All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr is about Marie-Laure, a blind French girl, and Werner, a young German soldier, in the besieged town of Saint-Malo in 1944 as the Allies are liberating it. In alternating narratives, we learn how these two arrive in the town and how their lives connect.
A novel set in France during World War II will always spark my interest, but add an original story and absolutely beautiful writing and you have a winner in my eyes. We all know the big picture bad guys and good guys of the war, but this novel creates a greyer level of players on both sides. Morality is not always clear in life and death situations — some act for the greater good of everyone, others do only what is best for them; and who is to say what is right or wrong without being there?
This is not a short book (530 pages in hardcover) but it is one that is worth the time invested.