The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (film)
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (ISBN 0-385-60940-X) (The Boy in the Striped Pajamas in USA) is a 2006 novel by Irish novelist John Boyne. Boyne is the author of 6 novels. Unlike the months of planning Boyne had for his other books, he said that he wrote the entire first draft of Boy in two and a half days, barely sleeping until he got to the end. To date the novel has sold more than 3 million copies around the world. In 2007, it was the best selling book of the year in Spain.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Plot
This book is a story about a nine year old boy trying to understand what is happening around him in (Out-With) Auschwitz during World War II.
The nine year-old boy Bruno, is the son of commander general of a Nazi concentration camp. He has a strong headed sister, Gretel (the Hopeless Case!). They live in a five story mansion, but are one day suddenly moved to a place called (Auschwitz). Bruno, angered and confused by his father's decision to move to Auschwitz, and desperate to go home, spends his time in his room, with no friends to play with. He misses their old five-story mansion, as with such a small space, there isn't any room for exploration (a hobby of Bruno's) like there was in his old home, misses sliding down the banister in their old house, and misses his friends.
From his bedroom window, Bruno spots a fence behind which he sees many people in 'striped pajamas'. These are the Jews, and they are in a concentration camp. One day his parents come to an agreement that both Bruno and Gretel (his sister) need a tutor for their education so they hire Herr Liszt. To Bruno, Herr Liszt is the most boring teacher one could ever have - because he teaches science (such as geography and history), instead of reading and arts, which Bruno prefers. So, in boredom and confusion he wonders what is going on at Auschwitz and why people are always dressed in striped pajamas there. On the afternoon he goes exploring. What he finds is a boy, a Jewish boy called Shmuel, a name Bruno has never heard of before but apparently is quite common in the concentration camp. He soon becomes Bruno's friend and Bruno goes to see him every afternoon to talk. Bruno is told by his sister that the people in the striped pyjamas on the other side of the fence are Jews and that he and his family are "the opposite". Shortly after this, Bruno and Gretel get a bad case of lice and Bruno has to have his head shaved. This makes him look a lot more like his friend Shmuel and he finds himself thinking that it is as if "they weren't all that different, really."
The story ends with Bruno about to leave Auschwitz and return to his previous home with his mother and sister. As a final adventure, he agrees to dress in a set of striped pyjamas and climb under a loose wire in the fence to help Shmuel find his father, who has gone missing in the camp. They are unable to find him, and just as it starts to rain and Bruno decides he would like to go home, the people in the area of the camp which the boys are in must go on a 'march'. Neither boy knows where this march will lead. However, they are crowded into a gas chamber, and the author leaves the story with Bruno pondering, yet unafraid, in the dark.
The book ends with the effects of Bruno's disappearance on his family and his father discovering his clothes outside the fence, and realising the implications of this.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Film
A Miramax film adaptation of the novel was shot in Budapest between April and June 2007. The film will be released September 12, 2008 in Ireland and the UK, on September 17, 2008 in China and Japan, on October 3, 2008 in Finland and on November 7, 2008 in USA.
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas Awards
The novel has won several literary awards including:
Two Irish Book Awards
The Bisto Book of the Year Award (Ireland)
The Que Leer Award (Spain)
The novel has been shortlisted for many literary awards including:
In Ireland, shortlisted for 3 Irish Book Awards: the Novel of the Year, the People's Choice Book of the Year, and the Children's Book of the Year. It won 2 awards.
In England, shortlisted for The British Book Awards 2007
In the UK, shortlisted for the British Children's Book of the Year, Ottakar's Children's Book Prize, the Berkshire Book Award, and the Sheffield Children's Book Prize.
In the UK, it was longlisted for the 2006 Carnegie Medal.
In Italy, shortlisted for the Paolo Ungari Literary Award.
In the USA, shortlisted for the Border's Original Voices Award.
In 2007, Miramax started shooting a film adaptation in Budapest.