LFPL Teen Services's Reviews > The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
by John Boyne
by John Boyne
Nine year old Bruno leads an ideal childhood in Nazi Germany. After a recent visit from the "Fury" Bruno’s father, an "important man" is reassigned to "Out-With." Bruno thinks his father must have done something to make the Fury mad for him to send the family to such a dreadful place. From Bruno’s bedroom window, he can see many people living on the other side of a tall fence that seems to stretch on forever. The people don’t seem very happy, and they certainly aren’t very clean. The oddest thing of all, though, is the fact that all the people are wearing matching striped pajamas. Bruno sets out to explore, despite strict warnings from his father that he is to stay away from the fence and the people living on the other side. Bruno discovers a boy about his age and, by meeting and talking every day, they become good friends. One day, Bruno is determined to find out what life is like on the other side of the fence. His friend, Shmuel, sneaks him a pair of pajamas, Bruno changes out of his clothes, lifts the barbed wire, and easily slips beneath the fence. Bruno doesn’t like the place at all. It’s too crowded and muddy, and it has begun to rain. Just as he has decided to go home, soldiers come to round up a group of people and take them on a march. Bruno is not sure where they are going, but hopes the march won’t take long because he’ll be in trouble if he’s not home in time for dinner. Thankfully, the march ends in a large building; Bruno is glad to be out of the rain. Suddenly, the room goes black and he grabs Shmuel’s hand. Bruno is never heard from again. It will take his grieving parents months to guess at his true fate.
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