All the Light We Cannot See: A Novel

by Anthony Doerr | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 150110456X Global Overview for this book
Registered by wingmathgirl40wing of Waterloo, Ontario Canada on 1/14/2015
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This book is in a Controlled Release! This book is in a Controlled Release!
16 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by wingmathgirl40wing from Waterloo, Ontario Canada on Wednesday, January 14, 2015
Welcome to BookCrossing! This is a site for catching and releasing books for those who want to share the joy of reading. If you find this book, please leave a journal entry to let previous readers know how and where you found the book. Feel free to do this anonymously if you wish. You are welcome to keep the book, but I encourage you to pass it on and let it continue its journey.

From the back cover:

"Marie Laure lives with her father in Paris within walking distance of the Museum of Natural History where he works as the master of the locks (there are thousands of locks in the museum). When she is six, she goes blind, and her father builds her a model of their neighborhood, every house, every manhole, so she can memorize it with her fingers and navigate the real streets with her feet and cane. When the Germans occupy Paris, father and daughter flee to Saint-Malo on the Brittany coast, where Marie-Laure’s agoraphobic great uncle lives in a tall, narrow house by the sea wall.

In another world in Germany, an orphan boy, Werner, grows up with his younger sister, Jutta, both enchanted by a crude radio Werner finds. He becomes a master at building and fixing radios, a talent that wins him a place at an elite and brutal military academy and, ultimately, makes him a highly specialized tracker of the Resistance. Werner travels through the heart of Hitler Youth to the far-flung outskirts of Russia, and finally into Saint-Malo, where his path converges with Marie-Laure."

Journal Entry 2 by wingmathgirl40wing at Waterloo, Ontario Canada on Tuesday, January 20, 2015
This book is reserved for a bookring. Details are in this forum post:
http://www.bookcrossing.com/forum/20/515837

Please visit the forum post for the updated shipping order.

Journal Entry 3 by sjt105 at Waterloo, Ontario Canada on Thursday, January 22, 2015
A wonderful tale about two lives on different sides of the war lines. It was interesting to see each characters development. I was curious to know how the stories intersected. The follow up at the end was a nice bow tie to the book.

Journal Entry 4 by wingmathgirl40wing at Waterloo, Ontario Canada on Friday, January 30, 2015
This was a beautifully written book that was a pleasure to read. The characters are wonderful and I liked how the different plot lines converge in the end. I'm looking forward to seeing how the book will fare in the 2015 Tournament of Books.

Journal Entry 5 by wingmathgirl40wing at Waterloo, Ontario Canada on Friday, January 30, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (1/30/2015 UTC) at Waterloo, Ontario Canada

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

This book is now on its way to BookBirds!

Journal Entry 6 by BookBirds at -- wild in the usa, -- Wild Released somewhere in USA -- USA on Saturday, February 07, 2015
Thanks so much for sharing a few Tournament books again this year! I just started a book but this one will be next. This will be the fourth 2015 ToB book I've read so far. Looking forward to it....

