All the Light We Cannot See All the Light We Cannot See discussion

Why is this book so suspenseful?

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message 1: by Tim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tim Weed I can boil it down to two words: dramatic irony.

Here's my analysis:

What do you think?

Dolly The reader is waiting for the lives of the two children to cross paths?

message 3: by Tim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tim Weed In part, yes. But what really gets us is that we already "know" some of what's going to happen. This may seem odd, but it's quite effective. It's called dramatic irony, and it's a great technique for fiction writers to know. More on this here:

Sushant Karande I was also bored to wait when they are going to meet. But the way they met made me think this book worth read...

Delwyn thank you Tim for the link to your article, and thanks for explaining that over-riding feeling of anxiety I experienced when reading this book.

message 6: by Tim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tim Weed My pleasure!

message 7: by Donna (last edited Feb 24, 2015 04:06PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Donna There is a lot of symbolism in the book. I'm reading a Sidekick to the book which explains a lot of things that can be missed in the first reading. For example,the parallel between Marie-Laure's uncle, Etienne, and the Captain in Twenty Thousand Leagues under the Sea. I agree that the reader is just waiting for the two characters to meet and that creates a tension in the book. It's a surprise that a connection is drawn between Etienne and Werner though. I'm not sure how I feel about the ending and I guess there is an alternative ending in the Sidekick, which I am now reading. I thoroughly enjoyed the style of writing and use of numerous metaphors.

message 8: by Deborah (last edited Feb 25, 2015 11:57AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

Deborah I did not find this book suspenseful. It was a chore to pick up. I kept waiting for it to pick up!
It felt manipulative and full of "writers tricks".The short chapters were a failed cheap shot for a book that took ten years to write. A great writer could do better. Even his "beautiful sentences" felt overly crafted with gratuitous beautiful adjectives falling on the wrong sentence. But hey…
Readers are as varied and different as writers, and every other species in the world. There is no right or wrong; there are opinions. I was shocked at my own disappointment but glad that you and most everyone else loved it.

Kristi Casey There was no suspense. Ten years to write? Ten years to read.

Michael This was a trick question - right?

Read On! I didn't find the book particularly suspenseful. I found it more of an educating insight into the Germans occupying France and two very different people's experiences of WWII.
I thought it was a light drama and it may sound lame but I thought it was INTERESTING more than anything else - as I know very little of WWII.
However I did find it moving in parts.
I like books with short chapters. They always seem easier to read to me.

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