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Tuesday, April 8, 2014

✦✦WEDNESDAY REWIND - THE BOOK THIEF by Markus Zusak: A Warrior Fairy review✦✦

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

Liesel 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.

Originally reviewed on August 2013

Rating: 5 out of 5

I've had this on my shelf for years now but never really got around to reading it. I'm glad I didn't read this sooner. Not because I didn't like it, but because I don't think I would have appreciated it as much if I had read it when I was younger.
This book is narrated by Death. He (She? It?) isn't the typical grim, hooded figure with a sickle that's meant to be terrifying (or at least according to him, he's not), but someone who carries souls in his hands, is fascinated by colors and is constantly marveling at the complexity of humankind.

This story is set during WWII in Nazi Germany. One of the unique traits of this story is that Zusak didn't choose to focus on either the oppressed and the oppressor. He chose to tell the story of a family who was caught in the middle in one of the unfortunate places you could be in that time. 

Did they deserve any better, these people?
How many had actively persecuted others, high on the scent of Hitler's gaze, repeating his sentences, his paragraphs, his opus? Was Rosa Hubermann responsible? The hider of a Jew? Or Hans? Did they all deserve to die? The children?

While dealing with a morbid subject, the book isn't totally depressing because Death has a sense of humor, and the characters are all very engaging. It's like there's a light in the darkness. With all the troubles that are plaguing them, some form of hope still manages to radiate.

Death also has a tendency to spoil things ahead, but that works so well here because it only increases your dread when you finally get to that page, crushing your futile hopes that he was wrong.

This is definitely a read that will definitely touch you and teach you to find that silver lining even in the worst times. 



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