Customer Reviews for

The Book Thief

Average Rating 4.5
( 4244 )
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

227 out of 250 people found this review helpful.

Great Book! The Book Thief Steals Your Attention and Keeps It!

This is probably one of the most unique books I've read in like¿forever!

The story is narrated by Death and centers around the events of Nazi Germany in the 1940's.

I rarely give a book five stars. In that same token, I try to steer away from reco...
This is probably one of the most unique books I've read in like¿forever!

The story is narrated by Death and centers around the events of Nazi Germany in the 1940's.

I rarely give a book five stars. In that same token, I try to steer away from recommending books that have a morose tone, but this is a true exception. As much as you hope for, long for, and pray for a happy event to occur, you need to keep reminding yourself that the story is being told by Death, so chances of that happening are slim-to-none.

The main character of the story, Liesel Meminger, captured my heart. I loved the way the author, Markus Zusak, developed Liesel's character throughout the story and by a slight-of-hand, he added a side kick to the story, Rudy, who out of no where comes be one of the favored characters of the story. Great technique Zusak!

The premise of the story is unique and captivating. The narrator, Death, is much like Liesel where he/she has a way with words. Both of them recognize words for what they really are¿they can be used to stimulate good or evil. Through the power of words, we see how Hitler was able to control a country and persecute people.

Great book, awesome character development, insightful recount of Nazi Germany, and a life-long lesson¿what else can you ask for in a book?

posted by AvidBookworm on January 8, 2009

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Most Helpful Critical Review

40 out of 45 people found this review helpful.

Download The Book Thief For Free

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posted by 9114493 on August 5, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2008

    Review

    Mark Zusak's novel 'The Book Thief' is the powerful tale of Liesel Meminger, a young German girl who must learn to deal with the hardships and realities living in Nazi Germany. Before coming to stay with a foster family in Molching, everything near and dear to Liesel Meminger is taken away from her. Liesel is robbed of a brother, and is given up by a mother who cannot afford to take care of her. To settle the score, Liesel steals books and earns the title of The Book Thief. The story is narrated by death, better known as the grim reaper, but Zusak does not play into the stereotypical ideas of how death thinks, sees, or feels. Zusak adds his own whimsical twists to the story by contradicting everything that people believe about the grim reaper. To begin with, Zusak does not outright introduce the narrator. Instead the reader must come to the realization of who their narrator is by themselves. The largest hint you are given as to who exactly the narrator is comes from the part where the narrator describes his 'job'. 'It suffices to say that at some point in time, I will be standing over you as genially as possible. Your soul will be in my arms. A color will be perched on my shoulder. I will carry you gently away.' An unexpected pleasure of the grim reaper is observing the colors of the sky at the time of each person's death. Each time that death claims another soul, the sky turns a different shade of blue, gray, or brown. The narrator does not enjoy dragging the souls out from the dead. The grim reaper uses the colors of the sky to distract him from the task at hand he is sorry for what he must do. One aspect of Zusak's personal writing style that I enjoyed, though I am certain many people would not, is that pieces of information are given away so as to let the reader know what happens at the end of each section or chapter. Some may consider this ruining the ending, but I believe it makes the reader all the more curious and eager to read quickly and discover how the 'ruined ending' comes about. ¿The Book Thief¿ was outside the type of book I would normally read, but it has become on of my favorite books and I highly recommend it.

    28 out of 32 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2008

    A very Good Book

    This book is great. Well written and just great. But it was a little tough to get into. It seems to drag on a little bit to much but besides that it's great!

