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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.
Regular Price:$41.27
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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 (11499 )
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4.6 (9308 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Bksmrt Illinois, USA 04-09-13
    Bksmrt Illinois, USA 04-09-13 Member Since 2015

    Community Outreach Librarian. I wouldn't finish half as many books, if it wasn't for audio books! Mostly love non-fiction, though have loved many fiction recommendations from my colleagues!

    ratings
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    16
    1
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    Story
    ""Death" as Narrator is creative perspective"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Excellent story, characters and reader, with fine German accent. Learned more WWII history, German words and pronunciations.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The characters were wonderful. Extremely well written, believable and alive.


    What about Allan Corduner’s performance did you like?

    Everything. His tone, accent, and the depth of emotions in his voice.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    When Lisel finally kissed Rudy.


    Any additional comments?

    Highly recommend this audio book. I did look at the print copy and realized the many drawings included, that I did not see, but it did not diminish my enjoyment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Megan 04-09-13
    Megan 04-09-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
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    38
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    Story
    "Phenomenal performance of a fantastic story!"
    If you could sum up The Book Thief in three words, what would they be?

    Fascinating, Poignant, Intriguing


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    The narrator of the story is "death." He is a grim reaper character. I was immediately taken into the story by this unique twist. No matter what your religion or faith, this narrator is such a powerful perspective that the book is truly one of the best I have ever read.


    Any additional comments?

    Allan Corduner is the best audio narrator I have ever listened to. He has the perfect voice to narrate this book. He uses the appropriate German accents when necessary, and characterizes each person in the story with unique sounds and vocal mannerisms, yet it is never jarring or over the top. He is fantastic!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tammy San Diego, CA, United States 03-16-13
    Tammy San Diego, CA, United States 03-16-13 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    4
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    "The most beautiful book I've ever read."
    Where does The Book Thief rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    #1


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Liesel; because you love her from the very first pages of the book to the very last pages of the book.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    When Papa first came to her room and played the accordian.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I loved the characters so much that I missed them for weeks after reading the book. It made me laugh and cry.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Vicki 03-12-13
    Vicki 03-12-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Now in my top 3 favorite books ever!"

    I truly enjoyed Death's perspective on the events of WWII Germany. The narrator's reading of this story brought it to life - upping the enjoyment level.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carl Vernal, UT, United States 03-11-13
    Carl Vernal, UT, United States 03-11-13 Member Since 2011
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    9
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    "Loved Loved Loved it."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would highly recommend this book. Better than most coming of age Stories. It was fantastic. The narration was great and the story Superb.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Book Thief?

    The memorable Moments were the characters, Max, Rosa, Rudy, and my Favorite Hans Huberman.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    So many good scenes. And death as the Narrator draws them up very poetically.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    Yes. I am not an emotional being particularly when it comes to film and literature. But this one did get to me.


    Any additional comments?

    Just a great book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jessica Shoop LEBANON, IN, US 03-05-13
    Jessica Shoop LEBANON, IN, US 03-05-13 Member Since 2009
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    "Love the Narration being from Death!"
    If you could sum up The Book Thief in three words, what would they be?

    Riveting, Thoughtful, Meaningful


    What did you like best about this story?

    I like that Death tells the story, but also that it teaches a lesson and the heartache involved with the time and place the story is told.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Barbara 02-24-13
    Barbara 02-24-13

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "GREAT STORY!!!"
    What did you love best about The Book Thief?

    The reader was great! The story, the protagonist, the reader: I loved them all!


    What did you like best about this story?

    The grim reaper's thoughts throughout the whole book. There were many times when he spoke of carting people away, how tired he was, or how tenderly he cradled them, beautiful writing.


    Have you listened to any of Allan Corduner’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No, unfortunately I have not.


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

    Not possible. Long and emotional; but I would say to get it; listen to it for one sitting and you will be hooked.


    Any additional comments?

    LISTEN TO THIS BOOK, if you want an original story that is beautifully written, a wonderful reader, and most of all characters that will make you laugh and break your heart. I have read this book, but oh so glad I listen to it. I did cry several, well more than several times, so be careful if you are driving and listening. I will also add, my husband reads SF and Mysteries, and he enjoyed the story but it was not his favorite, so some people might not enjoy it. But I would say give it a try because if you like it...you will LOVE IT!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    molly United States 02-22-13
    molly United States 02-22-13 Member Since 2014
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    "Fantastic book, enchantingly read!"
    Any additional comments?

    This book is written with the combination of wonderfully unique narration and dialogue that is alternately comic and poignant. A new take on the story of many of the those who lived through the horrors of the Third Reich. Enriching characters to whom one becomes attached whole-heartedly, and well described settings, make this a "must listen". If a book can be described as both heartbreaking and uplifting, this is it. Starts a bit slow, but do not give up on this book!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas CODY, WY, United States 02-19-13
    Thomas CODY, WY, United States 02-19-13 Member Since 2015
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    "My favorite audiobook ever!"
    Would you listen to The Book Thief again? Why?

    Yes, this was a great book and very well read. Appropriate for younger as well as older audiences. My 11 and 13 year olds loved it, and it's hard to find something we all agree on.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    forever listening 02-19-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Haunting"

    The senselessness of war devastates me and none more completely than WWII. So, once I became an adult, I avoided the subject completely. I purchased this book for my library months ago but kept passing it over for lighter, more mundane (happy happy happy) novels. Then some of my more intellectual family visited and I didn't want to be caught out with my sappy escapist listens. However these stars aligned, I'll be forever grateful. This book will stay with me forever. The performance could not have been better and I do believe the life given to the characters by the voice of Allan Corduner made each come alive for me in ways not possible if I would've read it. I fell in love with all the main characters. I'm now in mourning for them...and for we humans who keep creating events that underwrite like sorrows. All that said, it shows that beauty, love & resilience somehow survive.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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