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The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
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The Book Thief (original 2005; edition 2006)

by Markus Zusak

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
25,482154244 (4.37)4 / 1775
Member:AuthorMarion
Title:The Book Thief
Authors:Markus Zusak
Info:Knopf Books for Young Readers (2006), Edition: First, Hardcover, 560 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:Dachau, socialism, World War II, historical fiction

Work details

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak (2005)

  1. 579
    Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank (alalba, PghDragonMan, Anonymous user)
    PghDragonMan: Both side of hiding during the Holocaust
    Anonymous user: Both are about Holocaust. The Book Thief is from German girl's perspective whereas The Diary of a Young Girl is from a Jewish girl's perspective.
  2. 414
    To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (paulkid, Anonymous user)
    paulkid: There are many similarities between these books. For example, a strong father-daughter relationship, where the father teaches by example by taking the moral high ground in protecting a persecuted minority - also kids that break down the barriers between secluded and socially awkward neighbors through books and sundry shenanigans.… (more)
  3. 331
    The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne (Booksloth, frsantos)
  4. 242
    Night by Elie Wiesel (Smellsbooks)
  5. 170
    The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom (PghDragonMan, avidmom, rhshelver)
  6. 258
    Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut (weener)
  7. 193
    I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak (whymaggiemay, rosylibrarian)
  8. 100
    Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer (TessaSlingerland)
  9. 100
    Maus II: A Survivor's Tale: And Here My Troubles Began by Art Spiegelman (kaipakartik)
  10. 90
    The Chosen [Author Unknown] by Chaim Potok (avidmom)
  11. 91
    Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene (bethielouwho)
  12. 81
    Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum (loriephillips)
  13. 71
    Number the Stars by Lois Lowry (sleepykid00)
    sleepykid00: Both taken place during WWII, but in different perspectives.
  14. 71
    The Devil's Arithmetic by Jane Yolen (whoot, booklove2)
  15. 61
    The History of Love by Nicole Krauss (Ciruelo, heidialice)
  16. 73
    The Reader by Bernhard Schlink (lucyknows)
    lucyknows: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak may linked with The Reader by Bernhard Schlink using the themes of reading, Nazi Germany and death. You could also pair it with the graphic novel Maus by Art Spiegelman. Atonement by Ian McEwan could work as well because of the young protagonists, war, and reading.… (more)
  17. 41
    The Cellist of Sarajevo by Steven Galloway (mrstreme)
  18. 30
    Edelweiss Pirates, Operation Einstein by Mark A. Cooper (davidparsons, jacobwilliams007)
  19. 20
    Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler's Shadow by Susan Campbell Bartoletti (tiltheworldends)
    tiltheworldends: Nonfiction about BDM that Liesel was required to attend and Hitler Youth group that Rudy belonged to.
  20. 53
    Starring Sally J. Freedman as Herself by Judy Blume (Runa)

(see all 45 recommendations)

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Showing 1-5 of 1447 (next | show all)
How can I say any more than others have said. IT WAS WONDERFUL! I may have to buy this book because I want to own a copy, even though I have already read it. Like many others who have already reviewed it, I cried so hard. In fact, writing this review brings back tears that have been dried for many hours. The language was so beautiful. I have always believed that words have such great power and this book is one of the most powerful. Read it! I am sure I will read it again. ( )
  TheresaCIncinnati | Aug 17, 2015 |
This book is among my favorite young adult books. There were so many lovable characters in this book, and so many beautiful moments. I finished this book last night, and I missed the characters all night, I went to sleep thinking about them, and I even dreamed about them.

The narrartive style of the story is amazing, and the writing style kept me interested the whole time. The story takes place in Nazi Germany, so obviously there are tons of extremely heartbreaking moments. I shed so many tears while reading, both tears of joy and beauty, and tears of complete despair.

I think the author sums it up on the last page of the book, (not a spoiler), "I wanted to ask her how the same thing could be so ugly and so glorious, and its words so damning and brilliant." That is pretty much sums up what the book was for me, ugly and glorious, damning and brilliant.

