Arts & CultureFamily & Education

The Book Thief provides insight into what happens when we die

Beatrice Cosgrove, reviewer
What happens when we die? 
That is the question we have asked ourselves for centuries. There are many, many answers to that query. Beliefs, thoughts, feelings, and experiences surround those replies, but Markus Zusak’s The Book Thief provides insight into one of those answers through its narrator: Death itself. 
After she is put into the care of her foster parents Rosa and Hans Hubermann, nothing is the same for Liesel Meminger. The future is a puzzle with nearly all its pieces missing But, things begin to shift after Liesel and Hans form a bond through books and words. As the story progresses, Liesel finds herself beautifully encapsulated in literature, while still surrounded by the horrific circumstances of World War II. Liesel and her Himmel Street friend Rudy forge a friendship that will warm your heart and move you to tears as they both navigate their lives in the turbulent times of the 1930s and ‘40s. 
This book is raw, inspiring, and passionate, it gives you the chance to form personal bonds with the characters and really feel their emotions. Death as the narrator is a genius move by Zusak, and the idea was executed magnificently. Death does give insight into future events, which made me slightly wary, but all in all, it was a risk for Zusak that turned out much better than expected. Diving into this book, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but as I got deeper, it turned into a profound and exquisitely written novel that captured my heart and gave me more understanding of World War II life than any other book. I will admit, I cried (which I don’t usually do!) and was actually really sad to finish the book. This book is worth a read, I recommend it to ages 12 and older. 

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