All the Light We Cannot See is easily one of the best books I've read in 2015. I was mesmerized by it from the first moment. I lived and breathed the book for days. If I wasn't reading it, I was thinking about it. If I was reading something else, I was wishing I was reading this book instead. The last book I remember feeling this way about was The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. Both books have been highly decorated with awards both Pulitzer Prize and Andrew Carnegie Medal winners, and National Book Award finalists.
Meet the author, Anthony Doerr, in this 3 minute video where he explains how he came up with his story line. Like the plot which travels a circuitous route to the conclusion, Doerr's muses for writing the book came from many different directions.
In addition to being the winner of the biggest book prizes we offer in this country, All the Light We Cannot See won the 2015 Audie Award for best audiobook recording of a work of fiction. That is where I come in. I listened to this audiobook expertly narrated by Zach Appleman by S & S Audio. I have to tell you how the whole listening experience was magical. Zach handled the French and German expertly. I got lost in this story listening to his silky voice. Here is a three minute sample for your listening enjoyment.
Now I would be remiss if I didn't mention All the Light We Cannot See is one of those meandering books that wanders around between countries and locales. It also travels backward and forward in time. I know this is a problem for some people. In fact, two gals in my book club said they didn't really care for the book and I think this is the reason they cited.
As I was looking at Anthony Doerr's website I stumbled upon his speaking engagements page and, lo and behold. he is coming to Puyallup, Washington (where I live) and will be delivering the Jim Taylor Memorial Lecture. I taught with Jim Taylor when I was at Rogers High School before his death. Now I will go back to my book club and suggest we attend the event together. (October 23rd.) Psyched!
I leave you with a quote about Doerr and this wonderful book by JR Moehringer The Tender Bar author:
Anthony Doerr sees the world as a scientist, but feels it as a poet. He knows about everything—radios, diamonds, mollusks, birds, flowers, locks, guns—but he also writes a line so beautiful, creates an image or scene so haunting, it makes you think forever differently about the big things—love, fear, cruelty, kindness, the countless facets of the human heart.Moehringer goes on to say that All the Light We Cannot See is the type of book one urges all her friends to read. Guess what? I urge you to read this one. It is a not-to-be-missed book.
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.
I wasn't sure if I had any "big books" on my summer TBR pile then noted that All the Light We Cannot See weighed in at 513 pages so I quickly added my name to the Big Book Summer Challenge over at Book by Book.
In addition, with the competition of this book, I am one step closer to finishing my own reading challenge for the summer...to read 30 books. Almost there!
30 books Summer Reading Challenge
26 / 30 books. 87% done!