The Book Thief by Markus Zusak | Teen Ink

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

March 2, 2012
By KatsK DIAMOND, Saint Paul, Minnesota
KatsK DIAMOND, Saint Paul, Minnesota
57 articles 0 photos 303 comments

Favorite Quote:
Being inexhaustible, life and nature are a constant stimulus for a creative mind.
~Hans Hofmann
You must stay drunk on writing so reality cannot destroy you.
~Ray Bradbury


I love the Book Thief. It is a book about a girl named Liesel, who is ten, in 1942 in Nazi Germany. She goes to live with foster parents, and it is on that journey that she is introduced to books. She first finds one called The Grave Digger’s Handbook, and it is her motivation to learn how to read. Once she reads that, with the help of her foster father, Hans Hubermann (he has ‘a silver soul’), she rescues other books and takes them as her own. They are a big part of her life, and life at that time, as words were what was empowering Hitler, putting Jews in concentration camps, and also rebelling against Hitler, too. She greatly enjoys reading, and amasses her own library.
This book, however, isn’t just about a girl’s coming-of-age. It’s about a man who dared to be different, relationships, and books. It’s about a man who is judged, as a Jew, and the man who is judging (Hitler). It’s about nonconformity, loss, and maturity (it also contains a smattering of German swear words).The story of the book thief is told from two points of view: the third person, but also from Death’s perspective. It’s a very unusual choice, but another that makes the Book Thief a great book. It’s very fitting for the book’s setting, and Death is very descriptive. Of course; why wouldn’t he be?
This, for me, was a stay-up-way-too-late-and-hope-nobody-notices book. I got totally enthralled Although I read every book that I get my hands on (even the whole Little House on the Prairie book series that my grandma gave me—case in point), I knew that this one was different. This has really changed my outlook on life. Every time I read it, I am amazed. This makes me want to go out and do something, something good, something courageous. This book makes me want to write, to describe lavishly, to use irony well. This book has helped me to dream, as not many other stories do.
If my writing hasn’t convinced you, hopefully his will. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the Book Thief:
“On the other was the squat shape of Rosa Hubermann, who looked like a small wardrobe with a coat thrown over it. There was a distinct waddle to her walk. Almost cute, if it wasn’t for her face, which was like creased-up cardboard and annoyed, as if she was merely tolerating all of it. Her husband walked straight, with a cigarette smoldering between his fingers. He rolled his own” (Zusak, 27).
“Frau Diller was a sharp-edged woman with fat glasses and a nefarious glare. She developed this evil look to discourage the very idea of stealing from her shop, which she occupied with soldierlike posture, a refrigerated voice, and even breath that smelled like ‘heil Hitler’” (Zusak, 50).
“So many humans. So many colors. They keep triggering inside of me. They harass my memory. I see them tall in their heaps, all mounted on top of each other. There is air like plastic, a horizon like setting glue. There are skies manufactured by people, punctured and leaking, and there are soft, coal-colored clouds, beating like black hearts.
And then.
There is death.
Making his way through all of it” (Zusak, 302).
In conclusion, you should read this book because it has an unusual narrator, it has great descriptions, and it is a thought-provoking and remarkable story.


The author's comments:
I got this book last spring on my spring break, and I fell in love with it*! I love how it, as a good book, conveys so much more than simply the plot. Also, the characters are different, and stand up for what they believe, but also make mistakes, as they are humans, as well. I also really love dark and witty humor.
*I'd lend you my copy, but I can't, so all I'll do is advocate for you to please, please read this book.

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This article has 2 comments.


on Mar. 16 2012 at 11:02 pm
SpringRayyn PLATINUM, Lakeville, Minnesota
34 articles 2 photos 658 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Don't punish yourself," she heard her say again, but there would be punishment and pain, and there would be happiness too. That was writing."
--Markus Zusak, "The Book Thief"

I like the last quote the best! I agree that this is a good book. The conclusion to your work is too short and weak. Couldn't you put as much into the conclusion as the rest of the work? Maybe try to be a little less obvious with how you phrase the conclusion and that would help a lot.

on Mar. 10 2012 at 10:32 pm
praveen.Trichy PLATINUM, Thirchy, Other
25 articles 0 photos 57 comments

Favorite Quote:
cruel leaders are replaced only to turn other leaders cruel

nice work.....plz check out my book review 'David Copperfield'


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