Home > Historical Fiction, Intermediate Fiction, Realism, Senior Fiction, War, Young Adult > Stay Where you are & then Leave by John Boyne

Stay Where you are & then Leave by John Boyne

August 30, 2013

Stay where you areStay Where you are & Then leave by John Boyne. Pub. Random House, 2013.

This book is just brilliant! At the end you will say wow and you will not be alone. It is a story of World War 1 and the little people who grew up, lived, worked and suffered the war. John Boyne has told their story.

Alfie is five on the day war broke out and his father proudly signed on. “It will be over by Christmas so better get in while the going is good”. A common belief but which Christmas would it be?

The War drags on, we don’t see the trenches in this novel, there is no need, it’s about Alfie growing up. He is a studious boy but only goes to school on two days, Monday for History and Thursdays for reading. Good Lad! He realises the serious situation his mother is in with making ends meet and uses a shoeshine box borrowed from an interned friend, and polishes shoes on King’s Cross Station.

His father has disappeared in the War, or so his mother says, but while shining shoes he learns something about his father that is to precipitate an amazing course of events. You will have to read the book if you want to know more. Believe me I am doing you a favour.

This book is for  a wide range of ages from primary to senior secondary school. It is simply told and the plot is brilliantly linked. Nothing is irrelevent. A work of genius.

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