Saturday, October 8, 2011

The Book Thief

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak was an amazing read! It takes place in the middle of Nazi Germany and is about the importance of words. Hitler used words to destroy and brainwash people. In the midst of the ugliness, a young girl learns the opposite power of words. Through books she befriends those who are overlooked and judged by others, including a Jew. She learns that words can calm people down in bomb shelters and amid personal grief. And she uses words to write her own story to give people hope that there is goodness in the middle of Nazi Germany.

I loved this book, I loved the unforgettable characters, I loved the message, I loved Zusak's style of writing. I loved reading from the perspective of a German and seeing the other side of Germany where people were kind to Jews and didn't support Hitler (risking their lives). I loved that Death is the narrator of the story. However, I did not like all of the swearing.

Here is a little taste of the book, this is part of a fairy tale written by the girl's Jewish friend:
"There was once a strange, small man. He decided three important details about his life:
1.He would part his hair from the opposite side of everyone else.
2.He would make himself a small, strange mustache.
3.He would one day rule the world.
The young man wondered around for quite some time, thinking, planning, and figuring out exactly how to make the world his. Then one day, out of nowhere, it struck him-the perfect plan. He'd seen a mother walking with her child. At one point, she admonished the small boy, until finally, he began to cry. Within a few minutes, she spoke very softly to him, after which he was soothed and even smiled.
The young man rushed to the woman and embraced her. "Words!' He grinned. "What?" But there was no reply. He was already gone.
Yes, the Fuhrer decided that he would rule the world with words. "I will never fire a gun," he devised. "I will not have to." Still, he was not rash. Let's allow him at least that much. He was not a stupid man at all. His first plan of attack was to plant the words in as many areas of his homeland as possible. 
He planted them day and night, and cultivated them.
He watched them grow, until eventually, great forests of words had risen throughout Germany...It was a nation of farmed thoughts."
It goes on to tell how a young girl plants a seed of a different kind which changed the thoughts of some people in the forest of hatred.
This was a great book! If you love to read about WWII like I do, I highly suggest The Book Thief! Just have some tissues nearby.


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