All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light We Cannot See Nine (May 1944): Edge of the World Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
While touring the army, Werner receives a letter from Jutta. Volkheimer reads the letter to Werner while they ride in a truck. Jutta tells Werner that Herr Siedler, now a powerful mining official, sends Werner congratulations for his success as a soldier. She adds that Frau Elena has had a toothache lately, though she’s getting better.
Werner’s heartbroken thoughts of Jutta immediately shift into a letter from Jutta herself. The constant presence of Jutta and Frau Elena in Werner’s mind are once again crucial to him, helping him keep his conscience and his sanity.
Themes
Interconnectedness and Separation Theme Icon
Family Theme Icon
Science and “Ways of Seeing” Theme Icon
One day, Werner and the troops are sent to see an important colonel (whom we recognize as the same man who’s been tasked with hunting down terrorists in Saint-Malo). The colonel explains that there is a terrorist group that sends music over the radio. Werner and his peers are going to France to investigate further. Volkheimer nods and says, “It won’t take long.”
Despite the conversation we just heard between Volkheimer and Werner (under the Hotel of Bees), here we see that any doubts he might have don’t make Volkheimer less capable as a commander—he always carries out his duties to the Nazis efficiently and quickly. This was common, however—after World War II, many “loyal” Nazis confessed that they’d always had doubts about what they were doing, even though they kept following orders.
Themes
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