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The Book Thief | [Markus Zusak]

The Book Thief

It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. 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.
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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - One of the best examples of young adult literature that adults will love (as well as more mature teens), The Book Thief alternates between heartwarming and heartbreaking, always packing an emotional punch with each of Markus Zusak’s carefully chosen words – as brilliantly conveyed by Allan Corduner, who takes on Death, and so much more, in this novel set in Nazi Germany. —Diana D.

Publisher's Summary

It's just a small story really, about, among other things, a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery.

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

What the Critics Say

  • Book Sense Book of the Year Award, Children's Literature, 2007

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (9137 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Charlie Charlotte, NC, United States 07-05-12
    Charlie Charlotte, NC, United States 07-05-12 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A great book that begs for audio"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This is such a terrific book. The story of a fostered pre-teen girl in WWII Germany told from a completely unique point-of-view will never be forgotten. It's beauty is especially powerful when rendered in audio and the read by Alan Corduner strikes the perfect chord, wistful and lovely.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    mary FRANKLIN, IN, United States 07-02-12
    mary FRANKLIN, IN, United States 07-02-12 Member Since 2010
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    "I hope death is this gentle."
    Any additional comments?

    I enjoyed The Book Thief very much. The writing and the plot are wonderful, as it the idea in general. The characters were well presented and very funny, especially the children.

    The narrator added to the quality of this book. The matter-of-fact presentation is just what is called for here, and the accent is nice, too. I like this version of death personified. I hope the real one is this feeling.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeannie Yuba City, CA, United States 07-01-12
    Jeannie Yuba City, CA, United States 07-01-12 Member Since 2010
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    9
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    "Excellent book"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Book Thief to be better than the print version?

    I prefer audio. I walk for exercise a lot, and it is very nice to concentrate on a good story while walking.


    What other book might you compare The Book Thief to and why?

    Sarah's Key. Holocaust stories.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When she broke into the mayor's house and took a book from his library.


    If you could take any character from The Book Thief out to dinner, who would it be and why?

    Her adoptive father. He was a very compassionate man and led a very interesting life.


    Any additional comments?

    This book was well written and did not get too gruesome with the Holocaust happenings.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R. J. Melton OKC 06-29-12
    R. J. Melton OKC 06-29-12 Member Since 2008

    I read too much, like most genre, & am picky about narrators. I like strong characters, great dialogue, & quirky bits!

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    "This made my top 100 Book List."

    This is a beautiful story narrated by Death and set in Nazi Germany. A tale of hardship, heartbreak, and hope. Melancholic? yep, life affirming? yep Do I recommend it? Every single word, every nuance and with every tear...I hope you choose to share the experience. The narrator was great, the entire package worth every penny. I don't think we can ever afford to forget this tragedy and this book makes it all so real, how the German people suffered and starved and lived in fear... how the Jews fought for survival. This ranks in my top 100 books...and I have read thousands...over 600 Audibles alone, God only knows what I spend with Amazon. I know from whence I speak. Spend a credit, set aside a time to really listen...you will not regret this purchase.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JanBreesmom MIRA LOMA, CA, United States 06-27-12
    JanBreesmom MIRA LOMA, CA, United States 06-27-12 Member Since 2011

    Breesmom

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Childhood in 1940's Germany"
    Where does The Book Thief rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Somewhere in the middle. It was a unique book but very long and hard reading (emotionally).


    What did you like best about this story?

    I liked the narrator; he is very good. I liked many of the characters. The story was written in an interesting way.


    Which character – as performed by Allan Corduner – was your favorite?

    The papa--Hans,sr....Liesel...Max.....the mayor's wife....it's hard to choose just one among the many memorable characters.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No. It took many sittings.


    Any additional comments?

    No.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christal Austin, TX, United States 06-22-12
    Christal Austin, TX, United States 06-22-12 Listener Since 2010
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    "An Amazing Performance"

    I never write reviews, but I felt compelled to share just how wonderful the performance of this audiobook was. Allan Corduner captured each character perfectly. I never lost track of who was speaking. The humor, the heartbreak. It was all there. I don't usually re-read (or re-listen to) books, but I know I'll want to experience this book again.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mrs West New York, NJ, United States 06-22-12
    Mrs West New York, NJ, United States 06-22-12
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    "Outstanding!"

    What a beautifully written and read book. Alan Corduner has definitely perfected each character. You will love it. I did not want it to end.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Diane Crone West Des Moines, Iowa United States 06-21-12
    Diane Crone West Des Moines, Iowa United States 06-21-12 Member Since 2009
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    "Never been so emotionally involved with characters"

    This is a riveting story with masterful narration by "Death." Narrator Allan Corduner brings this book to life and I became very involved with each character, often being reduced to tears or raised with laughter. Not a light read, but a story that leaves one sad and uplifted at the same time. Highly recommend!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    paperboy 05-24-12
    paperboy 05-24-12 Member Since 2011
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    12
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    "The Narrator was a great as Death"
    Where does The Book Thief rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    I actually had the book and began to read it. Curiosity made me click the little round button on Audilble under the cover of the Book Thief. Well, When I heard Allan Corduner's voice, I said that is the perect voice for death and purchased the book right then and began to listen. His voice took me on a journey with death and Lisle. One that will haunt me for a long time. Beautifully written with such insight. This should be on a book list for Middle Schools and High Schools.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The Narrator


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarah SHOREWOOD, IL, United States 05-15-12
    Sarah SHOREWOOD, IL, United States 05-15-12
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    "Wonderful story and wonderful narration!"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Book Thief to be better than the print version?

    I am so glad I listened to this book rather than read the print version. Allan Corduner does a fabulous job bringing the story and characters to life. It was such a pleasure to listen to.

    I loved this book!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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