Please wait while we process your payment
If you don't see it, please check your spam folder. Sometimes it can end up there.
Don’t have an account?
Create Your Account
Sign up for your FREE 7-day trial
Already have an account? Log in
Choose Your Plan
$4.99/month + tax
$24.99/year + tax
Save over 50% with a SparkNotes PLUS Annual Plan!
for a group?
Get Annual Plans at a discount when you buy 2 or more!
$18.74 /subscription + tax
Subtotal $37.48 + tax
on 2-49 accounts
on 50-99 accounts
Want 100 or more?
for a customized plan.
You'll be billed after your free trial ends.
7-Day Free Trial
Renews December 9, 2023
December 2, 2023
Discounts (applied to next billing)
This is not a valid promo code.
(one code per order)
Annual Plan - Group Discount
SparkNotes Plus subscription is $4.99/month or $24.99/year as selected above. The free trial period is the first 7 days of your subscription. TO CANCEL YOUR SUBSCRIPTION AND AVOID BEING CHARGED, YOU MUST CANCEL BEFORE THE END OF THE FREE TRIAL PERIOD. You may cancel your subscription on your Subscription and Billing page or contact Customer Support at firstname.lastname@example.org. Your subscription will continue automatically once the free trial period is over. Free trial is available to new customers only.
For the next 7 days, you'll have access to awesome PLUS stuff like AP English test prep, No Fear Shakespeare translations and audio, a note-taking tool, personalized dashboard, & much more!
You’ve successfully purchased a group discount. Your group members can use the joining link below to redeem their group membership. You'll also receive an email with the link.
Members will be prompted to log in or create an account to redeem their group membership.
Thanks for creating a SparkNotes account! Continue to start your free trial.
Your PLUS subscription has expired
See discount terms and conditions.
Symbols are objects, characters, figures, or colors used to represent abstract ideas or concepts.
In the novel, peaches symbolize security and safety. When Marie-Laure and her father finally arrive in Saint-Malo after a long and perilous journey, they are hungry and exhausted. Madame Manec offers them canned peaches to eat, which symbolizes that they have finally arrived somewhere where they can feel safe and fed. Years later, after Werner shoots von Rumpel and Marie-Laure can finally leave the attic, Werner and Marie-Laure eat canned peaches together. The reoccurrence of the peaches shows that they have achieved at least temporary security, as Marie-Laure and her father did. Peaches are also a key symbol because they are a fairly humble household item, which become an incredible luxury to people who have been deprived of everything. This symbolism shows how war and tragedy transform mundane pleasures into wonderful luxuries. The peaches also carry important symbolism because they are canned and preserved, revealing how precious things can be preserved and protected even during dangerous times.
The Sea of Flames diamond symbolizes the human desire for power and control. According to the legend, the prince who seized the diamond became obsessed with the power and status it conferred on him. Even after rumors of the curse began to circulate, people still wanted the diamond because they wanted to feel invincible and were willing to risk the associated suffering for incredible power. The curse associated with the diamond is an important part of the symbolism because it implies that power always comes with consequences and corruption. Von Rumpel’s desire to obtain the diamond shows his desire for power and control—particularly power over his own mortality. When Werner and Marie-Laure both decide not to take the diamond with them when they flee Saint-Malo, they reveal that they have different values and stand in contrast to von Rumpel. They have seen the consequences for people who choose to pursue power, and this goal does not interest them. So, Marie-Laure abandons a priceless diamond in favor of a peaceful life.
The Birds of America book symbolizes Werner’s kindness and tender affection for Frederick. When Werner is a boy and goes to visit Frederick’s home in Berlin, Frederick shows him a beautiful copy of the book, which is his prized possession. Like Werner, Frederick is kind-hearted and loves learning. Werner wishes it were possible for Frederick to pursue his ambition of studying birds rather than being forced to train to be a soldier. After Frederick is beaten and suffers brain damage, Werner is tormented by guilt that he was not able to protect his friend. When he enters Marie-Laure’s house in Saint-Malo, Werner finds a copy of the same book, which symbolizes how the same kindness that drew him to Frederick is also what compels him to help Marie-Laure. Even with his own life at risk, Werner sets a page from the book aside to send to Frederick. Although this page only arrives decades later, it shows that Werner was always kind at heart and never stopped wanting to help people. Though he failed to protect Frederick, he succeeds later in life at protecting Marie-Laure.