Wednesday, 21 March 2012

The Book Thief

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.

If you ever have a sinus infection and need a good cleanse, simply read this book. By the end, you'll be bawling so hard that you'll wring out every last drop.

Apart from leaving me sobbing uncontrollably in the end, this book also made me laugh, cringe at times, and reminded me that - like Liesel - there's nothing else that can pick me up and transport me, unceremoniously, like a book. It need not be long, overly fraught with deep meaning, or even a good book... Each book is a meal, and I'm simply a literary glutton.

A big 5 out of 5. Just remember to have your Kleenex handy. You'll need it.

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