The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I just closed this book, dried my eyes and blew my nose, and still haven’t caught my breath… Ouch. War and death, pain and beauty. Life’s worst and best in an ugly-beautiful stew.
Despite having heard the accolades, I didn’t want to read it. When I finally picked it up, I almost set it down again upon realizing just Who would narrate these 500+ pages. I gave him a chance and now I feel a little sorry for him. Compassion for Death… a good story can make almost anything into a possibility.
“The best word shakers were the ones who understood the true power of words. They were the ones who could climb the highest. One such word shaker was a small, skinny girl. She was renowned as the best word shaker of her region because she knew how powerless a person could be WITHOUT words” (446).
“I have hated the words and
I have loved them,
and I hope I have made them right” (528).
“His soul sat up. It met me. Those kinds of souls always do – the best ones. The ones who rise up and say, ‘I know who you are and I am ready. Not that I want to go, of course, but I will come'” (531-532).
And from the author’s interview: “I like the idea that every page in every book can have a gem on it. It’s probably what I love most about writing – that words can be used in a way that’s like a child playing in a sandpit, rearranging things, swapping them around. They’re the best moments in a day of writing – when an image appears that you didn’t know would be there when you started work in the morning” (11).