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Many Covers Monday: The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas

by - July 28, 2014

Today we're looking at the many different covers of The Boy In The Striped Pyjamas (or Pajamas) and choosing a winner! These won't be the complete collection of covers, just as many as I can find or the most interesting from around the world. Because this is such a popular book, there's a lot of covers!

Berlin 1942
When Bruno returns home from school one day, he discovers that his belongings are being packed in crates. His father has received a promotion and the family must move from their home to a new house far far away, where there is no one to play with and nothing to do. A tall fence running alongside stretches as far as the eye can see and cuts him off from the strange people he can see in the distance.
But Bruno longs to be an explorer and decides that there must be more to this desolate new place than meets the eye. While exploring his new environment, he meets another boy whose life and circumstances are very different to his own, and their meeting results in a friendship that has devastating consequences.

Left: UK
I really like this cover, and it's the one I own. I know exactly what the book is about just by looking at the cover and the type over tape look is great for the title. I think I would remove the review, just because I hate reviews on books.

Right: US
This is what I would call the classic cover, the cover I see the most and was released first, I think. It's a great cover, with the background being the same stripes as the prisoners would have worn. Love the font too!

Left: Movie Tie-In
I actually think that for a movie cover, this is great! Even for a book cover it's a great cover and tells us exactly what the story is about. I haven't seen the movie yet but I will soon.

Right: AU?
 I was unsure about the country but the review says 'The Australian' so. This one looks like my cover (UK, Top Left), and I like this one a lot too but not as much. There's just a lot of blank space around the title and author name.

Left: Italian
More stripes this time but for some reason with the placement, I keep expecting it to be a book of baby names. 

Right: Irish, I guess
This is a pretty cool cover but it doesn't really appeal to me, I can't explain why. I wonder if that's a real jacket that someone wore? 

Left: Chinese Simplified
With free recipes! Just kidding. In all my time doing Many Covers Monday, I've never seen a stranger or less fitting cover that this one. What's with the creepy little gingerbread men?

Right: Hungarian
Spoilers here, highlight to reveal: There's a bit of foreshadowing here, which is quite clever. Otherwise it's a pretty bland cover.

Left: Czech
Why is he balancing an apple on his head.

Right: Romanian
This is quite a haunting cover, I keep being drawn to it. Nice!

Left: Italian
I would like to see this book as I think it's illustrated, going by the little message on the cover.

Right: Thai
Great to see a Thai cover, I don't think I've had one before! I'm not sure which kid this one is supposed to be, as the boy in pajamas has a shaved head.

Left: Swedish
This fence looks oddly modern to me. But otherwise it's a great cover and tells you a lot about the book.

Right: Lithuanian
This reminds me of a film I once saw, Rabbit Proof Fence (amazing, I highly recommend). I thought there was a forest of some kind mentioned in the book but I don't see that here.

 Left: UK
I really like this art, the boy across the fence looks like he's almost faded away, which is pretty creepy!

Right: Polish
This looks really strangely photoshopped. I don't remember them doing anything but sitting and talking in the book (something that leads up to it's devastating conclusion), so adding a chess set and a football seems odd.


This was a really, really difficult decision but in the end I decided on my cover, as I feel it lets us know what's in the book while still being mysterious!

Loved a different cover? Let me know in the comments!

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  1. Anonymous4:55 pm BST

    The scene of the Polish cover, is actually from the movie. They play chess through the fence! I must see that I feel that most of these covers reveal the outcome to much. When I read The Boy in the Striped Pajamas it was in magazine form, so with a totally random stockphoto cover. When I read it, the impact was even greater because it took some time for me to even figure out that the boy was talking about a concentration camp.. Therefore I like the second cover with just the blue stripes the best :).

    1. Ah, thank you! I haven't seen the movie yet so I didn't know that. It's still a very odd looking cover for me. Magazine form? I haven't heard of that term before.

  2. Yes, I've got to agree with you - the winning cover looks the best and has the best 'feel' as well. I've watched the movie and I love both the book and the movie. Other then that the Hungarian one. Possibly.

    1. I'm looking forward to seeing the movie... at the same time as dreading it!

  3. Such a variety. I lean towards the simplicity of the US one though.

    1. Yes, I don't usually post this many covers but there were so many unusual covers for this book I just grabbed as many as possible!

  4. I just watched the movie, recognised the scene from the Polish cover instantly! I don't know how well that ties in with the book though. These are great covers, I like the UK and the US best :)


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