What makes The Boy in the Striped Pajamas a worthy book to read?What makes The Boy in the Striped Pajamas a worthy book to read?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that you could probably pull many different answers for this one.  I would say that one reason why the book is a worthy one to read is that it takes one of the most difficult of topics and addresses it from a child's point of view.  The Holocaust is a challenging topic for anyone, child or adult, to grasp.  Its implications are large and wide.  Yet, in bringing out the narrative through Bruno's eyes, it is one whereby the Holocaust can be understood and relayed to younger audiences.  Boyne's work does a great job in relating the Holocaust so that a younger generation can fully understand its horror.  At the same time, I think that the work is a worthy one because it speaks to the idea that friendship and loyalty can be universal elements, ideas that can transcend condition and speak to larger elements.  Bruno's friendship with Shmuel is universal, something that is not effected by the contingent horror both of them face.  I think that this is a worthy lesson to teach to any group of readers, but moreso for young adults, who might be more inclined to break off friendships in the face of contingency.  In this, the book is worthy for it speaks to solidarity and the idea of articulating what can be in the face of what is.

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The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

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