I would recommend this book to everyone, especially fans of young adult Holocaust literature. ( )
  klburnside | Aug 11, 2015 |
I decided to re-review this and explain more why I disliked it.
I study Holocaust history in school and have a very hard time reading it as fiction because I find it never does a good job. That being said, it's not why I didn't like the book. The narrater was really annoying. There was little to no plot, and what plot we had was very dull and very boring. Nothing happened in the half of the book I read. I waited for a big plot thing or something interesting but nothing happened at all. ( )
1 vote thatgirlbookworm | Aug 5, 2015 |
This is a great entry in if you liked the movie, you should read the book. At first the length may seem daunting, but it moves quickly and reads well. In fact, it is a great work for when you are stranded on a cruise ship in Wittenberg. The plot centers around a young German girl who is so fascinated by books that she learns to read and begins stealing books (no, I'm not giving anything away. This is evident from the first words of the book - indeed, the title). As World War II begins around her, her connections with a young Jewish man on the run and a young apple thief in her class weave together to create a fascinating story, narrated by Death himself (who finds the usual image of scythe and black cape amusing). Touching, tragic, funny, and inspiring all in one. Not one to be missed. ( )
1 vote quantum_flapdoodle | Aug 1, 2015 |
I read this for a book group, and we had a great discussion about it. But I was definitely in the minority. I wasn't as enamored of it as the others. I was moved by the story, and it will definitely stay with me, but there were stretches that dragged, and other parts felt repetitive. Given the reactions of the others in the book group, I wonder if I was missing something. ( )
  louis.arata | Jul 31, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 1447 (next | show all)
Amazing the way something so beautiful can be written about such a dark period. Involving and completely addictive.
added by claudialima | editPortugal (Mar 30, 2012)
 
This over-praised, overlong novel is in trouble before it starts. The acknowledgments open with a tribute to someone “who is as warm as she is knowledgeable” and continue in the same saccharine manner.
 
Unsettling, thought-provoking, life-affirming, triumphant and tragic, this is a novel of breathtaking scope, masterfully told. It is an important piece of work, but also a wonderful page-turner. I cannot recommend it highly enough.
 
This is a moving work which will make many eyes brim. Zusak shows us how small defiances and unexpectedly courageous acts remind us of our humanity. It isn't only Death who is touched. Liesel steals our hearts too.
 
This is never an easy read, never a glide. But, in Zusak's ability to imagine and execute, he has achieved a very personal vision that grabs the reader and does not let go.
 

» Add other authors (15 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Zusak, Markusprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
White, TrudyIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Corduner, AllanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lodewijk, AnnemarieTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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People/Characters
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Important events
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Awards and honors
Epigraph
Dedication
For Elisabeth and Helmut Zusak,
with love and admiration
First words
First the colors. Then the humans. That's how I see things. Or at least how I try.
Quotations
Five hundred souls, I carried them in my fingers, like suitcases; or I'd throw them over my shoulder. It was only the children I carried in my arms. For some reason, dying men always ask questions they know the answer to. Perhaps it's so they can die being right.
In Liesel's mind, the moon was sewn into the sky that night. Clouds were stitched around it.
When the train pulled into the Bahnhof in Munich, the passengers slid out as if from a torn package.
A bathrobe answered the door. Inside it, a woman with startled eyes, hair like fluff and the posture of defeat stood in front of her.
The reply floated from his mouth, then moulded itself like a stain to the ceiling.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Information from the Catalan Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
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Information from the Dutch Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original language
Book description
Unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul ... With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, Liesel learns to read ... Sharing her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids ... Plus, sharing with the Jewish a man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.
Haiku summary
Words become life to
girl in Nazi Germany -
Narrated by Death.
(elbakerone)
An accordion

There was once a strange, small man

Liesel Meminger

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0375842209, Paperback)

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel 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 before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:42 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

Trying to make sense of the horrors of World War II, Death relates the story of Liesel--a young German girl whose book-stealing and story-telling talents help sustain her family and the Jewish man they are hiding, as well as their neighbors. Includes readers' guide.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 18 descriptions

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