Top critical review
6 people found this helpful
interesting plot but so-so writing quality
on January 14, 2007
This is a fiction book geared towards 9- to 12-year-olds. The reader gradually learns who the hero of the book is, through his recalling recent events in his family's move from Berlin to "Out-With".The plot is fairly interesting and the character development not too bad. The author should have continuously reminded himself, though, that he should be speaking and thinking like a 9-year-old. Too many times he puts words and thoughts into little Bruno's mouth and head that no 9-year-old would have in his vocabulary. And so many of the expressions are British/Irish, not German. Like telling his friend to put on a "jumper" when he is cold. The book needs a good editing, to remove these kinds of inaccuracies. There was also puerile use of repetition. I thought I would close the book at one point if the author used the phrase "Hopeless Case" one more time to refer to Bruno's older sister, or the description of his father's office as being "Out of Bounds At All Times And No Exceptions". What is the point of all this capitalization? Is he trying to sound like A.A. Milne's "Winnie the Pooh"? I realize it is difficult to come down to a child's level when trying to teach something as horrible as the Holocaust, and the author tried. I much preferred books by Carol Matas (Lisa's War, After the War), Lois Lowry (Number the Stars) for fictional accounts, and such ones as Daniel's Story for non-fiction.