REVIEW : All The Light We Cannot See


TITLE: All The Light We Cannot See
AUTHOR: Anthony Doerr
GENRES: Historical Fiction, Fiction, Adult
PAGES: 543
FORMAT: Finnish paperback
PUBLISHED: May 6th 2014

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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.

Doerr’s gorgeous combination of soaring imagination with observation is electric. Deftly interweaving the lives of Marie-Laure and Werner, Doerr illuminates the ways, against all odds, people try to be good to one another. Ten years in the writing, All the Light We Cannot See is his most ambitious and dazzling work.


Honestly? I wasn’t even sure if I should publish this review at all. Almost everyone praises this book but I did find some people whom agree with me. But remember that this is only my opinion, you shouldn’t be offended by it. Don’t nail me to the wall, please.

The story indeed was beautiful in it’s own way. Some parts were really pulling me in and I enjoyed reading. But mostly? It wasn’t really catching my interest and it took me a long time to finish this. Many times I put the whole book away and read other books in the mean time and wasn’t really looking forward to pick this up again.

I got confused with all the hopping back and forth in different time periods. And then there were all those different POVs. All the POVs were easy to figure out since Marie-Laure and Werner weren’t together and they and others were mentioned by name.
But all the different time periods were truly getting me confused and I found myself going backwards a lot, just to get a hold of the time I’m currently in or when I was trying to figure out when something actually was happening.

I didn’t feel any connection to any of the characters. Not even with Werner and Marie-Laure, the MCs, I think. Their paths cross only once during this book, they spent together one day, even less. But still there’s mentioned romance. Like what romance? I don’t know if that’s absolutely supposed to mean Werner and Marie-Laure but I didn’t come across with romance. It doesn’t matter that there were no romance but I’m just trying to figure out that why there’s mentioned romance when there’s no such thing? I might just be too stupid to read this book.

So, yeah. I’m a bit ashamed and disappointed that I didn’t like this book and I’m going to rate it with 2,5 stars. But it just wasn’t a book for me. It was emotional, heart wrenching and beautiful, just too slow moving and boring for me.



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3 thoughts on “REVIEW : All The Light We Cannot See

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