All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See

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All the Light We Cannot See Ten (12 August 1944): Birds of America Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Marie-Laure shows Werner the radio room: there are phonographs and records, including the records that Werner loved so dearly as a child. Werner and Marie-Laure discuss Jules Verne, and the fate of Captain Nemo. In one part of the house, Werner finds a copy of Birds of America, a book that Frederick adored.
Doerr suggests that if there is a way for unlike human beings to connect with one another,, it will always be incomplete, but art and literature are the best vehicles possible for such connection. Art is the best way to reach across the boundaries of time, age, and politics: it can say the unspeakable, and tap into the larger complexity of reality. The touching exchange between Werner and Marie-Laure in this chapter proves as much.
Themes
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
There are many hours to go before the ceasefire at noon, Werner tells Marie-Laure. Marie-Laure and Werner decide to sleep in the cellar until this time. They lie down as they hear the sounds of bombs above them. Marie-Laure turns and asks Werner if he knows why the man snuck into her house—Werner suggests that it was because of the radio.
Marie-Laure asks Werner this question as a test, to see if he knows anything at all about the Sea of Flames—and it’s clear that he has no idea it even exists. This makes the two characters’ brief connection more pure, unsullied by greed or desire for any personal gain. It’s as if they have known each other for a long time, and can comfortably take a nap together to recover from their many trials.
Themes
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon