The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak (1 March — 5 March)

-sniffle- I really wasn’t sure about this book. I’d heard good things, but when I picked it up and started reading I was a bit put off by Death’s narrative style. Yes, Death is the narrator. Of a Holocaust book. Oh, joy. And Death spouts off about colors for a chapter, and it’s symbolic, sort of, but it didn’t make a lot of sense while reading it. Death also cuts in all the time with weird, bolded pronouncements like

* * * HERE IS A SMALL FACT * * *
You are going to die

That’s on the first page. I was a bit concerned. But then, as I read some more, I got used to the intrusions and even started to appreciate them. That fact seems almost appropriate to this book.

Anyway, I said the book was about the Holocaust, but it’s not, really. It’s about a young German girl who is sent to live with a foster family during Hitler’s reign, and how she grows up amid the tumult. She makes friends, she gets into fights, she steals some books (obviously), she helps hide a Jew, and she generally becomes a fine young woman. Of course, bad things happen all over the place. To paraphrase Death, an admission: I cried for the last 50 pages. It’s not a happy book, and it took a bit to really pull me in, but it is a very very good book and you should read it.

Rating: 9/10
(Support Your Local Library Challenge, Orbis Terrarum Challenge: Australia)

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6 thoughts on “The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak (1 March — 5 March)

  1. tuulenhaiven says:

    One of my favorite books! I’m glad you liked it. I haven’t read it since it first came out – I think it’s time to hear Death’s thoughts again. 🙂

  2. writemeg says:

    I’m right smack in the middle of reading this one, and I couldn’t resist clicking on your review just now! So glad you enjoyed it — looks like I have great stuff in here to look forward to. I knew I was going to be pretty weepy, but I better make sure I have that box of tissues really close by 😦

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