The Story: This is a time before any world wars. While political tension rises in Russia-occupied Poland, the truth of human nature is revealed in village boys Patryk and Jurek. While the roots of World War I are built upon and the flames of war lick at the borders of the country, the village children are caught in their own war – for the buttons off of uniforms. At first, it is a mere game, Patryk humoring the vain and puffed up Jurek. But soon it has turned into a vicious race to become known as the king, a race that could endanger not only the boys’ collections but their entire future.
My Thoughts: This book reminded me of Lord of the Flies. With its eerie psychological underpinnings and characters that are very adult, AVI weaves a tale that is worth reading and having discussions about. I highly recommend this for readers who are of a more mature intellectual level and who can really think about what this book is telling us.
Parental Advisories: This book is fairly clean, though it does hold hefty depictions of violence and showcase the brutal nature of mankind. This book has kids killing adults, stripping buttons off of the jackets of dead men, and even kids threatening death on each other. That having been said, this is still a very good read. The brutality is part of the point of this book. It is worth reading and discussing.