The truths behind this book are tragic, the meaning horrific, the story line gripping. Throughout the whole book you know what is going to happen, you wait for it, expecting it but still dreading the conclusion, it isn't a surprise but it is terrible.
Bruno is extremely easy to sympathise with because of his childish character but I also tended to get annoyed with him because he was so unaware of what was going on. Even when he meets Shmuel and sees the horrible way he is treated and how he lives Bruno still doesn't realise what is going on and neither does Shmuel. The innocence and complete unawareness of the two children is what creates the tension and emotions of the book and the injustice of war the concentration camp is shown through their confusion and mistakes.
When I read this I was gripped by how real John Boyne makes his book. Every moment of betrayal and cruelty is brought home by the innocence of the two children and their misunderstanding. The ultimate trust they have in each other is amazing and John Boyne captures Bruno's unwavering trust in his father, a man so horrible and yet of whom he is proud. This book is well worth reading and I sincerely recommend the film when you finish.
The film follows the book almost perfectly, nothing is changed, because nothing needs to be, John Boyne's book is so complete that to change anything new would be to loose some of the innocence or the emotion that he has managed to create. The film does add to the readers understanding and show you clues to what is coming but more or less it is exactly the same as the book.