Reader reviews and comments on The Book Thief, plus links to write your own review.

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The Book Thief

by Markus Zusak

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
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  • First Published:
    Mar 2006, 560 pages
    Paperback:
    Sep 2007, 576 pages

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Power Reviewer Elizabeth (07/13/10)

Heartwrenching
What a great book even with all the heartache and pain of the characters....the characters are unforgettable....I didn't want the book to end......the idea of death being narrator was quite unique.

I can't believe this is a YA book, though....I think it is pretty intense.
Susan (07/08/10)

Heartwrenching...
This is an incredibly well crafted book - one that I purchased for my personal collection & which I have now read a total of 3 times - it speaks to the heart, draws the reader into the darkest of times & allows one to experience the depth of human emotion in so many ways. Beautifully written, from a perspective I've not seen before, with death as its narrator, one feels as "he" is totally real & almost a feeling being, using colors to describe souls.

Least we forget history, may we realize the power of words...be sure to read the story with the novel, "The Word Shaker," for it is starkly true - Hitler used words to capture the trust of his people & led them like sheep to the slaughter in a bloody parade...(another lesson to be heeded), it is a deeply moving novel & in my opinion a must read for young adults as well as adults. It is one of the most powerful novels I've had the pleasure to read.
Mindy (04/23/10)

The Book Thief
This book is simply amazing. It combines humor with a serious situation, and puts the ideals in such a way that authors rarely dare to publish. I recommend it for everyone.
Ashley (01/24/10)

A Book of Emotions
The Book Thief made me laugh, cry and smile. Liesel grabs your hand and doesn't let go until the book finishes. Death describes every scene with a touch of love. I think this book was one of the best I've ever read and I would recommend it to anyone.
Susan (12/27/09)

Beautiful
I absolutely loved this book. How soon we forget that just 65 -70 years ago people lived with such horror. This book gave us hope for those who survived Hitlers relentless stupidity. I didn't want this book to end and it made me cry like no other book has ever done. I recommend this book to adults and of course young adults. Markus Zusak is my new favorite writer. Great work.
Ulrike (12/21/09)

frustrated
While I agree with the many critics who praise the elegant phrasing and often stunning metaphors, I am intensely annoyed by headlines that appear in the middle of a chapter (or at the beginning for that matter). I find this an unnecessary and distracting gimmick.
Worse, the sentence structure reads as if the author's first language were German. Is this intentional? And if so, why? This device, if it is a device, frustrates this reader.
Dr. Allen (12/07/09)

A Book to "Steal" Your Heart
Words are powerful objects which when harnessed, can give their master immense power and can change the world for the better...or for the worse. This is the overall theme of Markus Zusak's novel, The Book Thief. The novel follows a young woman as she struggles with living in Nazi Germany under Adolf Hitler. Liesel Meminger, loses every single member of her family to Death (who, in fact happens to be the narrator of the story), and becomes a foster child. She is adopted by Hans and Rosa Hubermann, and comes to live in Molching, a small town outside of the German city of Munich. Liesel has difficulty coping with the difficulties of life, love, and loss until she learns to read. She then develops a love for books, and will even steal to get them (hence, the title "The Book Thief"). The novel follows Liesel's footsteps throughout her life of excitement, love, fear, and death, and also includes interesting commentaries by Death along the way. Death too, has his own stories to tell and in many ways Zusak succeeds in an everlasting literary struggle by being able to "fill in the blanks" of the story and therefore make the reader omniscient and all-knowing. Overall, Death and Zusak together help tell the unforgettably heart-wrenching tale of just one German girl during the height of World War II as she learns just how powerful words can be.
Ashton Loyd (12/04/09)

The Book Theif Rev.
The Book Thief tells the story of Leisel Meminger, a young German girl. At the age of eleven, she is sent to live with the Hubermanns. Hans, the kind-hearted accordion player/painter, and Rosa, the wardrobe-shaped housewife, become her family. She spends her days in school, attending Hitler Youth meetings, and playing soccer in the street with her best friend, Rudy Steiner, the boy with the lemon-colored hair. She also steals books. The books themselves and the act of stealing them bring her life in the midst of a world full of death. The words give her hope, and she both loves them and hates them for it. Death is the narrator of The Book Thief. He pauses in the midst of his ever-increasing duties to observe Leisel Meminger, and then to tell her story and the story of the war.

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