My (Sort Of) Review of The Book Thief

Happy New Year! I’m so excited for 2015 and all it brings.
The Book Thief… Where do I begin? It’s probably my favorite historical fiction novel I’ve read yet. This won’t be like many other book reviews I do. This is more of a “Why You Should Read This”, type of book review. (Kind of like a recommendation, with a touch of reviewing.)
It begins when Liesel Meminger is eight years old and riding on a train to her new foster parents. She doesn’t understand why her mother can’t take care of her anymore. Then, her brother dies. She steals a book at his funeral. And that’s where it all starts.
First of all, it’s narrated by Death. How cool is that?!?! Death isn’t this cold, heartless person either. He can be very sympathetic and caring. Just don’t ask him to be nice. Here are few of my favorite quotes from Death:
“Here is a small fact: You are going to die.”
“It kills me sometimes, how people die.”
“I am haunted by humans.”
I love Death’s voice. And Liesel interested him so much, he learned her story.
As for the story itself, it’s pretty much about a girl in Germany who takes books from wherever she can get them: book burnings, grave diggers, and the mayor’s wife. Her foster parents take in a Jew, and her whole perspective on life changes. I can’t say much more without spoilers. So just go read it. Like now.
As for the characters themselves, they’re so vivid I feel like I know them personally.
Liesel, the book thief, is probably one of the strongest girl I’ll ever read about.

She’s so innocent and naïve at the beginning, and at the ends she’s seen so many people die. I love her simplicity, loyalty and caring, and her fellow bookwormish tendencies.
Max, the Jew they take in, is a tough, strong fist fighter who is afraid of being caught. He can be quite poetic sometimes and loves words almost as much as Liesel. I love their special bond.

Rudy is Liesel’s best friend. Oh my gosh I ship them so hard. He’s incredibly loyal to Liesel, and it’s obvious to everyone except Liesel that he likes her. He would do pretty much anything for her.

And then there’s Liesel’s foster parents, who she calls Mamma and Papa.

Her momma is gruff, but you know that she loves Liesel. Her papa is an accordion player who teaches Liesel how to read. They have a really special relationship.

And the ending… No spoilers, but it actually made me tear up, which is super hard for me to do in a book. I looked kinda like this:

I give The Book Thief five out of five stars.
So there’s my (kind of) review of The Book Thief. Go read it. Like right now.
Have you read The Book Thief yet? If so, what did you think of it? And what other historical fiction novels do you think I should read and review?
Elizabeth

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12 thoughts on “My (Sort Of) Review of The Book Thief

  1. I read The Book Thief several months ago and I’m still trying to recover. It was a wonderful book, but it was just so gut-wrenching! But I fell completely in love with the characters, especially Max and Hans. In some ways, Hans sort of reminds me of Atticus Finch. I must say, I was a little leery about reading this book because I didn’t think I could take 500 pages of Death narrating a story, but I actually grew to like him a little bit. The story wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting with any other sort of narrator. I almost wish this would become a thing now, to have stories narrated by ideas like Death rather than by the author or a character.

    • I had read the book after my friend tried to get me to see the movie. I don’t watch movies without reading the book. And I was super wary too, but I read it, and I’m still trying to recover too. THAT WOULD BE SO COOL if stories where narrated by ideas! I might have to try that sometime.

  2. I actually haven’t read this book, BUT I did see the movie, so I know (at least the movie version) of the teary ending. I feel ya, I feel ya. X)

    • Yes. Even though it was foreshadowed almost the entire book, I was still pleading with the author not to do this despicable thing.
      Oh, and one more thing YOU HAVE TO READ THE BOOK! 😀

  3. I loved The Book Thief so much. I love historical fiction in general, but The Book Thief is definitely something special. The writing style is so fresh and beautiful, as is the general plotline. Also, Liesel is so relatable and likeable. And this book also has the perfect mix of rip-your-feels-out-sadness but also sweetness.

    • I totally agree! That’s a great way to sum it up. I loved every single thing about that novel. *ahem* Except for a few things at the end. I still haven’t recovered from it all.

  4. I DNFed The Book Thief because I didn’t have time to finish it, but I would love to continue! The story was great, and the idea of it being narrated by Death is epic. Love the pics!

  5. *feels hit like a ton of bricks* OH THIS BOOK MADE ME CRY. HORRIBLE MEAN BOOK. Lemme just wail for eternity….I cannot.
    Even.
    NO.
    I watched the movie first (LOVE these gifs) which is a bad bookwormish thing for me to do, but I read the book and seriously, the ending still hurt so bad. I love Lesiel and Rudy’s friendship. I love Mama and Papa! THEY ARE THE BEST. And I think the book and movie were sooo similar. It gladdens my soul, I tell you.
    Everyone needs to read this book.
    (Death was the best. Until, you know, Death sucked.)
    Thanks for stopping by @ Paper Fury!

    • I loved everyone’s relationships, I don’t think I could pick one The characters are all so likable. I would be best friends with Lesiel and Rudy and Max and like everyone. (Except for all the mean Nazis.)
      Now I HAVE to see the movie. My friends and I are going to get together soon and watch it. I hope.
      I agree. If I had enough money, I would buy a copy of this book for everyone on the planet.
      (Death is probably one of the top ten greatest narrators of all time. And then, he just had to ruin it. Or not. I still love the narrator. And hate him and the same time.)
      Any time! 😀

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