The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

26 03 2010

Título: THE BOY IN THE STRIPED PYJAMAS

Autor: JOHN  BOYNE

Obra adaptada: NO

Nivel: AVANZADO

x

Review:  The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas was written by John Boyne, who is an Irish novelist whose novels are published in over 40 languages. This famous novel  is a  historical fiction book which was first published in 2006 and has sold more than 5 million copies worldwide.  In 2008 it was made into a film, directed by Mark Herman.  

The story takes place at the Auschwitz extermination and concentration camp, where Bruno, a son of a Nazi officer who is promoted to  commandant of the camp, develops a  friendship with Shmuel,  a Jewish boy who lives on the other side of the wire fence and who is dressed in a prison uniform (or the “striped pyjamas of the title), as everybody in the camp. 

Every day  the children meet at the same spot and talk. Little by little, Bruno discovers the cruelties inflicted on the Jewish people and one day he decides to climb under the fence and explore Shmuel’s world. Finally, he will inevitably become subsumed by the terrible process of the final solution, the Holocaust. But, in spite of all difficulties Bruno and Shmuel are able to stay friends, to keep a relationship of pure innocence:

 “… despite the chaos that followed, Bruno found that he was still holding Shmuel’s hand in his own and nothing in the world would have persuaded him to let go…”

From my point of view, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is a touching novel. The book is a page turner and a quick read, easy to follow and highly recommended for everybody, specially for young people, in order to instil the memory of the tragedy in future generations and to prevent future acts of genocide.

Valoración: 5/5

Eugenio Corpas  2ºNI



La scomparsa di Majorana

18 03 2010

 

TITULO: La scomparsa di Majorana 

AUTOR: Leonardo Sciascia 

EDITORIAL: Einaudi

NIVEL: Avanzado

xx

È l’Italia della dittatura, tutti gli scientifici investigano la bomba atomica. Ettore Majorana è un genio, ha un talento innato, e un giorno scompare. Ci sono due lettere che ne annunciano la scomparsa e tutti crederanno che si è suicidato. Ma lui ha preferito scomparire piuttosto che far parte di quello che sta per ottenere la scienza.

 Il rapporto fra scienza ed etica è al centro di questa storia.   È  un romanzo giallo con indagini e prove che non vanno bene. Non mi è piaciuto tanto prechè è difficile da capire. 

VALORACIÓN: 2/5

Isabel Llanes Díez 1ºNA



Saving Private Ryan

15 03 2010

Título: Saving Private Ryan

Autor: Max Allan Collins

Editorial: Penguin

Obra adaptada: SI

Nivel: Intermedio

Review: This book tells the story of James Ryan, a veteran soldier who is visiting Normandy with his family, a place where he was fighting when he was a soldier 54 years before.

When D-Day finished on June 6, all of his brothers who were also  in the army, had fallen in the battle. Then the army chief of staff, General Marshall, ordered to find the fourth brother and get him out of France and send him home. This part of the story tells us the hard work of a small unit of the army whose mission is to find private Ryan. Finally, after having lost two comrades in the fight they find him, but he refuses to abandon his duty and then they all decide to fight together. 
 
This book was easy to understand and entertaining if you like historical events. If you are a fan or enthusiastic about military history,  you will find a very good story in this book.

Valoración: 5/5

Vicente Suárez  2ºNI



Neu in der Bibliothek: kleiner Mann, was nun?

20 01 2010

Título: Kleiner Mann, was nun?

Autor: Hans Fallada

Editorial: Aufbau Taschenbuch

Obra adaptada: No

Nivel: a partir de B1+

„Als Lämmchen und der Verkäufer Johannes Pinneberg heiraten, zeichnen sich böse Zeiten ab: die Weltwirtschaftskrise. Dennoch glauben die beiden an ihr Glück und an ihre Liebe. Das Glück will sich nicht einstellen, statt dessen gibt es Kummer und Sorgen. Als Pinneberg sich schließlich in das Millionenheer der Arbeitslosen einreihen muss, ist es Lämmchen, die das Leben ihres verzweifelten kleinen Mannes in ihre Hände nimmt.“

  Dieser Roman schildert das Alltagsleben in Deutschland um 1930 aus der Perspektive der „kleinen Leute“, mit ihren Ängsten, Hoffnungen, Tugenden, Schwächen und Stärken: das Ende der Weimarer Republik, Nationalsozialismus, Wirtschaftskrise, Arbeit und Arbeitslosigkeit. Ziel des Romans ist nicht Kritik zu üben, vielmehr wird die Reaktion der Menschen auf die zwischenmenschlichen Konflikte, die aufgrund einer so ernsthaften Lage entstehen, gezeigt; die sozialen Probleme werden sozusagen „privatisiert“

(Metzler)



