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The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Hardcover – Deckle Edge, September 12, 2006


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The Boy in the Striped Pajamas + The Book Thief + The Fault in Our Stars
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This Book Is Bound with "Deckle Edge" Paper
You may have noticed that some of our books are identified as "deckle edge" in the title. Deckle edge books are bound with pages that are made to resemble handmade paper by applying a frayed texture to the edges. Deckle edge is an ornamental feature designed to set certain titles apart from books with machine-cut pages. See a larger image.

Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 1080L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: David Fickling Books; First American Edition edition (September 12, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385610556
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385751063
  • ASIN: 0385751060
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (949 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #45,920 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Book Description

This work was set in Berlin, 1942. When Bruno returns home from school one day, he discovers that his belongings are being packed in crates. His father has received a promotion and the family must move from their home to a new house far far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. A tall fence running alongside stretches as far as the eye can see and cuts him off from the strange people he can see in the distance. But, Bruno longs to be an explorer and decides that there must be more to this desolate new place than what meets the eye. While exploring his new environment, he meets another boy whose life and circumstances are very different to his own, and their meeting results in a friendship that has devastating consequences. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is now a major motion picture (releasing in November 2008). Enjoy these images from the film, and click the thumbnails to see a larger image in a new browser window.



--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Grade 9 Up–Boyne has written a sort of historical allegory–a spare, but vividly descriptive tale that clearly elucidates the atmosphere in Nazi Germany during the early 1940s that enabled the persecution of Eastern European Jews. Through the eyes of Bruno, a naive nine-year-old raised in a privileged household by strict parents whose expectations included good manners and unquestioning respect for parental authority, the author describes a visit from the Fury and the familys sudden move from Berlin to a place called Out-With in Poland. There, not 50 feet away, a high wire fence surrounds a huge dirt area of low huts and large square buildings. From his bedroom window, Bruno can see hundreds (maybe thousands) of people wearing striped pajamas and caps, and something made him feel very cold and unsafe. Uncertain of what his father actually does for a living, the boy is eager to discover the secret of the people on the other side. He follows the fence into the distance, where he meets Shmuel, a skinny, sad-looking Jewish resident who, amazingly, has his same birth date. Bruno shares his thoughts and feelings with Shmuel, some of his food, and his final day at Out-With, knowing instinctively that his father must never learn about this friendship. While only hinting at violence, blind hatred, and deplorable conditions, Boyne has included pointed examples of bullying and fearfulness. His combination of strong characterization and simple, honest narrative make this powerful and memorable tale a unique addition to Holocaust literature for those who already have some knowledge of Hitlers Final Solution.–Susan Scheps, Shaker Heights Public Library, OH
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

More About the Author

John Boyne was born in Ireland in 1971 and is the author of seven novels for adults and three for children. The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas won two Irish Book Awards, was shortlisted for the British Book Award, reached no.1 on the New York Times Bestseller List and was made into an award-winning Miramax feature film. His novels are published in over 45 languages. He lives in Dublin.

Customer Reviews

This was a great book and written very well.
Kimberley L. Loper
The book gave insight into the boy's thoughts and by reading it you really do not know exactly what happened at the end.
CAF1690
She read the book first and then we watched the movie.
jbeanfrost

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

217 of 234 people found the following review helpful By K. Corn TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on February 10, 2008
Format: Paperback
I've read many books that fall into the "Holocaust literature" category. This one may actually be a book that is written in a style that COULD be read by a child but should be read by adults. Whether it is suitable for children depends on how sensitive your child is- and how well you think he or she could handle some very graphic details. They aren't "graphic" in the sense of being spelled out in detail but the reader's imagination can fill in the blanks. At age 9, this book would have been far too intense for me - and the main character in this one, Bruno, is age 9.

The author used a technique which was brilliant, taking readers into the mind and thoughts of a child whose father work for the "Fury" (the Fuhrer) and who is sent to live in Out-With (Auschwitz), on the safe side of the fence, in an actual home.

