If you're searching for a good book to read, look no further than Anthony Doerr's All the Light We Cannot See, which just took home this year's coveted Pulitzer Prize for fiction. The 2015 Pulitzer winners were announced yesterday, and we understand why this one took home the ultimate honor. Since the novel first hit bookshelves last May, it has captured the imaginations of readers worldwide thanks to Doerr's deftly written, engrossing story, and spent 33 consecutive weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.
Set in France during World War II, the novel follows two protagonists, a blind French girl and a German boy, who are both trying to survive during this difficult time. Their journeys begin in France and Germany, respectively, but eventually their lives collide in a spectacular way. For those thinking of picking up the novel, InStyle’s Senior Editor Sharon Clott Kanter highly recommends it:
I found so much joy in reading All the Light We Cannot See. At first, I went into it thinking it was going to be another World War II novel. It was anything but. Anthony Doerr's prose is beautiful, yet not overcomplicated. His writing is illustrative and descriptive, as well as deep and meaningful. I fell so in love with his characters: Marie Laure, the blind French girl who's so determined and perceptive. You want nothing but the best for her. And then Werner Pfenning, the intelligent, young German soldier who's a victim of circumstances and decisions, who's trying to figure out right and wrong.
The story isn't linear, either: The novel jumps back and forth through time and each page is so layered with metaphors and analogies. Ultimately, it's a story about humans and what it means to survive in unbearable circumstances and still keep your soul intact … or not. I didn't want it to end, which is incredible because it's already over 500 pages long. I might have to re-read it, just to pick up things I didn't see the first time. And aren't those the best kinds of books—the ones you want to dig into over and over again?
If you're still not convinced, our May cover star Reese Witherspoon is also a fan.
All the Light We Cannot See ($27; amazon.com) is available in hardcover and for digital download now.