Journal Entry 7 by BookBirds at -- wild in the usa, -- Wild Released somewhere in USA -- USA on Saturday, March 07, 2015
A book that will probably win the Pulitzer seemed like it was aiming for the Pulitzer (but that begs the question: do writers write with the goal to win awards with every book they write?) To specify: this seemed to hit a lot of plot points to aim for awards, best seller status, or movie deals: orphans, blindness, war, cursed diamonds, cliffhangers, characters that are never too villainous even if they are technically Nazis. Both main characters are trying to get by in World War II: a French girl Marie-Laure who loses her sight at age six and escapes to Saint-Malo, a city on the sea surrounded by ramparts, an almost otherworldly place where all of the basements become flooded when the tide is high enough. The other main character, Werner, a German boy who must go to war, but seems fine with that as long as he doesn't have to go to the mines. He is talented with radios at an early age, which is lucky for him, as he is very uncomfortable and haunted hearing a friend's mother make an anti-Semitic comment. Yes, sometimes Germans had no choice in joining the Nazi party especially at such a young age, but Werner is a hero in this story because he hardly has to do anything wrong. He only operates the radios. Therefore, you can sympathize with Werner just as much as you can with Marie-Laure. It seems like both characters, no matter which side they are on, would need to make riskier moves to survive World War II. Really, it just seems like a pleasant story when Charles Dickens name is mentioned more than Hitler. The mention of Charles Dickens isn't a coincidence - the book remains very Dickensian. Marie-Laure's great-uncle is a tragic figure, losing a brother in World War I, never leaving his house in Saint-Malo until necessary in WWII. It's heartbreaking to realize the trauma of WWI made him an agoraphobic until WWII forced him to leave the house. The writing here is as pleasant as the decisions of the characters, but I had a problem with the story setup: the chapters skip between characters every couple of pages the entire book. For me, that doesn't allow me to delve into the book as well as I might have with longer chapters. It removes me from the story. The chapters are almost written like scenes in a movie (that this book was probably also aiming for). The story shows Werner and Marie-Laure's past while slowly catching up with the attack on Saint-Malo. In my opinion, I might have already read the best World War II fiction, the stunningly written 'The Tin Drum' by Gunter Grass. There is a question if reading really great books makes other books just okay, depending on which order you read them, and if that means opinions on books are constantly shifting. Maybe I would have enjoyed this book more if I hadn't yet read 'The Tin Drum'? I'd like to think that books can just stand on their own, represent themselves, but the best books seem to have a lasting affect on others. With just pleasant, not scrappy enough World War II characters and a distracting structure, this book can't be a favorite of mine.

Thanks so much for sharing mathgirl40! Sadly not my favorite ToB book so far though... not a gem like The Son or Long Division was for me last year. I'll be sending out the book soon!

Journal Entry 8 by BookBirds at -- wild in the usa, -- Wild Released somewhere in USA -- USA on Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (3/25/2015 UTC) at -- wild in the usa, -- Wild Released somewhere in USA -- USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Mailed to Judygreeneyes today. Again, so sorry for taking so long to mail this one. Thanks again for sharing.

Journal Entry 9 by wingjudygreeneyeswing at San Diego, California USA on Wednesday, April 01, 2015
This book has arrived safely in sunny San Diego! Thank you, BookBirds, for sending it forward. I'm really looking forward to reading this.

Journal Entry 10 by wingjudygreeneyeswing at San Diego, California USA on Saturday, May 16, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (5/16/2015 UTC) at San Diego, California USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

This is one of the best stories I have read in a while. Just when you think you have read every story about WWII, another one comes along that is unique and captivating. The characters of Werner and Marie-Laure were special and so completely drawn. I had no trouble imaging Marie-Laure with her father in the museum, or finding her way down the street, or imagining odd things with her great-uncle. I could so easily picture Werner and Jutta as children laying on their stomachs listening to the voice on the radio. The author's prose is beautiful; not a word is wasted, and not a sentence was less than lovely. I wanted the story to end so that I could share it, but I wanted it to keep going so I didn't need to stop reading. Ultimately I believe this is a tale of the horrors of the war and the beauty of what people can be to each other even if only for a short time. Truly a masterpiece.

Thanks everyone, for sharing and forwarding this book.

Now off by mail to debbie4osu. Enjoy!

Journal Entry 11 by debbie4osu at Lewisville, Texas USA on Friday, May 22, 2015
judygreeneyes sent this book to me and I will begin tonight! Hooray!! Thanks to mathgirl40 for starting this bookring

Journal Entry 12 by debbie4osu at Lewisville, Texas USA on Tuesday, June 09, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (6/9/2015 UTC) at Lewisville, Texas USA

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Sending this bookring to readertoo in Sugar Land, TX. Enjoy!

Journal Entry 13 by wingReadertoowing at Sugar Land, Texas USA on Saturday, June 13, 2015
This lovely little gem arrived in the mail today! I can't wait to read it. I will need to read faster so I can get to it soon! The books are definitely starting to pile up.

