Book Reviews

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

“People observe the colors of a day only at its beginnings and ends, but to me it’s quite clear that a day merges through a multitude of shades and intonations, with each passing moment.
A single hour can consist of thousands of different colors. Waxy yellows, cloud spat blues. Murky darknesses. “

Some books get you hooked that you need to finish reading it as soon as possible while some books are so dragging that they make time stop. And then there are some books which demand to be savor read. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak is one such book. Its written so beautifully that not just the story or the characters but also the feelings seep inside you.

A nine year old girl Liesel is left by mother to live with a German foster family on Himmel Street. It’s here she meets one of the kindest souls ever, learns about friendship, love, and standing up for the right, loss and power of words. It also puts a perspective on the effects of war on common people for whom feeding their family is much more of a worry than power and politics.

There are so many great characters in this book that it is quiet difficult to pick a favorite.

Liesel:- Our main character, the book thief. She is kind, helpful, brave. When she first arrived at Himmel Street she was a scared little girl abandoned by her mother and having constant nightmares about her dead brother. But as the story progresses she learns to fight her demons one day at a time. She also has a penchant for reading and with her papa they both teach each other to read. As the title suggests she does steal books and other things sometimes but you can’t but cheer for her.

Hans Hubermann:- Liesel foster father is a painter and a war veteran. He survived both the world wars actually. He is one the kindest in a believable way characters I have ever seen. He reminded me of my dad and I just fell in love with his character. Whether it is the first time he comforted the scared Liesel by staying up whole night or later on when he gave safe haven to a Jew.

Rudy:- I would say he is my personal favorite if I do have to chose one. He is fun, adorable, helpful,brave, a good friend,a big ball of energy and all he ever wanted was a kiss from his next door neighbor. From now on I will always relate lemons to Rudy lemon colored hair. Even at a young age the way he takes stand for his friends is really commendable.

Max:- The fist fighting Jew. He really puts it in perspective what it is to fight for survival each day. Where even a breath in fresh open air is a luxury. The friendship/brotherly love that develops between him and Liesel as the story progresses is really heart touching. It goes on to show that relationships are more to do with connections of your heart and your empathy towards each other and less with blood.

Rosa Hubermann:- The book describes her as a strong wardrobe shaped  no nonsense woman who loves to call everyone Saukerl and Saumensch. But inside this all hard exterior lies a big soft heart. She just has a different way of showing her love. And i felt she and papa Hubermann were a perfect couple. Like Yin Yang they balanced each other out.

The story is narrated by Death himself which makes it unique.He gives us the perspective from Liesel regarding the events happening around her with little of his own tidbits. It is amazing to see how easy it is for children to differentiate between right and wrong as compared to adults. Like Rudy painting himself black and wanting to be like Jesse Owens or both Liesel and Rudy giving bread to Jews. One of my favorite parts of the book are when Liesel describes the weather to Max and when they build a snowman in the basement. There are so many day to day simple things we take for granted and this story teaches us to value it and enjoy it. This is one of those books that pulls at your heart strings and it would be lie if I say I didn’t cry by the end of it. I think this would certainly end up in one the best books I have ever read criteria. I would definitely recommend everyone should read it.

I would give it a 5/5 👻  👻  👻  👻  👻

They already have a movie based on this book. I watched it after I finished reading it. The movie isn’t as good as the book since they changed some of the events and skipped many. But still it is worth a watch and the actors have done a great job.


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