Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen Vincent of Teach Mentor Texts decided to give Kathryn’s (at Book Date) “It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?” meme a kidlit focus, reviewing books in children’s literature (picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels, or anything in the world of kidlit). If you enjoy this type of reading, join us every Monday to share what you’ve been reading!
This will probably be one of my shortest posts of 2019. It turns out sanding, priming, painting, installing new doors, cleaning, and beginning the process of packing up a family of seven is time consuming. Therefore, I only finished one book this week AND I believe this is the first post where I don’t have a kidlit, mglit, or yalit book reviewed. Oh my, I’m sure breaking the rules this week. 🙂 I look forward to hearing what all you’ve been reading!
All the Light We Cannot See
May 6, 2014
This title was another one listed on my #MustReadin2019 challenge and it was also part of my #BigBookSummer challenge since it was 531 pages. I’ve been hearing about it for a long time as it was both a Pulitzer Prize winner and a finalist for the National Book Award (and won many other awards, as well).
All the Light We Cannot See is a moving story that centers primarily on the lives of two young adults during WWII. Werner is an orphan, along with his sister, Jutta. Without parents, he knows he has no support, no money, and no future other than working in the mines. However, Vernor is particularly gifted in mathematics and, specifically, radio technology — and he’s entirely self-driven and self-taught. Once his abilities are discovered, he is given a unique responsibility as a soldier for Germany in WWII. The other main character is Marie-Laure. She’s 12 years old, French, blind, clever, brave, and her father is a master locksmith who taught her to see the world with her other senses. At some point, she ends up living with her great uncle, Etienne (who I assume is suffering from PTSD), who adds another level to the story because of his painful experiences.
I love how this story told the truth of these opposing sides in such depth, humanizing the experience of both civilians and soldiers. And as a reader, I felt the push and pull of wanting to be patriotic while worrying about being on the “wrong” side. Also, there’s constant discussion of sounds, colors, and light, which really makes me wish I’d read this in a book club so I could talk it out and bounce thoughts/feelings off others. Maybe I’ll get the chance on down the road because this one is definitely worth a re-read. The depth of love, the worries and fears, and the family relationships were so tangible. Highly recommend!
AWARDS: Pulitzer Prize for Fiction (2015), Audie Award for Fiction (2015), ALA Alex Award (2015), Dayton Literary Peace Prize for Fiction (Runner-Up) (2015), Ohioana Book Award for Fiction (2015), Australian Book Industry Award (ABIA) for International Book (2015), Andrew Carnegie Medal for Fiction (2015), Idaho Book of the Year Award (2014), National Book Award Finalist for Fiction (2014), Goodreads Choice Award for Historical Fiction (2014), and Nominee for Best of the Best (2018), International DUBLIN Literary Award Nominee (2016), any I missed?
To Be Read:
I picked up Arlo Finch: In the Valley of Fire earlier this week when I found it available as an audiobook. I’m doing a lot of listening while I work and this has kept my attention quite nicely. I’m about halfway through this one and should be finished by next week. I also have an ARC of The House at the End of the Road that I hope to review, next week.