Journal Entry 14 by wingReadertoowing at Sugar Land, Texas USA on Saturday, July 11, 2015
I just finished reading this book as part of a bookring sponsored by mathgirl40. It was a little hard to follow as it jumped between characters, forward and back in time, etc. every couple of chapters. In spite of that it was a great book and really made you concentrate and think about what you were reading. The ending was a little too vague for me. It just kind of trailed off and faded away without offering a strong closure. I felt it could have been much more powerful if the ending was stronger. All in all it was a great book and I would recommend it. As soon as I hear back from missprisy (who is next in line) with her mailing address I will send it off to her.

Journal Entry 15 by missprisy at Edmond, Oklahoma USA on Wednesday, July 15, 2015
Received today, adding to my TBR pile. Thank you for sharing

Journal Entry 16 by missprisy at Edmond, Oklahoma USA on Thursday, October 01, 2015
I had a hard time keeping up with the story, the short chapters and moving between the different characters was hard to keep up with. The book has a crease in the spine which is causing a couple of the pages to fall out. I've requested JudySlump612's mailing address and hope to get this book off in the mail by the weekend!

Journal Entry 17 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Wednesday, October 07, 2015
Arrived here safely yesterday.

Journal Entry 18 by wingJudySlump612wing at Minneapolis, Minnesota USA on Monday, November 09, 2015
Regrettably, this book has been preceded by so much lavish praise that my expectations were raised too high; almost no actual book could have lived up to them. The switching between characters didn't bother me, but the back-and-forth in time did somewhat. And for some reason, books written in the present tense often set my teeth on edge.

On the other hand, I agree with judygreeneyes about the wonderful descriptive writing. And the idea of Marie-Laure's father crafting the detailed models of buildings so she could learn to find her way around town was original and delightful, as well as a great way of showing his character and their relationship.

The part I can't get out of my mind was the part in Werner's elite school where the students are directed to choose and attack their weakest member. The Nazis had worked to hard to select only the best, including even their silly theories about race - why then start discarding from the group? I get that the teachers wanted to prepare the boys for sudden brutality, but Nazis never seemed to lack undesirables that could have been used for victims. I would have thought the best soldiers were those concentrating only on the enemy in front of them, not wondering what their so-called comrades behind them were planning.

Florence71 has sent me her address, so I expect to get this into the mail today.

Journal Entry 19 by wingJudySlump612wing at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Monday, November 09, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (11/9/2015 UTC) at By mail, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Mailed to florence71, next in ring

Journal Entry 20 by Florence71 at Fontenay-sous-Bois, Ile-de-France France on Monday, November 23, 2015
Just received the book when I came back from my holidays two days ago. It will be read as soon as possible (I have another ring to read before). Thanks !

Journal Entry 21 by Florence71 at Fontenay-sous-Bois, Ile-de-France France on Tuesday, December 08, 2015
I found this novel very well written even if I was upset first with returns in differents period of times. This novel unites all which made of him a great book : hidden jewel, world war II.... Therefore, I didn't like the part with Werner in the german school with the story of the "weakest", it's so unfair, especially no one acts not even Werner when it's Frederick, his best friend, who is the "weakest" !!!. The book will continued his journey to Icila at the end of the week.

Journal Entry 22 by Florence71 at La Chapelle-sur-Erdre, Pays de la Loire France on Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Released 4 yrs ago (12/10/2015 UTC) at La Chapelle-sur-Erdre, Pays de la Loire France

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On his way to Icila, next on the ring ! Enjoy !

Journal Entry 23 by wingIcilawing at Nantes, Pays de la Loire France on Tuesday, December 15, 2015
Thank you florence71 for the book, the Christmas treats and the fantastic postcard "Skiing on the Champs Elysées in about 1930." I love it.

Joyeux Noël et bonnes fêtes à toi aussi !

Journal Entry 24 by wingIcilawing at Nantes, Pays de la Loire France on Wednesday, August 31, 2016
I'm very sorry. I kept the book too long. It was on my bookshelf with many TBR and I forgot that it was a ring. Thanks to Sparkish for reminding me.

Both Museum of Natural History (I recommend the renovated "Galerie de l'évolution" )
and Saint-Malo are familiar to me. Serendipity : I received yesterday a JE for a book released there 2 weeks ago which sailed across the Channel and be released again in Britain by a new member).

Difficult to imagine that the town was destroyed 70 years ago.

