I've been worrying about how to get this topic right for a long time, but I really believe it's an important thing that needs to be discussed. And with the sequel coming in a few months, the book/film might come to the front of historical conversation again. So here is my review of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas and why it is NOT the story that should be in what seems like every classroom in the country.


John Boyne’s The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas is one of the most popular books to read in schools for English, Drama and History lessons. But how well does it match up to the real history of the Holocaust? And what is the best way to portray more difficult histories in fiction? Spoiler: don’t do it the John Boyne way.

This was a pretty challenging video to make. First, because of the intense subject matter and second, because I wanted to avoid using any vocabulary that would trigger YouTube’s age restriction feature. Usually, I would never self-censor like this, but I really want the video to be accessible to anyone, especially people reading the book at school.

As always, there is so much more to the topic than what I covered, so check out the articles I’ve linked. Some are even open access. We love to see it.