what is the theme and how does the authors' cultural influence contribute to the story  The Day They Burned the Books

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a0542959 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The Day They Burned the Books is a beautiful novel. In the story, there is a man (mr. evans) who is abusive to his wife. He loves, however, his library. When he later dies, Mrs. Evans proceeds to burn all of the books in anger at her husband. The narrator (a small black girl obsessed with being white) of the novel manages to grab one of the books from the pile. Jean Rhys, the author of the novel, has a very interesting cultural background. She is Dominican and may have seen a few book burnings over her lifetime. However, the theme of the novels centers in about love and pursuing whatever you truly love. For Mrs. Evans, she truly loves anything opposite her husband. For our small narrator, she loves the idea of being "white" and being able to read, and thus she loves books--especially the books of white people.