The Painted Bird

Kosinski, Jerzy

(Book - 1995)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Painted Bird
Originally published in 1965, The Painted Bird established Jerzy Kosinski as a major literary figure. Kosinski's story follows a dark-haired, olive-skinned boy, abandoned by his parents during World War II, as he wanders alone from one village to another, sometimes hounded and tortured, only rarely sheltered and cared for. Through the juxtaposition of adolescence and the most brutal of adult experiences, Kosinski sums up a Bosch-like world of harrowing excess where senseless violence and untempered hatred are the norm. Through sparse prose and vivid imagery, Kosinski's novel is a story of mythic proportion, even more relevant to today's society than it was upon its original publication.
Publisher: New York :, Grove Press ;, [Emeryville, Calif.] :, Distributed by Publishers Group West,, 1995
Edition: Second edition
ISBN: 080213422X
Branch Call Number: FICTION Kos
Characteristics: xxvi, 234 pages ; 21 cm


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List - CRRL Book Match: Perfume by: CRRL_JohnGaines Feb 28, 2014

A young boy, abandoned by his parents during World War II, wanders alone from one village to another in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe

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Jan 25, 2013
  • Sean Lapointe rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A compelling story of a young boy who roams from village to village in WWII. Despite witnessing disturbing and depraved acts at every turn, many of which were directed towards him, he never gives up and tries to find meaning behind it all.

Jul 18, 2012
  • jkrejci rated this: 2.5 stars out of 5.

This controversial book by a controversial author is an unrelenting and very disturbing chronicle of ignorance and cruelty. I have a high tolerance for depressing and disturbing material, but this exceeded my personal threshold, in part because the stream of violence and barbarity was so constant that it lent an air of unreality to the book, and eventually left the reader numb. This may be a classic, but I think it is overhyped.

Oct 26, 2010
  • melbl8tr rated this: 1.5 stars out of 5.

A very disturbing, violent story.


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