Overview & Rating
A riveting, wholesome tail following Liesel who is unfortunately born during a Nazi Germany era. Though she lives in a city outside of Germany, we see how the Nazi movement slowly forced the dissemination of their beliefs throughout Germany. We see how her love of books helps her survive, thrive, and guide her sense of purpose.
I picked up this New York Times Bestseller because I was curious how the title could correlate to Nazi Germany. I was expecting it to be a very dark, horrifying and depressing book similar to many stories regarding the Holocaust that I’ve read in the past. Though the novel is indeed jarring, it takes on a whole new approach to telling the horrific story of Germany’s dark and sinful era.
The novel is narrated by none other than Death himself. He uses poems to assist in narrating the tale and tells the story through an observers eyes. Although he recalls this time period as extremely busy for him, he is captivated by one girl that he keeps encountering throughout his journey through Germany. He observes this remarkable young girl, Liesel Meminger, who gets adopted by a lower working class family in Molching, Germany. Though we never find ourselves as readers at a concentration camp or in the center of the calamity, we stay in Molching and see how the Nazi outreach slowly creeps and seeps into to the outskirts of Munich and how it impacts the life of a young girl.
Liesel Meminger is the book thief and through her love of books she finds a release, a sense of purpose, a friend, and an escape. The Book Thief tells the tale of this struggling family in Molching and how their beliefs and values are tested. Though the foster-mother is a harsh, tough-love kind of woman as readers we still learn to like her. The foster-father is the love and light that strengthens and adores Liesel.
I don’t want to give too much of this book away because I found myself so charmed by the plot. I was at first very hesitant on the style it is written in, but you learn to appreciate and enjoy it. I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for a good read. Though it is a rough time in Germany, the underlying themes of love, friendship, caring, and faith make the book enjoyable and engaging.