For all intents and purposes, Jerzy Kosinski was on the fast track for fame under fire with the publication of his third novel, The Painted Bird. “Of all the remarkable fiction that emerged from World War II, nothing stands higher than Jerzy Kosinski’s The Painted Bird. A magnificent work of art, and a. The Painted Bird Poster. A young Jewish boy somewhere in Eastern Europe Writers: Jerzy Kosinski (novel), Václav Marhoul (adaptation) | 1 more credit».

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The boy, a living, breathing human being, is not recognized as one koisnski their own by confused and uneducated peasants. Polish Educational Foundation in North America. They loved to scare and hurt kids. They certainly became fact for our anti-hero who bifd came to believe the very same things.

Rather than correcting his audience, Mr Kosinski rode the wave of popularity and did nothing to change these misconceptions. As such, the antagonism between the individual and culture that is the center of The Painted Bird is from the start inherent to the whole of the world through which the boy passes. It is a re-interpretation of the Book of Job that is remarkably congruent with the thrust of Kosinski’s narrative. Want to Read saving….

Jerzy Kosinski, The Painted Bird | John Pistelli

Harvey Keitel, Catherine Deneuve. I really do not care if this is the case, as it did not work, and I read the entire book wondering why the writing felt overly simple.

It’s a shame because he writes very well and at times offers subtle and memorable insights into paibted dark side pxinted human nature. The main character is totally broken.

Inhe became an American citizen. It is an incredibly difficult and important book, and the fact of the controversy surrounding it and the author only heightens its effect. The reader, Fred Berman, did his homework – his accent and inflection and manner of speaking is spot-on Jerzy Kosinski.

In the 18th century literature tended to romanticise rural communities. Poland has jery the worst record of all. I was not sure whether the pleasure depended only on the knowledge of the power one had, or on its use.


The boy travels from village to village in Eastern Europe. At my age, I am well aware of the inequities of life. Justice, in particular, cannot be left to social institutions, but must be seen to personally and proportionately to the offences involved. Book ratings by Goodreads. Yet maybe this was the author’s intention. Written with deep sincerity and sensitivity. Each beating and humiliating act that he endures is a violent peck against his outward appearance.

If you were a Jew in Poland, you had an enemy on the other side of virtually every wall. I felt like a squashed caterpillar oozing in the dust, a creature that could not harm anyone yet aroused loathing and disgust. Once a book is published, the equivalent of releasing the work into the wild, an author must be open to personal interpretation but this book does not really allow for that in my opinion.

It’s like the Marquis de Sade meets Monty Python. Retrieved 22 June In either case, the superstitious villagers despise and fear him for his supposed evil powers.

The Painted Bird

He becomes a street kid, a child of the night, a friend to low lifes and misfits. This is an apt cover for Jerzy Kosinski’s fictiona The cover of the Mass Market Paperback edition from the s of The Painted Bird features a small section of Hieronymus Bosch hell-landscape — dressed in sickly green and wearing a white hood, a creature with a man’s body and head of a long-beaked bird walks on crutches carrying a large wicker basket on its back, and in the basket a small black devil with spiky fingers touches the shoulder of a wary young boy as he whispers into the boy’s ear.

It was not until the last few pages that I realized the author meant to do this, maybe an attempt to allow readers to better connect with the main character. We’re featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. This book is about hate and sadism, about evil born out of poverty and ignorance.


In the end, this novel is a failure. Another blurb, this one on the back of my old paperback edition, where it is jarringly discordant with the grotesque wraparound cover illustration, compares Kosinski to Anne Frank. In an afterword to the second edition, he describes his reaction to living in Switzerland in When contemplating the ideological possibilities of an individualism untethered from morality, it is a relief that such a vision produces in this novel only a version of aestheticism, only the voice to tell the tale, rather than anything more severe.

The flock, confused by the stranger’s appearance, would begin to attack the painted bird and eventually kill it, not recognizing it as one of their own. Maybe this reflects more about me than the book, but I find it impossible to believe that the main character could encounter so much active and persistent evil.

Retrieved 9 September Looking for beautiful books? The reader is stultified. I don’t think it’s worth specifying these truly disgusting and abhorrent events here in my review, mostly because I’m still sick to my stomach just thinking about them. It sort of feels like rubbernecking. I want to become lost in my books, not Miss Analytical. There was one scene that nearly did me in but it was not about the main character.

He is taken in, cared for, and politically indoctrinated by soldiers of the Red Army. To what purpos Human depravity in the extreme – this book in a nutshell. The yellow chalices of lilies rustled, koinski a frightened frog belched from a ditch.

He sees what Power is meant to be: It felt like the whole universe decided to defecate on that poor kid! What is delivered is man at his worst told in such a way as to make the reader cringe. Through the considerable power of his fiction, he is making a bleak koosinski about human nature. And he is comfortable.