I wasn't a bit upset by the moving between characters and times. Like the previous readers I was enchanted by the idea of the model town. I don't know if it can work for a blind person but it's a fantastic toy or a beautiful masterpiece.

I liked the story even although it went as a fairytale. I stop here to avoid a spoiler.

Journal Entry 25 by wingIcilawing at Nantes, Pays de la Loire France on Monday, September 05, 2016

Released 3 yrs ago (9/5/2016 UTC) at Nantes, Pays de la Loire France

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On its way to Greece.

Journal Entry 26 by Merolia at Halandri, Attica Greece on Monday, October 03, 2016
The book is with me now, thank you very much for sending!

Journal Entry 27 by Sparkish at Fleckney, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Tuesday, January 17, 2017
Received safe and sound today thank you for sending and for the lovely card 😊

As is always the way I have had a couple of rings arrive at once, but will get to this as soon as I can!

Journal Entry 28 by Sparkish at Fleckney, Leicestershire United Kingdom on Tuesday, March 21, 2017
I really enjoyed this book and found it a delight to read from beginning to end. The characters developed well and I began to care what happened to them very quickly. This is a book in which we see the best and worst parts of human nature and how our mistakes and experiences inform our present.

I have been fortunate enough to visit St Malo on a couple of occasions and it was really nice to be able visualise some of the places in the story.

This will be on its travels again as soon as I have the address of the next participant.

Journal Entry 29 by Sparkish at by mail, A Bookray -- Controlled Releases on Friday, March 31, 2017

Released 2 yrs ago (3/31/2017 UTC) at by mail, A Bookray -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On it's travels again...Hope you enjoy it :)

Journal Entry 30 by Olivia_Lo at Hualien, Hualien Taiwan on Tuesday, April 11, 2017
The book arrived today. Will get to it around May.

Journal Entry 31 by Olivia_Lo at Hualien, Hualien Taiwan on Thursday, July 06, 2017

Released 2 yrs ago (7/6/2017 UTC) at Hualien, Hualien Taiwan

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

Enjoy the book and don't forget to journal it so that people have an idea of where it is going :)

Journal Entry 32 by BaiLong at Shanghai, Shanghai China on Tuesday, July 11, 2017
The book arrived today, thanks!
I still have a couple of other rings to read too though, but I'll try to get to it as quickly as possible!

Journal Entry 33 by BaiLong at by post, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases on Friday, October 27, 2017

Released 2 yrs ago (10/27/2017 UTC) at by post, A Bookring -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

That was a very strong and moving read.
Thanks for sharing.

And sorry for the delay in sending, but the book is finally on its way!

Journal Entry 34 by SerendipityN at Wuppertal, Nordrhein-Westfalen Germany on Saturday, November 18, 2017
I picked this up at the post office today. For reasons unnown to me, I had to sign for it.

I like the shimmer of the edition. The book is falling apart, though. I'll try and fix it a bit before sending in to the next reader. I have to finish one other ring, too, before I'll start this one.


Journal Entry 35 by SerendipityN at Wuppertal, Nordrhein-Westfalen Germany on Tuesday, January 16, 2018
This was utterly enjoyable! Often sad but two intriguing, intervowen stories. I might even buy my own copy so I can read it once more some time.

Thank you very much for offering this as a bookring! :)

Journal Entry 36 by SerendipityN at Hagen, per Post geschickt -- Controlled Releases on Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Released 2 yrs ago (1/16/2018 UTC) at Hagen, per Post geschickt -- Controlled Releases

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

On its way to Jotka.

Journal Entry 37 by Jotka at Cottbus, Brandenburg Germany on Friday, January 26, 2018
The book is here. It is strange but the postman put it into a neighbours box, something like to mistake Smith for Schermann - both with S...

March 2018
There is something in what BookBirds wrote. I've got the same problem with this book I'd had with The Book Thief: the story is too pretty for a story from the wartime.

Journal Entry 38 by Jotka at Cottbus, Brandenburg Germany on Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Released 1 yr ago (3/14/2018 UTC) at Cottbus, Brandenburg Germany

CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:

I'm sending the book today to susanna-koh.

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