Monday, January 26, 2009

The Book Thief

They should have a warning for books that make you cry so that you have ample time to prepare box loads of tissues. This is an excellent book and I cried buckets.
In the first few chapters, the narrator explains that this is a ‘...story of one of those perpetual survivors-an expert at being left behind. It’s a small story really, about, amongst other things. A girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist- fighter, and quite a lot of thievery’.
‘The perpetual survivor’ is Liesel Meminger; the central character of the book, growing up in a time of great difficulty during World War II. The Book Thief is an extra-ordinary narrative from the Angel of Death about the life of Liesel, The Book Thief; her coming of age, her inner struggles, her loss and her survival.
The story begins with Liesel travelling to Molching at the age of nine, where Death meets her for the first time while taking the life of her younger brother. From here, we follow through her survival during difficult times through her love of books and the people surrounding her.
This book is full of memorable characters like Hans & Rosa Hubermann, Ilsa Hermann, Max Vandenburg and Rudy Steiner who shape and enhance Liesel’s life. Even Death’s character is memorable offering occasionally a hint of emotion or feeling. My favourite character is of course Hans Hubermann.
I highly recommend this book as it touches two very important and sensitive topic; prejudice and death. The setting of the story in World War II provides clear examples of the atrocities brought about by hate and misunderstanding.
Have you ever heard of the quote “finishing a good book is like leaving a good friend”? Well, that holds true for me with this book in particular. Definitely an excellent read. If you do decide to read the book, then remember: box loads of tissue people! Don’t say I didn’t warn you.


Nely said...

Great review! I've been wanting to read this for some time now. I think I'm going to get a copy of it sooner than later now.

♥ Nely

Alice Teh said...

I love this book and yes, I cried buckets too...

valentina said...

Hans is my favourite too!
I must re-read this soon, it was so good.

Azah said...

I'll conclude this book in my wish list. Your review makes it so irresistible.

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