All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr - Anthony Doerr

All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr Book Score: 4.5 0 5
4.5 star
7,311 Ratings

All the Light We Cannot See Book Summary

WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE
From the highly acclaimed, multiple award-winning Anthony Doerr, the beautiful, stunningly ambitious instant New York Times bestseller about a blind French girl and a German boy whose paths collide in occupied France as both try to survive the devastation of World War II.

Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is twelve, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel.

In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.

Doerr’s “stunning sense of physical detail and gorgeous metaphors” (San Francisco Chronicle) are dazzling. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, he illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another. Ten years in the writing, a National Book Award finalist, All the Light We Cannot See is a magnificent, deeply moving novel from a writer “whose sentences never fail to thrill” (Los Angeles Times).




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All the Light We Cannot See Book Comments


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All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr Book Reviews

  • A literal journey (OregonJoereads)

    Although many other reviews state that the book starts off slow or that the characters are hard to connect with I did not feel that way. Right from the jump it pulled me in and made me want to read more. The author’s language and imagery never fail to paint precise scenes in your mind. The storytelling and connections among characters also intertwine beautiful all throughout the book. Truly a good read from start to finish.
  • Loved it! (LaurieA1998)

    Great book!
  • Was a tough read (Bjmedd)

    I’m not saying this wasn’t a good book. It was just a hard read. Disjointed. I get what the author was doing, but it was just too disjointed for my liking. I’m by no means a simpleton, however, when I have to look up the meaning of the author’s words every other paragraph, that gets old. Almost like his ego is based on how many obscure words he can fit in. The story itself could have been amazing, if I wasn’t slogging through trying to read a disjointed, wordy book.
  • Magnificent (Peonies+Magnokia)

    The story is woven together beautifully with well thought out characters and intricate details. I loved it!
  • Beautiful book (DarbyBoom)

    A remarkable novel. Sad, sweet and incredibly touching
  • Fantastic (Kristin)

    One of my top 5 all-time favorite novels.
  • All the Light We Cannot See (Winston357)

    Really enjoyed this book. I read it sporadically when time allowed and could not wait to get back to it. The story itself is inspiring but the descriptions and things this blind girl could “see” were what made the book.
  • Beautiful book! (Frazzled but hopeful)

    So beautiful, even the ugliest parts of war, tragic and awful are somehow made poetically beautiful. I found this to be the perfect beach book, leisurely winding down a multi-stranded path, with tension mounting to pull you through!
  • Breathtaking (jt_shafer)

    I’ve never before had simple words move me so deeply. The author had my heart on a pendulum, from elation to devastation. He captured what I imagine to be the honest essence of what the horrors of that war did to everyone in its wake. The characters feel as if they are actual acquaintances of mine, such minute detail was used in describing the hows & whys of what they did. I cannot recommend this book highly enough.
  • Meh (tinbucktwo)

    Much has been made of this novel, which in my opinion could have been reduced by 200 pages while still keeping its voice. Great prose but it plods and plods. Overrated.

All the Light We Cannot See - Anthony Doerr Book Reviews

  • Could not stop reading (dantheLEGOman)

    Very well written with most compelling characters. Historical background story is very accurate. Highly recommended (I see Tom Hanks in the role of Etienne ;=) )
  • So very good... (CharlemagneIII)

    I’m not good with words… I just couldn’t resist putting a 5-star rating here so that people might choose this wonderful book ahead of another one. It’s so worth the time.
  • All the Light We Cannot See (frsky now)

    This book is incredibly well written, a masterpiece, a work of art. A must read!
  • Crap (Robert Aubrey)

    A pale, vapid imitation of Hemingway that co-opts both times and places with which the author is unfamiliar, and is original only in the extent of its aesthetic redundancy on a literary stage replete with such works
  • Amazing book (Zxcv156)

    Hard to define the category. A wonderful book that combines suspense, mystery, romance, tragedy set in a backdrop of rapidly changing history. Characters that live on after you close the book and a story that you don't want to end. One of the best books I have ever read.
  • Amazing (Killer2794)

    This book is truly amazing. The amount of detail bring the story to life and you become so involved with the lives of the characters. Really gives you a beautiful look at the nature of people and the brutality of the war.
  • If I could (Pacific1971)

    All The Light We Cannot See, is, as it's title suggests, purely made of magic. The story, the characters are so unassuming they will absorb you (and all your time) in a Carol Shields esque trap. Just one more sentence, paragraph, chapter, until you smile and realize your far down this rabbit hole that you have no desire to come back up. Almost every sentence is a reduction, a photograph made of poetry and still finds traction in historical accuracy; so is it an extended poem, a beautiful work of historical fiction? It finds a balance between both, very real and effortlessly enchanting. Not to compare, never to compare, but it is The Fabulous Life of Amelie entwined with The Piano and spiced with a dash of Luka and The Fire Of Life. If I could I would use the same entwining of poetry prose and verbal photography to capture and describe the elegance of this book but then if I could I would have written it. If I could....

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