The novel is labeled "a fable" and I think this was a wise choice by both author and publisher. After all, no one knows exactly how a 9 year old son of a German officer would think and young Bruno seems remarkably naive sometimes. But just as light sets off shadows more vividly, I think his exaggerated innocence allows readers to experience the horrors of Auschwitz that much more. For that reason, I don't think the accuracy of Bruno's character is all that important. The effect on the reader (THIS reader, anyway) is profound and deep.

After moving to Out-With (Auschitz) Bruno meets a boy "on the other side of the fence", one who is the same age, a lad named Schmuel. At first Bruno is envious of the boy who gets to wear striped pajamas all day and who seems to have lots of companions.

On Bruno's side there are few playmates and he doesn't realize that he has so much compared to Schmuel.
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119 of 131 people found the following review helpful By A Reader on December 28, 2008
Format: Paperback
When I first started reading, I didn't find the simplistic writing style appealing and thought I would be glad to finish the book so I could move on to another more challenging. It wasn't long before I became engrossed in viewing the situation through the eyes and voice of the 9 yr old boy, Bruno. I did not critique what I was reading from the perspective of what a 'real' 9 yr old living in that era should or should not have known about Nazi Germany.

I decided to write this because I was disappointed by the comments of a couple of the other reviewers who were upset that the book did not include historical accuracy. I never thought I was purchasing a history book, and therefore did not expect to receive a history lesson. To me the message of the story is broader than the era it is set in. This is the tale of an unlikely friendship between two 9 yr old boys. That friendship is allowed to grow because of their innocence, and because they do not judge one another by their stations in life. It's a very powerful, moving fable. I loved it for exactly what it is.
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66 of 77 people found the following review helpful By Steven R. McEvoy on May 2, 2008
Format: Paperback
Books about the Holocaust are never easy to read. Some are downright terrifying and some make the reader nauseous. This book however approaches this period in history from a new and interesting angle and tells a tale of what might have happened, and in doing so opens up these stories to a whole new generation of readers. The book was originally marketed as a children's book, and then remarketed as adult fiction because of the content. The author claims it is just a book, and soon it will be a major motion picture due out in the fall of 2008.

This is the story of two boys who lose everything they hold dear, yet the reality of their loss is completely different. Bruno's life is changed when his father is given a new job and they move from their five-story home in Berlin to a new home in the country that is only three stories tall. He has lost his 3 best friends in life, and his home with the banister and the attic window that looks out over all of Berlin. His new bedroom window looks over small huts in a fenced-in area where everyone wears striped pajamas. One day while being rebellious and doing what he should never do, he walks along the fence and meets a boy with whom he shares a birthday. Shmuel and Bruno meet most days and sit on the opposite sides of the fence and talk. As their friendship grows Bruno's youthful innocence is challenged.

The novel is told in the third person narrative, but told from a nine-year- old's perspective. Though the reader knows that the story takes place at Auschwitz, Bruno cannot pronounce it, and misunderstood the name from the beginning. Yet in not naming the place the author leaves the story as a much broader tale.
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40 of 46 people found the following review helpful By J. Cheng on December 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
When I picked up the book...something about the colour of the stripes, something about the hue of the colours looked familiar...in a morbid way...and I wasn't sure if I'd want to read it. What intrigued me as well though, was that within the jacket of the book, it said basically that they could not give us an idea of what the novel was about...

I understand why. There SHOULD NOT be a synopsis on this book because you'd regret reading one. If by the first two sentences in Chapter 4 (they're VERY short chapters) you don't know what the novel is about, I'd be surprised. The story that follows needs no description as you are being dragged deeper gradually, even though wondering all the while, "ermm...and so...?"

This novel is indeed about a nine-year-old boy who walks up to a fence. Boyne writes using a voice with an air of innocence that successfully works to punctuate the harsh reality of the "situation/predicament" which is, essentially, what the story is. The ending will send you rereading the last part of the book again, and perhaps again. I read this book in one sitting. Once you've finished...you will be thinking about this one for a while...
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