All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See

Madame Manec is a brave, resourceful, and kindly maid and cook for Etienne LeBlanc. When Daniel and Marie-Laure LeBlanc arrive in Saint-Malo, Madame Manec dotes on Marie-Laure, and their friendship becomes an important influence on Marie-Laure’s development in the coming years. Manec comforts Marie-Laure during times of crisis, and ultimately inspires Marie-Laure to become a French resistance fighter, delivering loaves of bread stuffed with secret messages that undermine the Germans’ power. Even after Manec succumbs to illness and dies, her bravery and integrity continue to inspire Marie-Laure.

Madame Manec Quotes in All the Light We Cannot See

The All the Light We Cannot See quotes below are all either spoken by Madame Manec or refer to Madame Manec. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Fourth Estate edition of All the Light We Cannot See published in 2015.
Five (January 1941): The Frog Cooks Quotes

“Do you know what happens, Etienne,” says Madame Manec from the other side of the kitchen, “when you drop a frog in a pot of boiling water?”
“You will tell us, I am sure.”
“It jumps out. But do you know what happens when you put the frog in a pot of cool water and then slowly bring it to a boil? You know what happens then?”
Marie-Laure waits. The potatoes steam.
Madame Manec says, “The frog cooks."

Related Characters: Great-Uncle Etienne LeBlanc (speaker), Madame Manec (speaker), Marie-Laure LeBlanc
Page Number: 285
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Unlock explanations and citation info for this and every other All the Light We Cannot See quote.

Plus so much more...

Get LitCharts A+
Already a LitCharts A+ member? Sign in!
Get the entire All the Light LitChart as a printable PDF.
All the light we cannot see.pdf.medium

