All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See


Anthony Doerr

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All the Light We Cannot See: 8. The Beams Summary & Analysis

Under the hotel, Werner tries to fix his radio. As he works, Volkheimer mentions that his great-grandfather was a sawyer (person who saws timber) for the navy. Above them, Werner and Volkheimer hear the sounds of more bombs. Volkheimer admits that as a younger man, he was desperate to leave the army—Werner admits that he was, too.
The more Volkheimer and Werner talk, the more they realize they have in common. Outside the environment of rigid discipline, danger, and violence, they finally have the chance to become actual friends. Clearly Werner wasn’t alone in feeling trapped by his duty to the army.
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