WARNING: May contain spoilers.
Sorry this didn’t come yesterday, but I went to a pub quiz and had one too many wines – whoops.
So, what I’m about to say is probably going to be pretty controversial, but I have to say it anyway – sorry guys. I wasn’t that bothered by this book. I completely understand why it’s such an important part of history and I also know that it’s not a story in the sense that it wasn’t constructed for people’s entertainment, but I struggled to stay invested.
I felt myself becoming interested in Anne as a person and learning about her as a person, but I could tell that she was bored in there (I mean, naturally. Who wouldn’t be?), and it was starting to rub off on me a little. Not to mention I felt equally as irritated by Mrs. Van Daan as Anne was, I couldn’t imagine being trapped in such a confined space with such a busy body.
Having said that, I did feel completely invested in their desperate attempt at survival and reading Anne’s diary – the diary of barely a teenage girl having to hide for her life – opened my eyes in a similar way that The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas did. I felt incredibly sad for these people being hunted for something they couldn’t change about themselves, for something that was part of them.
If you want to experience history through the eyes of somebody so innocent to really see how the war effected those involved, then definitely give it a read. Just don’t expect a structured plot or large events to occur when you least expect it – this is definitely not a story in the traditional sense. This is factual work that holds importance and makes you realise the trauma of the war for all those not on the front line – a story that’s often lost.
Next up: And When Did You Last See Your Father, by Blake Morrison.