Ivanhoe

8 05 2009

Título: Ivanhoe

Autor: Sir Walter Scott

Obra adaptada: NO

Nivel: Avanzado

Reseña:

Richard the Lionheart has gone to the Crusades for some years. Since his departure Prince John, his brother, has been trying to make profit of his absence to control the country and to be proclaimed as King of England.
Both of them, Richard and John, represent the power of Norman people, who have conquered England after having beaten the Anglo-Saxon, the former inhabitants of the island.
On the other hand, a great deal of Saxon people have declared themselves  outlaws and live in the forests of Central England while only a few of them remain in their homes trying to unite their people against The Normans. Between these last ones is ‘Cedric the Saxon’, Ivanhoe’s father, who has disinherited his son because he has accompanied Richard to the Crusades.
The return of Richard and Ivanhoe is going to put an end to Prince John’s power and to the wishes of Cedric the Saxon too. A new era is going to begin between Norman and Saxon people and instead of fighting against each other they finally decide to live together.

Walter Scott wrote this famous novel in 1819 and like most of the Romantic writers from all over Europe, he tried to idealise the origin of their countries, finding the essence of their nations during the Middle Age.

The spirit of Chivalry, the love between Ivanhoe and Lady Rowena, the generosity of  Rebbeca, the determination of Cedric the Saxon and the ambition of Prince John helped the author to describe a difficult time where the differences between Norman and Saxon people were going to disappear with the help of Richard and Ivanhoe.

The book is extremely readable and in spite of having been written 200 years ago it continues to be sold an read, not only all over the United Kingdom but in the rest of the world and its plot has served to make a great number of films.

 Valoración: 5/5

 Ojeda  2ºNA



New Arrivals: The Reader

2 04 2009

Título: The Reader

Autor: Bernhard Schlink

Obra adaptada: NO

The Reader is a brief tale about sex, love, reading, and shame in postwar Germany. Michael Berg is 15 when he begins a long, obsessive affair with Hanna, an enigmatic older woman. He never learns very much about her, and when she disappears one day, he expects never to see her again. But, to his horror, he does. Hanna is a defendant in a trial related to Germany’s Nazi past, and it soon becomes clear that she is guilty of an unspeakable crime. As Michael follows the trial, he struggles with an overwhelming question: What should his generation do with its knowledge of the Holocaust? “We should not believe we can comprehend the incomprehensible, we may not compare the incomparable…. Should we only fall silent in revulsion, shame, and guilt? To what purpose?” ( Amazon.com Review)



The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

13 05 2008

Título: The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

Autor: John Boyne

Editorial: Definitions

Obra Adaptada: NO

Reseña: I don’t generally read best-sellers. However, it has been because of the opportunity of doing it in English that I decided to choose The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne.
I began the book with the mistaken idea that it was a book written for adults and from this point of view, I was disappointed.
The plot is very soft and the style reminds me too much of Le Petit Nicolas by René Goscinny.
In short, I think it is a book written for not too old schoolchildren, perhaps a good complement to explain  an absolutely dark historical period to them.

Valoración: 2/5 

Santiago García-Monge



Girl With A Pearl Earring

2 05 2008

girl.jpgTítulo: Girl with a Pearl Earring

Autor: Tracy Chevalier

Editorial: HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

Obra adaptada: NO

Reseña: Girl with a Pearl Earring is a 1990 beautiful novel written by Tracy Chevalier. It takes place in Delft, Holland and was inspired in its essence by Vermeer’s painting ‘Girl with a Pearl Earring’, which is the photo on the cover of the book.
It recreates with elegant style the cincumstances under which the painting was created. It was adapted into a 2003 film with the same name. I recommend you the film, in my opinion is excellent.
If you want, the novel will touch your soul and you will have a magical experience. I should say that is not only a novel. There is so much mystery in each word that you have to discover.
I was really grateful for discovering this painter with the book because finally you discover that painting suggests so many stories and most of them have not been told yet.

Valoración: 4/5

Ana Bermúdez Gavito



The Pillars of the Earth

11 03 2008

pillars.jpg

Título: The Pillars of the Earth

Autor: Ken Follett

Editorial: Pan Books Ltd

Obra Adaptada: NO

Reseña: The Pillars of the Earth is a historical novel by Ken Follett. This bestseller deals with the building of a cathedral in a town in England during the 12th century.
I did not know what to expect when I started reading this novel; now I believe it is by far Follett’s best story. The characters are very real and the depiction of medieval England is wonderful. One of the most fascinating elements is the way Follett explains how the styles of cathedrals developed and how cathedrals were constructed in the Middle Ages. Besides this scenario, deep feelings fulfil the ingredients to prepare this fantastic book: determination, jealousy, pride, bravery and personal ambitions and are the main themes moving characters.
If you start reading The Pillars of the Earth be prepared not to do anything else until you turn the last page.

Valoración: 5/5

Manuel Menéndez González