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All the Light We Cannot See
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Anthony Doerr
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr at Abbey's Bookshop,

All the Light We Cannot See

Anthony Doerr


Fourth Estate

Fiction & Literature;
Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)


544 pages

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Winner of the 2015 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction
ABBEY'S BOOKSELLER PICK ----- Marie-Laure loses her sight at the age of six. Her father, the locksmith for the National Museum of Natural History in Paris, helps her navigate her life by constructing intricate models of her surroundings. Werner is an orphan living in Zollverein who has an uncanny mechanical aptitude, but in Nazi Germany is destined for the coalmines that claimed his father’s life.

As they grow, both Marie-Laure and Werner face challenges they can overcome, but the gathering forces of war are going to rip them from their accustomed lives. When Marie-Laure and her father flee Paris for St Malo, they are carrying what may be a precious and myth-shrouded jewel - or a decoy to fool the Nazi treasure plunderers. Werner also finds himself serving in St Malo, his talent for wireless engineering much in demand. He has succumbed to the ideology of his times, but uneasiness is always under the surface of his thoughts. When the Americans bomb St Malo, there may be a chance for redemption…

An intricate novel, yet easily read as the alternating chapters follow first one then the other character. Beautifully plotted and very finely written, this was a moving, haunting story of the effects war has on innocence. Lindy


The epic new novel, set during WW2, from Sunday Times Short Story Prize-winner Anthony Doerr.

Marie-Laure has been blind since the age of six. Her father builds a perfect miniature of their Paris neighbourhood so she can memorise it by touch and navigate her way home. But when the Nazis invade, father and daughter flee with a dangerous secret.

Werner is a German orphan, destined to labour in the same mine that claimed his father's life, until he discovers a knack for engineering. His talent wins him a place at a brutal military academy, but his way out of obscurity is built on suffering. At the same time, far away in a walled city by the sea, an old man discovers new worlds without ever setting foot outside his home. But all around him, impending danger closes in.

Doerr's combination of soaring imagination and meticulous observation is electric. As Europe is engulfed by war and lives collide unpredictably, 'All The Light We Cannot See' is a captivating and devastating elegy for innocence.

By:   Anthony Doerr
Imprint:   Fourth Estate
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 198mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 34mm
Weight:   380g
ISBN:   9780007548699
ISBN 10:   0007548699
Pages:   544
Publication Date:   July 2015
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Author Website:

Anthony Doerr is the author of four books, The Shell Collector, About Grace, Four Seasons in Rome and Memory Wall. Doerr's short fiction has won three O. Henry Prizes and has been anthologized in The Best American Short Stories, The Anchor Book of New American Short Stories, and The Scribner Anthology of Contemporary Fiction. He has won the Rome Prize, and shared the New York Public Library's Young Lions Fiction Award with Jonathan Safran Foer. In 2007 Granta placed Doerr on its list of the 21 Best Young American novelists. Doerr lives in Boise, Idaho, with his wife and two sons.

'Far more than a conventional war story, It's a tightly focused epic ... Doerr paints with a rich palette, using prose that resonates deeply and conveys the ephemera of daily existence along with high drama, sadness and hope ... A bittersweet and moving novel that lingers in the mind' Daily Mail `An epic work about bravery and the power of attachment' Rose Tremain, Observer, Books of the Year `An epic and a masterpiece' Justin Cartwright, Observer `This novel will be a piece of luck for anyone with a long plane journey or beach holiday ahead. It is such a page-turner, entirely absorbing... magnificent' Guardian `Doerr can bring a scene to life in a single paragraph ... Delicate and moving ... the novel takes hold and will not easily let go' The Times `Boy meets girl in Anthony Doerr's hauntingly beautiful new book, but the circumstances are as elegantly circuitous as they can be' The New York Times `I'm not sure I will read a better novel this year ... Enthrallingly told, beautifully written and so emotionally plangent that some passages bring tears' Washington Post `This jewel of a story is put together like a vintage timepiece ... Doerr's writing and imagery are stunning. It's been a while since a novel had me under its spell in this fashion.' Abraham Verghese `A dazzling, epic work of fiction. Anthony Doerr writes beautifully about the mythic and the intimate, about snails on beaches and armies on the move, about fate and love and history and those breathless, unbearable moments when they all come crashing together.' Jess Walter

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