“The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak

Star Rating: 5 out of 5 stars ☆☆☆☆☆


Liesel Meminger is a 10-year-old girl who is being given to a foster family at 33 Himmel Street in 1939’s Nazi Germany.  Her foster parents are Hans and Rosa Hubermann.  Although each of them has their own set of quirks, they are both loving foster parents for the lost and troubled Liesel.  Liesel makes friends with a neighborhood child named Rudy Steiner.  Over the next four years, their lives become more and more intertwined.

Liesel has a penchant for stealing books, hence the tltle she earns as “The Book Thief” throughout the novel.  Despite the title, in the first parts of the novel, Liesel is illiterate.  Her new Papa, Hans Hubermann, aids Liesel in learning how to read, and they both relish the time they spend together reading both stolen and gifted books.

A story taking place in Nazi Germany cannot be without a storyline that includes a hidden Jewish person, and so Zusak includes this very emotional topic into his book as well.  Max Vandenberg is a young Jewish man hidden by the family mid-book.  Emotionally, he means the world to Liesel.

This book covers the years between 1939 (with some flashbacks) to 1943 (with some forward-flashes).   Primarily set in the height of World War II and the horrors that were taking place in Nazi Germany at the time, this book can be an emotional read.


Marcus Zusak is a literary genius.  His majestic writing style captures me immediately.  I’m in love with all of his writings at this point and will fervently push his writings onto all of you and anyone else I may meet throughout my days.  His writing is distinctive and beautiful.

What makes this novel stand out the most is it’s narrator:  Death.  Yes, THE  Death.

Watching the life of a German child and her family and friends through the eyes of such a morbid figure gives this novel the fresh perspective I do not believe anything else could possibly give it.   I could not put this book down.  Between the intensely beautiful writing of Zusak that pulls you in like a Category 5 Tornado along the plains of Kansas, using Death himself as a narrator just makes this book that much more of an important read.

I recommend all of you stop what you are currently doing right now.  If you have not read this book as of yet.  Read it.  Today.  Go to your local bookstore and buy it.  Go to your local library and rent it.  Click on my link below to Amazon.com and order it.  Do whatever you must to get this book into your hands as quickly as possible.  Your world is incomplete without it.  Trust me. 

GoodReads Link: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Amazon.com Link: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

For all those who haven’t had the pleasure of seeing this fantastic book-to-film adaptation, here is the trailer!