The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Posted April 10, 2015 by shooting in Uncategorized / 23 Comments

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Review by Lauren

Source: personal copy; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a
meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something
she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster
father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her
neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in
her basement.

Review: I’ve heard many great things about this book for years now, and I’ve been wanting to read it for just as long. It wasn’t until my YA Literature course this semester that I finally sat down and did just that. This was a book my professor assigned for everyone to read during our Historical Fiction section. Many of you have probably read this book or heard a lot about it already, so I won’t make this a terribly long review. What you really need to know is that this was a beautifully written novel, full of fascinating characters and narrated by an equally intriguing character: Death.

Death as the narrator is the aspect of the book that I always thought about when this book was mentioned. I wasn’t sure how it would work, but it was pulled off very well. This is the only book I’ve read by Zusak, but it won’t be the last. He’s a fantastic writer. This book is full of quotes and moments that leave you breathless and thoughtful.


The Book Thief is something you want to read again – and share with others in the hopes that they will love it too, or at least find it fascinating enough to discuss with you.

23 responses to “The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

  1. I simply adore this book, no two ways about it. It's already a classic, and I can only imagine the pressure Marcus feels to write something just as good. No wonder we've been waiting for ages to read The Bridge of Clay!

  2. I've been so afraid to read this, simply because the movie was so beautiful and has such a special place in my heart.

    I'm so glad you loved the book – it's one so many people tell me is their favourite of all time.

  3. Been wanting to read this for ages, bought it finally last year, but still haven't read it. Everytime I go to, I'm like "Do you really want to cry right now?" But really interested how it goes considering you already know how it ends.

  4. Ah yes Death is always an intriguing character. I didn't know about this one so I'm surprised but I'm curious mainly by the writing style now.

  5. "I've heard many great things about this book for years now, and I've been wanting to read it for just as long." This. I've had it out from the library and should really get it soon, I know I will probably like it (I'm loving that quote and the narrator concept) but I can't bring myself to pick it up and I don't know why! Glad you liked it.

  6. This has been in my pile forever. I keep putting it off, thinking I want some uninterrupted time. I guess I should just go for it and accept the interruptions.

  7. :):) So glad this one meant so much to you, Lauren! It meant a lot to me as well. I can think of a few people who didn't like the way Death spoiled upcoming events in the plot and I guess I can see their point, but to me this book was life-changing.

  8. I picked up this book in the summer of 2014, but immediately put it down, because I found the POV narration to be quite confusing. I have repeated this frustration over and over, only to have those who have read the book say, "NO! Read it NOW!"

    I need to. Like, soon! Great review!

  9. I'm absolutely thrilled you loved this one Lauren, I think I'm among only a few who hasn't read it yet. I have my copy sitting on my shelf, but it's just finding the time to sit down and enjoy it. That quote is absolutely stunning! It sounds so beautifully lyrical, and that you've described it as breathtaking? That's more than enough for me to get off my ass and move it to the top of my list.

    Lovely review Lauren, absolutely loved it! <3

  10. I have yet to read this book! I bought it recently but because I wasn't feeling it much, I decided to lend it to a friend instead. I can agree that I loved Death as a narrator and his snarky remarks here and there. it made the narration very interesting. I had lost some interest at seeing how slow I was reading it that I decided to watch the movie and loved it! Because of that though, now I can't wait to get my copy back to finish it <3 Nice review 🙂

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