All the Light We Cannot See is a historical fiction novel about WWII from the perspective of two kids. I found this book at my school library. This is the tale of a blind French girl, Marie-Laure, and an orphan, Werner. He has a knack for engineering, which lands him a place in the brutal military academy, the Hitler Youth Group. Marie-Laure and her father must flee after the Nazis occupy Paris, carrying a jewel rumored to have protection powers. Her great-uncle owns a radio, and together they work with the resistance, broadcasting coded messages to end the war. Unbeknownst to them, they are in grave danger.
I wanted to love this book, I really did. It's the winner of the Pulitzer Prize, National Book Award finalist, and Goodreads choice awards winner in 2014! So, this has a really good reputation, and I had extremely high hopes. Unfortunately, it took all my strength to finish it. I never stop reading a book in order to accurately review it, and I always hope that it would get better at the end. All the Light We Cannot See did not.
All the characters were flat and I had no interest in them whatsoever. Quite frankly, I did not care if they ended up dead or alive. That's really harsh, I know, but there was nothing special about them that made me connect to them or stick with them. Maybe it would have helped if it was written in first person because the characters were so distant. They did not take any risks, they did not change at all. Werner and Marie didn't even meet until the last like 50 pages. The book is 500 pages long!!! It made me angry that he was just like a statue. Honestly, I'm not sure what the point was of the characters' existence.
Every chapter was a page, and it kept switching perspectives of so many characters that I couldn't keep track. By the end of the book, I sadly could not remember half of them. It's safe to say this book isn't very memorable. I'm not sure why people like it so much and gave it so many awards. Also, I wanted more of the war, the fighting. I understand the book is about innocence, but it was too innocent. They are working with the resistance, but they don't even know what they are resisting! Don't expect to learn about the war by reading this book. Okay, and the diamond? What in the world was the point? That little fairy tale had no impact on the plot at all.
I don't know, maybe adults would appreciate this book more, but I personally really didn't like it at all. I don't recommend this book.
Title: All the Light We Cannot See
Author: Anthony Doerr
Rating: 1 Star