Guilt, regret and complicity mark the novel All the pieces broken (Salamandra), by the Irish writer John Boyne (1971), in which he returns to the universe of the famous The boy in the striped pajamas, which he published in 2006.
The author confesses that he planned to continue this story that has moved 11 million readers in 40 languages when he was old, so that it would be his last novel; but the pandemic It changed his mind and he now shares it 17 years later.
The first work tells the story of Bruno, whose father is the commandant of a Nazi concentration camp; There he befriends a Jewish boy who is imprisoned and, playing, they both die in the gas chamber. Now, Boyne tells the life of her older sister, Gretel, who at more than 90 years old reflects on that past that embarrasses her, although she was not responsible.
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She realizes that she is not responsible for what her father did, but she is responsible for her own actions; because she had the option to reveal truths, once the camps were liberated, and she decided not to, she decided to put herself before the families, before comforting them, and she realizes that there is only one thing she can do; “That is revealed in the novel,” says the narrator who participated yesterday in the eighth Hay Festival Querétaro.
* QUALIFICATION: All the pieces broken
* AUTHOR: john boyne
* EDITORIAL: Salamandra, Mexico, 2023; 365 pp.
“When I finished this book I knew I wanted to revisit the story through the sister, Gretel. So, for many years I kept the manuscript in a drawer; He talked about her life, her future, how she had spent the years and the life he could have had.
“The boy in the striped pajamas, is told from the perspective of a nine-year-old boy in the Holocaust, and the sequel from the perspective of a 93-year-old woman, who is at the end of her life and who is understanding all the consequences of the events she experienced and their part in it,” he says.
The author of 21 books clarifies that it was not difficult for him to return to the original story. “It has been years of talking about the boy in the striped pajamas continuously. So, it was very exciting for me to revisit characters that I knew very well and add new elements, in this case from Gretel’s life.
He points out that it is difficult to explain his interest in war. “There are themes like fear, bravery, suffering, death; but my interest in the Holocaust began at the age of 15 and has stayed with me ever since. It’s strange because, being Irish, there’s no direct connection to that fact, but I think having an outside perspective is also good, because it’s fresh and different.”
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