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The Book Thief Online PDF by Markus Zusak

Click Here to Download the Book A New York Times bestseller for seven years running that's soon to be a major motion picture, this Printz Honor book by the author of I Am the Messenger is an unforgettable tale about the ability of books to feed the soul. Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking 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. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Reviews This novel -- about the power of books and of words -- is amazing. It's narrated by Death (a creative choice that has great potential for ending up contrived) but Zusak makes the character wise, beleaguered, and gentle. Taking place in Nazi Germany, the story deals with anti-Semitism and is, understandably, anti-war. The author makes some very unusual word choices (adjectives and adverbs especially); and although the poet in me loved some of them, at other times they took me momentarily out of the story. ("Why did he choose that? And what does he mean, exactly?") But even that editorial complaint is not enough to remove even a fraction of a star in the rating. The book is beautifully written, and the plot, characterizations, and sense of place are incredibly well done.

This is an impressive novel. The narrator for this tale is the Angel of Death. Death follows Liesel Meminger throughout a three year period at the start of World War II. The story reminds me of "The Castle in the Forest" by Norman Mailer, although the demon narrating that story feels little love for humans. The narrator in "The Book Thief" is constantly puzzled by humans, both for the good and bad things they do to each other. We meet Liesel when her brother dies on the train taking them to a foster home outside of Munich, Germany. Death becomes interested in the little girl when it comes for her brother. Although she can't read, she takes the book that the young gravedigger drops. Death watches her do this and becomes even more interested the this girl. Liesel moves in with a foster family, the Hubermann's. Where she has difficulty adjusting to a new family and cannot rid her mind of bed wetting nightmares. Her foster father, Hans, is a WWI veteran that Death is aware of; Hans has already cheated death when his unit was slaughtered in battle with only one survivor. Hans plays the piano accordion for Liesel and he teaches her letters, reads to her and helps her learn new words and writing. Hans is a beautiful character. Rudy Steiner, who lives next door to the Hubermann's, meets and falls for Liesel. He carries himself with a confidence seldom seen in 10 year old and they become fast friends. Playing soccer in the street and, eventually, getting knee deep in mischief. After Rudy learns of the exploits of Jesse Owens in the 1936

Olympics, he rubs coal all over himself to darken his skin and runs the races as Owens in his mind. Liesel is told this story so often and with such vigor that her mind places her there, as though as was a witness. Rudy's main goal in life is get a kiss from Liesel and goes to extreme lengths, including jumping in a cold river to retrieve her book. He is stonewalled in his attempts at a little slap and tickle. Rudy also refuses to back down from the local bullies, receiving more an couple unjust beatings. Even the Angel of Death is moved by Rudy. "He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It's his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry" (p.531, 2006 hardcover edition). The focus on the war, including Hans hiding the Jewish son of a man that saved his life in World War I gives the reader a glimpse into the terror that people felt from their government for protecting Jewish German citizens. The novel is geared toward high level young adult readers, but I would recommend this book to everyone. The vocabulary and the length of the novel (550 pages) will scare off a lot of young readers, but this is an excellent novel, an important story that needs to be read.

A couple of weeks ago I achieved my goal to finish reading 48 books in English without using a dictionary. It wasn't easy and I tended to give it up midway many times. When I returned to Japan from America with my last trip this year, I realized that I just finished reading 16 books, and I have only 3 months left. I couldn't think in a positive way, but I really didn't like to give it up because last year I dropped it out. I pushed myself hard to reach my goal for three months, but I don't think the way is good to complite something. Next year I also have the same goal as this year, but I would like to try to read two of over 1000 paged books in English without using a dictionary. So, I want to manage my time to read 48 books and enjoy my reading time more. The book was the best ever for me to read in 48 books this year. It's my second book to read about Holocaust. It's fiction but it's really written well. At the last part I couldn't stop my tear dropping. Since I want to learn about Holocaust more, I want to read some other books relates to the history next year.

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