    9 out of 11 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2014

    The Book Thief is an excellent book. It¿s a fiction novel, but f

    The Book Thief is an excellent book. It’s a fiction novel, but for the most part it is historically accurate. The tone is usually informative, but there are a few comical parts in this story. The point of view is third omniscient where the narrator is all knowing. The cool part about this book is that the narrator is death. Death is present in all situations anywhere you go, but in Nazi Germany there is more here than usual. It brings a unique and interesting point of view to the novel. The main characters are Liesel and her family. Liesel is a sad little girl who lost her brother. Hans is a caring foster father. Rosa is a scornful, yet caring foster mother. Rudy is a troublesome little boy who just wants a kiss. The intended audience is probably high school level and above. This is due to the more adult vocabulary and concepts found in the novel. In general it is a very good book. The events will take you by surprise and the ending brings many emotions. The main theme was probably that people are people and they are all equal. They treat each other very poorly and need to learn a lesson. I agree with this. People are cruel and should not treat each other the way they do. Hitler was very wrong in his ways and not only the Jews and handicapped, but Germans suffered because of him as well. I really like the informative facts about what was going on in Germany at the time. There was even a valid description of Hitler and his life. There was also a cute little romance in the book. I didn’t like that death gave away a few events before they happened and out of sequence. It takes away some of the surprise. He also specifically mentioned that he doesn’t like surprise. The author did a great job in writing this book. It would be Farley difficult to write from this point of view and they pulled it off. The only thing I would change is how the narrator gives things away too early. That way the ending comes as more of a shock when you are more connected to the characters.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 29, 2014

    Hard to put down!

    I have really enjoyed reading this book. It is told from the perspective of death, which I find fascinating and have never read a book being told from this POV before. I like how foreshadowing is used to give just a hint of what is to come so that you have to keep reading to find out exactly what happens. The only reason I didn't give 5 stars is because the formatting is a little off for the the NOOK book, which sometimes makes reading difficult.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 20, 2014

    Book theif

    I just started this book and it seems great! However the language is the only thing i'm concerned about.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2014

    Excellent read

    I really enjoyed this story. At first I didn't like that the story was narrated by death, but once I got used to it it wasn't so bad, it actally made the story more interesting. I fell in love with the characters, and cried when some of them died. I definitely recommend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 14, 2014

    Not sure how the movie will be, but this was an inspiring and wo

    Not sure how the movie will be, but this was an inspiring and worthwhile read. I was touched.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2014

    Highly recommend

    Don't be put off by the number of pages. The narritive coming from deaths point of view adds a different perspective on a familar story line. A fast read with characters you grow to love

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 16, 2013

    This was so well written. It should be required reading for all

    This was so well written. It should be required reading for all high school kids!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 8, 2013

    It's really good

    However, it does swear frequently, so l had to take off a star

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2013

    The Book Thief

    This book was recommended to me. At first I wondered why since the first 50 pages or so were so slow. Then the book was impossible to put down!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 20, 2013

    The Book Thief is one of the most intriguing books I have ever

    The Book Thief is one of the most intriguing books I have ever read. I thoroughly enjoyed reading it and would read it over again. The genre this book falls into is historical fiction. The tone of this book is hopeful and the mood is promising. The point of view for this book is written in first person limited by the narrator who is identified as death. However, Zusak does not conform to the stereotypical views of death and says he look like any other person. The main characters of the book are Liesel who is an orphaned Germen girl who goes to like with the Hubermann’s. The Hubermanns are Hans who teaches Liesel to read and has a special relationship her and Rosa who has a certain love hate relationship with Liesel. Another main character is Rudy who befriends Liesel. There was also Max a Jew who finds safety in the Hubermann’s home and befriends Liesel. And of course Death who narrates the entire book. The intended audience for this book is teenagers who are interested in historical fiction. I absolutely loved this book. It was very well written and I was interested in it until the very end. I agreed with the main theme of the book because it was interesting and well executed. I specifically liked Liesel’s character. She was very determined and strong-willed. She knew what she wanted and she followed through with learning everything she needed to learn. The author did a wonderful job portraying Liesel and all of the other characters. He made them endearing and interesting to learn about throughout the book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 14, 2013

