Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Reader

by Bernard Schlink
Translated by Carol Brown Janeway
Read by Campbell Scott
218 pages

The Reader is short but complex.  This novel, set in post-WWII Germany, deals with the complex relationship between Michael and Hannah.  Michael is fifteen, and Hannah is in her late thirties when the novel begins.  Generational differences, Hannah's Nazi involvement, and Hannah's secret complicate their relationship.

This is one of those novels where I am afraid to say too much.  This is a thought-provoking novel that deals with a lot of complicated topics.  Obviously, inappropriate sexual relationships is one topic this book explores.  This book also deals with German's first post-war generation coming to terms with the crimes of their parents.  It also deals with Hannah's secret, which is also a complex societal problem.

I listened to the audio version of this book.  Campbell Scott is a great narrator with a smooth voice that is easy to listen to.  However, I think I would have appreciated this book more in print.  This is one of those books that you really need to think through as you are reading, and I just don't feel that audio allows you to do this as well.

1 comment:

  1. I have the same thoughts! This book is very disturbing, but I'm very glad I read it. It definitely made me think.