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The Reader
The Reader
Author: Bernhard Schlink
Hailed for its coiled eroticism and the moral claims it makes upon the reader, this mesmerizing novel is a story of love and secrets, horror and compassion, unfolding against the haunted landscape of postwar Germany. — When he falls ill on his way home from school, fifteen-year-old Michael Berg is rescued by Hanna, a woman twice his age. In time ...  more
ISBN-13: 9780307473462
ISBN-10: 0307473465
Publication Date: 12/30/2008
Pages: 224
Rating:
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
 145

3.3 stars, based on 145 ratings
Publisher: Vintage
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review
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Top Member Book Reviews

  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 11 more book reviews
6 member(s) found this review helpful.
Well written, and thus, translated, story told from the narrator's memories. Many ties to classical literature and philosophy. I was at once enjoying the unraveling mystery and trying to make sense of ideas of right & wrong.
  • Currently 1.5/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 20 more book reviews
5 member(s) found this review helpful.
From the very beginning of this book, I could tell that I wasn't going to like it. For me, there was no hooking point, that would draw me into the book, and keep my nose there until it was done. It was a simple book that should have only taken me days to read, but I found myself forcing myself to keep reading, just because I never like to leave a book I've started reading unfinished. I guess it could have been a good story, but the way in which it was written just wasn't right for me. The author asked too many questions, that were left unanswered. And I was left sitting there wondering what the answers could have been. I really wouldn't have minded a little more detail in the story.
  • Currently 0.5/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 32 more book reviews
4 member(s) found this review helpful.
This book was very odd. I only finished it because it was short and I wanted to know how it ended. The author kept asking questions over and over, it got so annoying I wanted to say "I dont know!! You are supposed to tell me that!!" If you cut the questions out, the book would have been 2/3 shorter.

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  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 487 more book reviews
One day fifteen year old Michael is on his way home from school when he becomes violently ill. A 36 year old woman named Hanna spots his distress, cleans him up and walks him home. Michael lands in bed with hepatitis for several weeks and when he recovers his mom asks him to personally thank Hannah for her kindness. And boy does she ever . . .

The two become bed-mates for a time and she enjoys listening to Michael read to her. Michael fancies himself a little in love with Hanna despite her odd, aloof behavior. He also struggles with keeping the affair a secret and behaving like a normal teenager. The affair comes to an end when Hanna spots Michael swimming with friends and doesn't acknowledge her. Hanna then disappears.

Years later Michael is a law student sitting in a courtroom and learns that Hanna is on trial for murder and that she spent time as a concentration camp guard for the Nazi's. As the trial continues Michael realizes he knows a secret that can significantly reduce her sentence. But it's a secret that Hanna has kept to herself entire life and he's unsure if he should speak out when she refuses to defend herself.

This is a story with some heavy moral dilemma's but it's ultimately a story of regret of wasted lives. It's a quick read but not one, I think, I will easily forget.
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 70 more book reviews
Surprisingly a very good book. I had seen the film before hand so I knew the outcome but even still the author had me turning the pages to finish. It was that good!
  • Currently 0/5 Stars.
reviewed The Reader on + 36 more book reviews
"When young Michael Berg falls ill on his way home fro school, he is rescued by Hanna, a woman twice his age. In time she becomes his lover, entralling him with her passion, but puzzling him with her odd silences. Then she disappears. Michael next sees Hanna when she is on trial for a hideous crime, refusing to defend herself. As he watches, he begins to realize that Hanna may be guarding a secret she considers more shamful than murder."

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