Customer Review

Reviewed in the United States 🇺🇸 on May 13, 2021
Zusak, Markus,, and Trudy White. The Book Thief. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 2007. Print
608 pages, US $6.99 on Amazon (on 05/13/2021).

***Spoilers will be included***
Liesel, the perfect example of showing that one can overcome anything if they try really hard for it. In the beginning, she struggled with reading since she didn’t know how at all. That was until her adopted father Hans taught her how. She was made fun of for being a slower reader than her classmates. She just has a way with words, which encouraged her to steal books even if cost her own life. Her family helped hide a Jew in their basement during the Hitler Regime, which is the equivalence of having a death wish. At a young age, she had to keep dark secrets from others just to keep her family alive. She learned the seriousness of war, how people won’t submit to the fears of Hitler so easily.
This story shows the importance of education, how words make a person so strong. A part in the book mentions how she’s stealing the words that Hitler used to make people support him. Like I mentioned before, she didn’t know how to read. She became more powerful once she learned how to. I think that’s why it was so important for her father to teach her how to. This book made you fall in love with the characters. Rudy, the one who loved Jesse Owens and dreamed to be him. He was super athletic and was pretty smart in class. Which was why it wasn’t a surprised when they wanted him to join their new program for making the best race. Max, the Jew who is so selfish and felt like he had to be in some way. It was sad when they had to go to someone else’s basement for the bombings while he had to stay alone at Liesel’s basement. He even gave Liesel a book, with small pictures throughout the story. People around her really made Liesel’s life more bearable. Like how she became friend’s with the Mayor’s wife. The massive library in their house gave Liesel hope. That she will be surrounded with books her whole life.
What’s different about this book is that it’s narrated by death himself. It was clear that he had some biases. It was harder for him to collect people’s souls compared to others. He was always attached the book thief and the people that surrounded her. I had mixed emotions about death spoiling the ending, like how he told the readers that Rudy died. However, it did create the suspense about how it ended up happening. In the beginning, it was hard to read because I didn’t understand it. It was talking about colors and random things such as bombings. It was a lot to handle but it eventually became more clear. The writing style was definitely unique and something I really appreciate from the author. In other books that relate to WWII, they mostly mention people that support Hitler either out of admiration or fear. This book was clearly different. Yeah they did their salutes for the leader, but they just did it when they had to. They didn’t care about him being leader. They went against him but they didn’t make it so obvious like those who join the revolution.
Her father deserved a lot better, he did escape death twice so I guess a third time was impossible. I never expected that Liesel would be the only only one alive from her street. Her love for words was clearly so strong that it helped her stay alive through the bombings. Max is eventually liberated from the concentration camp that he was in and visited Liesel right away. I think that’s where everything felt rushed from me. I wanted to know more about Max’s story. How Liesel cooped with everyone’s death. Especially the death from her lover. Then again, it’s up to our interpretation for everything. I highly recommend this book to any historical fiction lover like myself. I read this book in two days, it was too quick. I spent many days rereading many scenes and noticing small details that I missed before. Liesel and everyone on Himmel Street, including the Mayor’s wife, their lives will continue to live in my soul.
A 5/5 book indeed.
4 people found this helpful
Report abuse Permalink