Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new 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.
This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.
©2006 Markus Zusak; (P)2006 Random House Inc. Listening Library, an imprint of the Random House Audio Publishing Group
"The astonishing characters, drawn without sentimentality, will grab readers." (Booklist)
"Zusak has created a work that deserves the attention of sophisticated teen and adult readers....An extraordinary narrative." (School Library Journal)
"The Book Thief will appeal both to sophisticated teens and adults with its engaging characters and heartbreaking story." (Bookmarks Magazine)
Captivating, enlightening, heart-breaking
There are so many to choose from! Perhaps the aftermath of the bombing.
Obviously Liesel but death, the narrator, takes a close second.
A great book written from a different perspective both in narration and in the common German experience in the war.
I loved this book-all 12 hours of it. The story was wonderfully crafted and the reader made the listening experience even better. Want to have the paper book for my library as well.
Rosa-I loved to hear him say Zaumeinch!
They were amazing, it was hard to choose, Rudy? the Mayor's wife? Rosa? Really it was Papa, if only there had been more men like Papa in 1939......
This was a beautiful story, told from a poor corner of Munich during WWII. The author is clever with his descriptions (a cardboard woman, a man made of oak, a candle-haired boy) but not to the point that the unusual turn of his phrases distracts from the story. It's a sad story, as anything set in this time must be. But it's much more than that--it's not a tearjerker or an epic tragedy--it focuses on the details of a few lives and manages to be uplifting and even funny at times. Corduner was spot on as Death, personified. He has a great baritone voice with real color. My only issue was that his voice had such depth that it was sometimes distracting when he voiced children and women. Don't let that dissuade you from listening though--by and large his performance is engaging and the story is worth your time.
I think this story was just dull. I listened to all but the last hour and could go long periods of time without noticing it. The genre and idea could have been good but nothing happens. The girl moves in, they hide someone, the son becomes estranged....but for some reason none of it touched me in any way.
Don't get all the glowing reviews. There are plenty of other tragedies you can listen to that will be more interesting.
"Death" as the narrator was a little disengaging in the beginning and I actually stopped listening. It seemed somewhat gimmicky and inappropriate. I went back and reread some of the reviews and decided to give it another chance. I have to agree with the reviews that said to “stick with it” because it wasn't long before I became riveted on every word and was totally carried away by the story. The narrator was superb and portrayed every character in a totally believable manner. Male, female, young and old all came forth with their own distinct personalities and were presented in such a way that caused them to live and breathe with the story. I actually became comfortable with "Death" and trusted him to be truthful in his matter-of-fact accounting of events.
It is always difficult to read about Nazi Germany and revisit the horrors surrounding that time. One does not begin a book such as this without being prepared to “open the wound” again and that is how it should be. It was a horrific time that must never be forgotten. The story being so calmly told from such a distant perspective in no way minimizes the depth of emotions that are evoked as the story unfolds. The writing was excellent as was the narration.
The events progress in a starkly realistic fashion but the detail and insight into the hearts of its characters is riveting and unforgettable. The relationship with Leisel and Papa was the most beautiful, but the book is rich with relationships and how they developed. The tragic events of this young girls life and of those she loves are heart-wrenching at times but the joys and triumphs are exhilarating. The narrator's foreshadowing does not make it any easier to endure some of the moments that will have you cringing in fear or sighing with relief.
I wanted many things to happen differently, but in the end it was was above and beyond what I dared to hope for. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and encourage anyone contemplating this book to give it a try and stay with it. I ended up doing quite a lot of marathon listening because I just could not tear myself away from the town of Molching and the remarkable family that lived on Himmel Street number 33.
It was just sad start to finish. Things get a little bit better in the middle even though it's sad. Then it rounds out with a nice sad twist. I liked the book because I felt like the character came alive. The writer did a wonderful job making the charters real, and the narrator brought them to life. I've been call everyone Saumensches, and Saurkels. I've been using the phase "Jesus, Mary, and Joseph" also. I took a break from it on a day that I was really stressed, but the following day I was ready to read again. I would
I liked Rudy. He was his own person. He was smart and athletic. Very well rounded. I enjoyed him. a lot.
I would like a follow up book. I would like to know what happened to Leisel after she went to live with the Mayor's wife.
This has to be the best book my wife and I have read (audio version) to date. The only problem was that it ended. A must read.
There were so many, the entire book was a memorable moment
Yes, He read each character so personally.
Yes, if I could have
Absolutely - and already have.
Too many to narrow down and favorites would be spoiler alerts. Her clinging to the front gate in the beginning is one. The development of her relationship with her new father another.
Another favorite narrator of mine. His accent was perfection.
I could have.
I had this sitting in my Audible library for quite a while and it's only by accident that I listened to it. I had downloaded another book to listen to and it was awful from the beginning. I looked for another one to quickly download as I was walking out the door. So thankful that it was The Book Thief. Loved, loved, loved this book.
Different view point
I liked this book because it was written from the point-of-view of the average German family living during World War II. Death is the story teller and his tells about his encounters with a young girl. Not everyone is German is guilty.
The narration was impeccable! I miss the story and characters now that it's over, a sure sign of a great novel! You can't go wrong with this one!
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