The Book Thief – A student review

‘The Book Thief’, written by Markus Zusak, offers an alternative story of Germany during the Second World War, and presents how conflict can cause a downfall of one’s country.  The words within the novel are powerful and heart-warming, offering both hope as well as the survival of hardship under the Third Reich. This moving novel creates sympathy of the survivor’s stories as well as a deeper understanding of mankind and the harsh cruelty possibe other human beings.  As mentioned by ‘Scotsman’s report, “Zusak’s writing is hugely imaginative” and creative, as the story is narrated by death, or perhaps a higher being, or God. This is presented in the quote “I could introduce myself properly, but it’s not really necessary … I will be standing over you, as genially as possible. Your soul will be in my arms”. Zusak’s creative writing infuses religion through even the darkest of times in history, perhaps Zusak is asking his readers to consider their own beliefs and how they are affected.

Although Liesel is known as the “book thief”, she was inspired by the words within the stories and wanted to further her education, does that still make her a book thief or someone who is courageous, who gathers inspiration and transforms it into her daily life. Furthermore can we ultimately call ourselves “book thieves”? As the author’s create words that inspire our understanding of the world we live in and further our development of finding love through friendship and family, the fulfilment of grace and pursue loyalty towards others.

I would recommend this book to those in year 9/10 and above as Zusak’s imaginative language can pull on anybody’s heartstrings, also be prepared to have tissues.

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