    Book review

    This was a great book one of the best i ever read

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2012

    Beautifully written

    Wonderful interwoven story lines

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 26, 2011

    Excellent

    "The Book Thief" by Marcus Zusak was a brilliant description of a possible tragedy in Nazi Germany in the 1940's. Although it was not a true story, the plot could have very likely happened. The author's tone appealed to the reader's emotion. Told by death, "The Book Thief" describes a young girl who is faced with troubles and left alone after her mother is forced to giver her up for adoption and Werner, her younger brother, tragically dies. Liesel then goes on to her adoptive parents Rosa and Hans Hubermann where the real action occurs. Along the way, she encounters numerous people who she becomes close friends with, including Rudy, a neighbor, and Max, a Jew the Hubermanns hide in their basement. Liesel finds a way to look past the tragedies and horrors occurring around her and finds comfort in her father and words in books. She becomes so passionate and interested in learning and reading more that she will go to any length to fetch herself a good book. Zusak does a terrific job creating his characters so that they are never boring, and always have something intriguing to add to the story. He made it impossible for the reader not to connect with the characters and feel a heartfelt attachment. Its historical significance also made this book riveting and engaging. All in all, "The Book Thief" was an amazingly written sincere story with courageous characters, an appealing storyline, and surprising twists. It never ceased to keep my attention and make me want to read more. I loved how it was so realistically relatable to this time period in Germany and how real people, like the Nazis and Hitler were intertwined. Zusak did an amazing job at keeping his readers interested and appealing to the reader's emotions. Although I wished that the Himmel Street bombing did not kill as many people as it did. Other than that, this book was amazing.
    --Alexis Buker

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 3, 2011

    READ IT!!!!!

    The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, I really thought, was quite an amazing book. I knew I would like it because I love reading books in the World War II time frame. To me it is the most interesting era of time to read about. I do not recommend this book for people that only read easy reads. This book is challenging, but absolutely worth the read. The story line is heart-touching, and i really found myself unable to put this book down because i really wanted to know what would happen next. My favorite aspect of this book is the fact that the narration is 3rd person omniscient. Knowing how everyone in the book is feeling gives you a very all knowing understanding of the story. The best part is the narrator is Death itself!! But, to anyone that loves reading this would be an amazing book for you to read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 6, 2010

    Very good

    The Book Thief is a book about a young girl living in Nazi Germany with her foster parents. She really wants to learn how to read and her foster father teaches her. She 'steals' books from Nazi book burnings and the library of the wife of the mayor. I found the interesting part of the book not to be the actual story, but the way that the story is told. The narrator of the story is Death, and Death explains the life of the Book Thief from his point of view. He is tired of his job, but he has to continue to collect souls forever because he doesn't think anyone in the universe deserves such a horrible job. He tells about how he saw the Book Thief a few times during her life when he collected souls around her. He tells her story through a book that he she wrote and he stole when she dropped it and forgot about it. The other incredible part of the book is the extreme uses of figurative language. Nearly every page in the book has incredible imagery and personification to describe the interactions between the Book Thief and the environment and people around her. The way that Zusak uses figurative language seems extremely effortless. The original ideas of using Death as a narrator and his extreme use of figurative language make The Book Thief a must read for all people in their mid-teens to adults.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2010

    A must read!

    This book is one of the best books i have ever read truly a must read. The detail is great and the story line is amazing!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 12, 2010

    The Book Thief

    The book thief is an incredible story about a young girl growing up in Nazi Germany who loves books. Her love for her community-especially her kind and accordion-playing foster father-help her through hard times. From stealing books to hiding Jews, she leads a very eventful youth that will define the rest of her life.
    Recommended for patient readers who enjoy an exciting book filled with everything from war to school, I give this book a solid four stars.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 24, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A new perspective on World War 2.

    I loved this book. It was an entirly new perspective on ww2. It was very eyeopening and humbling. This is the kind of book that is truly unforgetible.

    The book is in deaths point of view and it was the perfect perspective. Most people think that war is deaths best friend but not in this book. Death is tired. Tired of war, people dieing, and his "job".

    I would recomend this book to pretty much everyone. It is absolutly amazing how the book fits together. You feel as if you are realy there and you know everyone.

    I strongly recomend this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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