• sujata chaudhury

The Book Thief

The Book Thief is a novel written by Markus Zusak and published in 2005. It's the story of little girl Liesel and her life in war-torn Nazi Germany. You know a book is going to do permanent emotional wreckage when it's narrated by Death.


Death tells the story of a young girl Liesel Meminger. He has met her three times. All these three times she was the leftover. From the very first time, he saw Liesel he was intrigued by her. Liesel is sent to a foster family by her own mother as her father was taken away because he was a communist. She builds up a close relationship with her foster father Hans who is an accordionist. But the story really starts getting interesting when Hans has to keep a promise he made years ago.


I wish I had picked up this book way earlier. From the very first page, it got me hooked. The thing that drew me towards from the very beginning is it's writing style. I felt it was unique. The writer slips off important pieces of information early without any sort of explanation which only adds to your curiosity; now all you can do is read as fast as you can to find out how it happened. But the thing that makes this book come alive is its characters. Each character adds a different flavor to the book. Liesel, her foster father Hans, her friend Rudy, and the fist-fighter Max are easy to love. Though Liesel's mother sometimes beats her and calls her 'pig', as death said she is a good woman for a crisis. This book not only talks about the suffering of Jews in Nazi Germany but also about the moral dilemmas of people during the war. Each character gives the reader a message but the most important of them all is the power of words. As from Max's story "Yes, the Fuhrer decided that he would rule the world with words. 'I will never fire a gun,' he denied. 'I will not have to.' "


The book is quite long containing 584 pages. Though it's a long read it's not tedious at all. The story is written so wittily that you will lose count of the pages. Don't pick up this book if you are not a big fan of emotional novels because the story is very sad but then it is also the story of people who never stop doing good doesn't matter how hard times get. Don't repeat my mistake, pick this book up as early as possible because it's a story about humans, whom even death is haunted by.



“Together, they would watch everything that was so carefully planned collapse, and they would smile at the beauty of destruction.”

Markus Zusak, The Book Thief



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