Tuesday, July 26, 2011

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

" 'It's just a small story really, about, among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist fighter, and quite a lot of thievery...'

Narrated by Death, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a young foster girl living outside of Munich in Nazi Germany. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she discovers something she can't resist - books. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor's wife's library, wherever they are to be found.

With the help of her accordian playing foster father, Liesel learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids, as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement."

I loved this book! Using Death as the narrator seems like it would be morbid, but it really wasn't. It made a very interesting perspective. Death is not made to appear as an evil force coming to take souls away, but as a compassionate being who gently carries hurting souls to a better place.

I loved so many of the relationships portrayed in this book: Liesel and her foster father Hans, had such a sweet relationship. I loved how he was there for her every single night when she had nightmares. Liesel and Max, the Jewish man they kept hidden had a wonderful friendship and they taught each other many things. I loved the friendship between Liesel and Rudy, and would've loved to see it last longer.

I admit that I cried at the ending of the book, although the whole book was full of emotion. I highly recommend this book!

Warning: some language and intense scenes (pertaining to the Holocaust). May be too disturbing for some young readers.


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