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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

Critic Reviews

  • 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 Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    12,307
  • 4 Stars
    3,795
  • 3 Stars
    1,253
  • 2 Stars
    334
  • 1 Stars
    303

Performance

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    11,550
  • 4 Stars
    2,592
  • 3 Stars
    688
  • 2 Stars
    172
  • 1 Stars
    197

Story

  • 4.6 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    10,738
  • 4 Stars
    2,948
  • 3 Stars
    1,043
  • 2 Stars
    282
  • 1 Stars
    234
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

well read, well written

What did you love best about The Book Thief?

The reader did a marvelous job capturing the essence of both the narrator and characters

What did you like best about this story?

the poetic, vivid language

What does Allan Corduner bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He brought the characters to life, German pronunciations were spot on.

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

Rudy - he's a great kid and he's always hungry

Any additional comments?

Highly recommend

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Captivating

If you love WWII era stories (historical fiction), then this is for you! Emotionally riveting, this story will transport you back to the early 1940s as you learn about the struggle head and heart for a young girl and her family during the Nazi reign in Germany.

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  • Performance
  • Story

Amazing!

loved loved loved the story as well as the narrorator. can't think of a better narrator for any story that was better than this match.

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  • Story

It gripped me!

Pretty amazing plot. I love the fact that you have to pay attention to little details in order to understand other references. The descriptions of the author are quite moving; I felt I was there watching or doing. I must own the hand copy now.

  • Overall

Amazing. Beautiful text, even better narration.

I can't recommend this book highly enough. A gorgeous journey through a painful, hopeful, and altogether human story.

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  • Story

Exquisite!

I loved this book. It was so well written and you won't want to stop listening. I loved the authors descriptions and vocabulary, the narrators voices, and all or the characters...but one.

  • Overall
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  • Story

Wonderful

I loved everything about this book it was wonderful and full of suspense . I truly enjoyed it!

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Magnificent!

I had to read this book for class, but if I was informed about this book beforehand, I would have read it as soon as I could.
The narrator did a wonderful job with each of the characters voices and verbal descriptions of their personalities and the author was phenomenal at writing this novel. Very well put together; 10/10 would recommend.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Susan
  • Allentown, Panama
  • 12-13-16

Worth reading and rereading!

This book is a masterpiece. I have listened to it, read it and watched the movie. The audio book is the best experience of the three.

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  • Performance
  • Story

A must "read"

An unbelievably beautiful and sad story. You know what you're getting into reading a story about Nazi Germany, but Zusak helps you through with humor and tender moments of humanity at its best.