BOOK REVIEW: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

The Book ThiefThe 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. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she 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 before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.(Goodreads Summary)

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It’s his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry.

If even death’s heart could bleed for the characters of this book, then what chance did my heart have? None. Zip. Nada. Zippo. It was so easy to fall in love, to laugh, to cry, and to cheer for the handful of tough but loving characters that made half of The Book Thief’s größe.

The other half? Well, that was occupied by Death. And I don’t think I’ve ever been told a story by a more poetic and ironic narrator than Death.

It kills me sometimes, how people die.

Well done, Markus Zusak for making Death a narrator for a book about life, which is what, I believe, this book truly is about: humans and how we live.

Any other book and I would have complained about the pace. Oh, the story built up so slowly. It surely took its time. But it didn’t matter because Markus Zusak’s writing made the book wonderfully easy to read.

A night that watches, a sky that drips, a group of clouds that come over the mountains like great white beasts – he describes everything with so much creativity, it makes you feel like you could actually see the colors that Death sees through his eyes.

Sometimes I fall in love with imagination, style, plot, characters, or words. But there are times when I get lucky and I get to fall in love with a gem that has all these, and The Book Thief is definitely something to be treasured.

View all my reviews


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