Saturday, February 24, 2007

The Book Thief by Zusak

I enjoyed this book, source of much controversy. But, I cannot think of many teens who would. Perhaps someone with great interest in history and the Holocaust. Liesel, started stealing books when she was just nine. She saw her brother die while on a train, going to a foster home. Stealing a book gave her comfort. She found such comfort many times over the years 1939-1943 or so. At the time she could not even read. Papa Hans, a kind compassionate man who loved the accordion would help her through that. Late at night after one more nightmare woke her, they would go to the basement and read and write on the basement walls and listen to and play the accordion. She became a great lover of words. She read to Mrs. Hermann who had a whole library from which to steal. She read in basements to frightened people with bombs falling outside while waiting all clear. And, she wrote her story. Its a story of small joys and great losses. Its the story of a gentile who helped hide a Jew, who stole food, who loved Rudy the blond haired friend who could run like Jesse Owens, Black Star of the Nazi Olympics and her foster parents Papa Hans and Mama Roza. It is narrated by death who should not have been following the life of the girl, he was kept busy enough collecting souls during the great war.

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