Madame Manec Character Timeline in All the Light We Cannot See

The timeline below shows where the character Madame Manec appears in All the Light We Cannot See. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Three (June 1940): Madame Manec
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
As the chapter begins, Marie-Laure’s father is introducing her to an old woman named Madame Manec. Manec seems overjoyed to meet Marie-Laure, and she lets them both inside. (full context)
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Inside, Madame Manec feeds Marie-Laure delicious food—eggs and peaches. Marie-Laure is so famished that she eats everything she’s... (full context)
Three (June 1940): Occupier
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Marie-Laure wakes up after a night of resting in Saint-Malo. Madame Manec greets her. Marie-Laure asks her if the entire house belongs to her great-uncle, and Manec... (full context)
Three (June 1940): The Boches
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Marie-Laure is trying to settle into her life in Saint-Malo. Madame Manec reports surprising news: the German soldiers stationed in their town are good for the French... (full context)
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Marie-Laure eats and sleeps well in her home in Saint-Malo. Madame Manec cooks delicious meals for her, always reminding her that the people in Paris are starving. (full context)
Three (June 1940): Time of the Ostriches
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...on behalf of the Nazis. People look the other way at Nazi cruelty, and Madame Manec mutters that this is the “time of the ostriches”—everyone’s head is buried in the sand.... (full context)
Five (January 1941): He Is Not Coming Back
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
...has been gone from Saint-Malo for many, many days. Marie-Laure is devastated by this. Madame Manec tries to cheer Marie-Laure up by telling her that the museum will be searching for... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Plage du Môle
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...father has been gone from her life for 29 days. One day, Marie-Laure hears Madame Manec and Etienne arguing—Manec says, “I cannot stand by one moment longer.” Manec instructs Marie-Laure to... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Letter #6: To Marie-Laure, from Daniel
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
...he’s being served “wonderful food,” and insists that Marie-Laure be polite to Etienne and Madame Manec. He concludes by saying, “I am right beside you.” (full context)
Five (January 1941): The Rounds
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Marie-Laure and Madame Manec continue to walk through the streets together, until Marie-Laure feels fairly comfortable doing so on... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Proposal
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
One day in Saint-Malo, Marie-Laure is sitting in her home while Madame Manec and her friends criticize the Nazi tyranny. The Nazis in Saint-Malo tax everything excessively—for instance,... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Old Ladies’ Resistance Club
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
...food. They intentionally send government packages to the wrong people, and delay train schedules. Madame Manec instructs her friend Madame Blanchard to write “Free France now” on money, ensuring that the... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Grotto
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
In the summer, Marie-Laure spends time with Madame Manec and Crazy Harold Bazin. Bazin says that he wants to show Marie-Laure something. Accompanied by... (full context)
Five (January 1941): The Blade and the Whelk
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
In a hotel in the city of Saint-Malo, Madame Manec and Marie-Laure sit with a man named René. He claims that he’s taken notice of... (full context)
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Manec and Marie-Laure go back to their home. Manec suggests that she and Marie-Laure need pseudonyms... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Alive Before You Die
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
As Marie-Laure listens carefully from downstairs, Madame Manec goes to talk to Etienne on the fifth floor of the house. Manec tells Etienne... (full context)
Five (January 1941): The Disappearance of Harold Bazin
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Marie-Laure, Madame Manec, and some resistance members are walking through the streets, planning to meet up with Harold... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Visitors
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...day at Etienne’s house, there is a knock at the door. Marie-Laure, Etienne, and Madame Manec all think they’re going to be arrested. But in fact, it is only a group... (full context)
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
The officers ask Marie-Laure, Manec, and Etienne more questions. They ask to see the letters that Daniel sent to Marie-Laure.... (full context)
Five (January 1941): The Frog Cooks
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
In the weeks following the police officers’ visit, Madame Manec is unusually formal and polite with Etienne and Marie-Laure, as if she’s hiding something. Sometimes,... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Pneumonia
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
In the spring in Saint-Malo, Madame Manec gets sick. Marie-Laure takes care of her, and so does Etienne. Etienne is a tender... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Heaven
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Madame Manec slowly recovers from her illness. In June, she and Marie-Laure walk, very slowly, around the... (full context)
Five (January 1941): Relapse
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
In June 1942, Marie-Laure wakes up to find that Madame Manec is not in the kitchen as usual. She goes to Manec’s room, and is surprised... (full context)
Seven (August 1942): The Wardrobe
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
After the death of Madame Manec, Etienne remains in his room at all times, and doesn’t let Marie-Laure see him. Madame... (full context)
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
Weeks after Madame Manec’s funeral, Etienne gets an electric saw from his cellar, and uses it to make modifications... (full context)
Seven (August 1942): One Ordinary Loaf
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...that the information has been spread to Paris, and to England. He remembers what Madame Manec said about the frog in the pot of water, and tells Marie-Laure that he’s not... (full context)
Seven (August 1942): Grotto
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Marie-Laure misses Madame Manec. In honor of Manec, she continues visiting the bakery to pick up bread for Etienne.... (full context)
Seven (August 1942): The Messages
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...her father means by this. Sometimes, Marie-Laure thinks she can see the ghost of Madame Manec. (full context)
Ten (12 August 1944): Fort National
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...remember his past. He thinks about his house, about his nephew Daniel, and about Madame Manec. He thinks of Marie-Laure and her love for 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. It occurs... (full context)
Ten (12 August 1944): Are You There?
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
...person ask, in French, “Are you there?” The mysterious person might as well be Madame Manec, Marie-Laure’s father, or Etienne—he symbolizes everyone who’s ever abandoned her. The man whispers, in clumsy... (full context)
Eleven (1945): 177. Paris
World War II, the Nazis, and the French Resistance Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
...thinks about what’s become of her father—it’s possible that he’s dead. She remembers what Madame Manec told her: “You must never stop believing.” Marie-Laure tells Etienne that she would like to... (full context)
Thirteen (2014)
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Fate, Duty, and Free Will Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
...it’s possible that souls could walk the streets as well: the souls of Etienne, Madame Manec, Werner Pfennig, and even Marie-Laure’s father. Perhaps their souls are walking the streets, but the... (full context)