


Lisa Vegan Meaghan, I've heard pretty much the same things though I'm not sure I've heard the detail that he and his parents were able to stay in contact during that time.


Meaghan I never really liked this book. It was very episodic, and so horrific that it was almost pornographic.


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