Interest LevelReading LevelReading A-ZATOSWord Count
Grades 9 - 12Grades 3 - 6Z+5.1118933

The extraordinary #1 New York Times bestseller that is now a major motion picture, Markus Zusak's unforgettable story is about the ability of books to feed the soul.

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who 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.

In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak, author of I Am the Messenger, has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.

Paperback, 592 pages
Published on September 11, 2007 by Alfred A. Knopf
ISBN-10: 0375842209
ISBN-13: 9780375842207
103 Book Reviews
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  • olympus
    olympusThursday, May 21, 2020 at 11:57 am55 stars
    “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak is an interesting novel. Liesl is an orphan living with her foster parents in Germany. When a boy named Max enters Liesel’s life running from the Nazis, An inspiring part happens. This is when she and Max are together where they are is a warm and cozy place. When they are apart the cellar is dark and gloomy, in Max's perspective. This is inspiring because it shows the importance of being together in hard times. I’ve learned that just because you've lost everything to people, in this case the Nazis, doesn’t mean someone else can’t refill your life. I connect with this book on a small scale because I've made big mistakes and someone’s come along and fixed my mistake. Like, when I broke my grandfather's bird house, he came home and told me that he’d fix it for me. Therefore; this is an inspiring novel to me. The main character, Liesl, in The Book Thief changes a lot over the book. This is true because when Liesel enters the story she is nervous and scared, like when she was terrified to take the book on the ground in front of her when her brother is being buried by her friends. She becomes braver and more risky when she finishes her first book and wants more. Then when she builds up the courage to go to the mayor's house when she's invited she marvels at the library. Later in the town square she steals a book caled The Shoulder Shrug from a Nazi book burning. This shows that she wants more books and is willing to take a huge risk to get them. Many years later WWII ends this allows her to access the books she wants and allows her to calm down her life. She has a family and dies calmly of old age, ending the book. She started out as a nervous little girl and ends as a calm old woman, the book thief Liesl therefore; changes a lot.
    • lemonmilk
      lemonmilkWednesday, June 26, 2019 at 12:10 pm55 stars
      By far, this is the best book I have ever read. The way Markus Zusak creates his characters is astounding. Death as a narrator adds depth and emotion to the story that is not found in many other books. Zusak made each character’s story unique in its own way, crafting differing quirks and personality traits for each character. He also chose a great setting for a story, a time where the world was torn in war. The Book Thief has many pages where it made me want to read and read forever. Zusak has added so much emotion to this book, wether it be happiness, thankfulness, sadness, or anger. I think this novel is for kids aged 12+ (10+ for mature readers), because there is some light cussing, but no words that are very bad. I love this book, and I think it will be a classic for years to come.
      • sassylettuce32Friday, May 17, 2019 at 8:25 am
        Such a good book! I couldn't stop reading it!
        • mrgrasshopper
          mrgrasshopperMonday, April 15, 2019 at 2:40 pm55 stars
          One of the best books I've ever read. I've always adored Markus Zusak's novels, they are perfectly written. Though, it is way above my league; not my grade at all. 9-12 grade, as I am only a fourth grade grasshopper. Total recommend it to the more advanced readers out there, especially if history is your thing (like me, haha).
          • hiTuesday, April 9, 2019 at 11:35 am
            This was good
            • misaalana
              misaalanaTuesday, March 26, 2019 at 3:31 pm55 stars
              Best book EVER!!! Thrilling, heartbreaking, FANTASTIC!!
              • lightninggirl
                lightninggirlTuesday, January 29, 2019 at 11:23 am55 stars
                Very well written! I recommend it for readers.
                • gabriana77
                  gabriana77Saturday, January 5, 2019 at 12:58 pm55 stars
                  I love this book, and the movie they are both so great!
                  • georgiasilver
                    georgiasilverMonday, August 20, 2018 at 2:44 pm55 starsFeatured
                    The Book Thief is an extremely well written book with elaborate figurative language and descriptive settings. I really enjoyed the metaphors and diction that made reading the book very colorful and unique; it seemed as if all the scenes were vividly painted through words. Taking place in Munich, Germany, the book leads the reader through the life of Liesel Meminger. The book illustrates the hard life that Liesel must live as her family's situation gets worse and worse. She has to battle her personal problems of constant nightmares that haunt her every night, as well as keeping their secret of a Jew living in the basement of their home. Terror and poverty is a constant through her every day life, and she has to endure it. But the book also shows the small joys in her life: how she connects with Max, her foster father's accordion, and Rudy, a loyal friend that is by her side all throughout the book, as well as the books and writing. This book really allows the reader to absorb what is happening, and read about the complexities of each character and their actions/consequences. This is a very powerful and extraordinary book that I recommend everyone to read.
                    • epringles23
                      epringles23Saturday, January 27, 2018 at 3:01 pm
                      Sounds so good! Deffinitely on my list of books! Added to my wish list!