September 1919: Twenty-year-old Tristan Sadler takes a train from London to Norwich to deliver a clutch of letters to Marian Bancroft. Tristan fought alongside Marian’s brother Will during the Great War. They trained together. They fought together.
But in 1917, Will laid down his guns on the battlefield and declared himself a conscientious objector, an act which has brought shame and dishonour on the Bancroft family.
The letters, however, are not the real reason for Tristan’s visit. He holds a secret deep within him. One that he is desperate to unburden himself of to Marian, if he can only find the courage. Whatever happens, this meeting will change his life – forever.
About the Author
John Boyne was born in Ireland in 1971 and is the author of seven novels. The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas won two Irish Book Awards and the Penguin Orange Readers’ Group Prize. It was shortlisted for the British Book Award and was made into a Miramax feature film. His novels are published in over 40 languages. He lives in Dublin.
A master storyteller manages to convey a complete world with characters that come to life and live in your memory long after the last page is turned.
Someone once said that it is the task of literature to provide answers to the question “What it is to be a human being”. This is one of the most compelling takes on that age-old theme I have had the pleasure to read.