All the Light We Cannot See

Written by Anthony Doerr

All the Light


This book has been on my Goodreads list forever.  I finally bought it at an airport.  Smart, considering I already had four books in my backpack for a four day trip (this is why I don’t let myself go into bookstores unattended).

What It’s About

If you look this book up, it is described as a story about a blind girl and a German boy in World War II France.  And that’s true.  But it’s also the story of a town called Saint Malo – how it is occupied, destroyed, and rebuilt.  It’s also a fairy tale of the old school, full of darkness and evil and danger and goodness and redemption.  And yes, it is a story about a girl and boy who live a world turned upside down.

The Good

This book is magical.  I was on a rampage recently about books that jump forward and backward in time.  It seemed like everything I read did that, and it seemed gimmicky and annoying.  That rant is over.  Apparently all I needed was an author who knew how to dance between time and characters in a way that added to the story.

Every character in this book was complete and full.  I wanted to know them.  I worried about them and hoped for them.  I can’t get them out of my head.

The Not-So-Good

I cannot think of a single thing I didn’t like about this book.  I’ve never read anything like it.

Final Thoughts

I didn’t want to stop reading this book, but I didn’t want it to end.  I read a lot of books from this time period (as you probably already know), but this one felt fresh and new.  I don’t have the right words to describe it without giving too much away.  Just read it, please.