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Synopsis

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.


From the Hardcover edition.

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Book Reviews

The Book Thief
Average rating
4.4 / 5
Book thief
January 15th, 2016
Great read. The story of a young girls passion for books and a certain fella set during the war. Underlying stories and plots will keep you guessing. Enjoy!
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1 review
Not for me!
October 14th, 2015
I have tried reading this book at least 5 times. Not sure whether it's the author's style of writing or the subject matter; but I could not slough through this one at all.
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1 review
A touching story
October 10th, 2015
I've spent a year and a half reading this book, and thoroughly enjoyed it. Himmel street came vividly to life with every page I turned, and through the lens of childhood it almost became a second home. There are glimpses of happiness in Leisel Meminger's life between lives, and although the reader is careful not to expect happy endings, the final blow is still delivered with a semblance of kindness. The central theme of the book is eventually presented with almost childlike clarity. I hope you enjoy navigating this story just as much as I did.
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1 review
Well written and touching
August 23rd, 2015
You won't find many books told from such an interesting point of view. Well written, touching, great descriptions. This book will stay with me for a long time. I am recommending it to my children.
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1 review
So beautifully written
April 12th, 2015
One of the most compelling books I've read in a long time. Love the use of metaphors used by the narrator.
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1 review
The Book Thief
February 23rd, 2015
Interesting read. Author picked an odd narrator but made him almost human. I read it for a January book club. Not the right book for a depressing month but otherwise worthwhile.
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1 review
wow!
February 23rd, 2015
Wow, this book is told by Death, the narrator. I admit it confused me a little for the first few pages but once I wrapped my head around that I could not put it down. It was not really a story about books or stealing. That was a small part of it. It was about a young girl's childhood and different relationships with people during WW2 in Germany. Thumbs up; give it a read!
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1 review
Excellent
January 31st, 2015
Well written! Enjoyable! The characters are well developed. Death narrating gives a interesting perspective!
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1 review
The book thief
January 27th, 2015
Having seen and been moved by the movie,it wAs with some fear that I chose to read the book. how wrong I was and how glad.......this is a fabulous,funny,tender and moving story of youth and love, of the horrors of war and the absolute joy and power of the written word. I will read it again and insist that my friends do too. This is the best book I have read in a long long time.
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1 review
Oh the beauty of words!
December 22nd, 2014
Perhaps because I learned to speak a second language years ago that I felt a strong connection with the power of words experienced by Liesel. There is a beautiful sadness to this story and a painful truth about love.
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1 review
The Book Thief
October 29th, 2014
Pretty good book. Sometimes hard to understand and sometimes hard to put down.
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1 review
Amazing
October 7th, 2014
This book was moving, inspirational and educational. I will recommend it to all readers above 12.♥♥♥
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1 review
The Book Thief
September 27th, 2014
Very close to the movie, a very good read! Please never let this happen again!
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1 review
Excellent
September 15th, 2014
Refreshing new perspective on world war 2, loved it
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1 review
Great
September 13th, 2014
Liked so much more than the movie
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1 review
The Book Thief
August 27th, 2014
What a story, Death pulls you in and keeps you wanting more!Through tears, envisioning what my parents must of suffered as young children in Hamburg. A must read.
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1 review
The book thief stole my heart
August 14th, 2014
Moving and creatively written.
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1 review
The book thief
August 12th, 2014
Well written could not put it down
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1 review
3 of 3 people found this helpful
Great read
August 9th, 2014
Very sad story during a horrific time in our history. It is a tragedy what human beings are capable of doing to their fellow brothers and sisters
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
Thought provoking...
July 30th, 2014
Love the way this is written, the phrases and word choice juxtaposition are delightful, even if the subject matter and the worlds of this read are very sad.
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
wow
June 30th, 2014
this is hands down the best book I have ever read. the metaphors that the authour uses are so beautiful and alluring and the characters are loveable and extremely well developped. you`re going to fall in love with this book I promise <3
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1 review
The book thief
June 26th, 2014
This is a wonderful book. One I hated to put down.
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
The Book Theif
June 17th, 2014
Great!!! Learned a lot!!!
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1 review
The Book Thief
June 7th, 2014
I have read this book three times and I never fail to cry at the end. It's the first book that has ever touched me and made me cry. THE FEELS
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2 reviews
The Book Thief
June 7th, 2014
I have read this book three times and I never fail to cry at the end. It's the first book that has ever touched me and made me cry. THE FEELS
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2 reviews
The book thief
June 3rd, 2014
An amazing book . An amazing story line . Wil surely touch evrybodies hearts !
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1 review
Death rants beautifully
April 22nd, 2014
A poetic, compelling, modern story of Holocaust history that will burrow softly but deeply into your core. And stay.
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1 review
Book theif
April 19th, 2014
Captivating. A truly original voice that drew you in and kept you there. A whole new look at the war.
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1 review
A story between the tales
April 16th, 2014
An emotional story w fabulous characters. The period feels authentic as seen through a kids eyes.
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1 review
Great Book!
April 16th, 2014
I love this author's use of metaphors, and the writing from the perspective of death as a living being. Great read, the characters seem so real, the story line flows well and its definitely a have-to-read book.
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1 review
The book thief
April 5th, 2014
So beautifully written. I'd highly recommend it.
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2 reviews
The book thief
April 5th, 2014
So beautifully written. I'd highly recommend it.
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2 reviews
Heartbreaking..
March 29th, 2014
Definitely would recommend this book. So sad, but its beautiful.
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1 review
The Book Thief
March 11th, 2014
Heart wrenching to the end!
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1 review
The Book Thief
March 4th, 2014
Amazing book! My new 2nd best author. Can 't beat Stephen King
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1 review
Worth the effort
March 3rd, 2014
Although not the easiest book to get into it is worth the effort. Horribly sad but beautiful. Something everyone should read so that we never forget.
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1 review
The Book Thief
February 21st, 2014
I just want to start off by saying this: Who am I to give my opinion on someone's book? It's his creation, his work, his reflection. But I will anyways as I enjoyed it thoroughly and I feel as if it should be known. This is my favorite book. I don't even know what sparked an interest in me and turned me towards it, but I am glad that I read 'The Book Thief'. I enjoyed how it was in the perspective of death as it caused me to be critically challenged in thinking deep questions. (The book was perfect enough without those answers. I do not intend to discover the whys and the hows and so on. That is almost what I enjoy about your work - I don't know but I am still content with what you gave me.) This book is filled with poetry and painting pictures not only on walls but in your mind, too. Markus Zusak, you have a way with words that is unthinkable! You decided where and when and how to put the words so delicately with so much pleasure...I must say that you made a remarkable book and I am ecstatic to read your others. I hope that others read this book and love it as much as I do.
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1 review
The book thief
February 15th, 2014
I read this for a book club. I'm not sure I would have picked it up myself. Once I started it I had trouble putting it down. It is a different type of narration. And at times I disliked it. A story set in the days of World War II.
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1 review
The Book Thief
February 14th, 2014
One of the most amazing pieces of fiction I have had the pleasure of reading. Sad, gripping and funny all at once. As for the narrator ...well that I shall let you decide for yourself.
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1 review
Mind. Blown.
February 13th, 2014
Wow. Amazing book! Just read it!
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1 review
The Book Thief
February 13th, 2014
This book is one of those that is hard to describe. So much depth and emotion flows through these pages. Thank you Markus Zusak for such a beautiful masterpiece.
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1 review
The Book Thief
February 11th, 2014
A great read. I found myself up until the early hours of the morning reading, unable to put the book down. A very different view of Germany during the World Wars.
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
Remarkable
January 28th, 2014
It has been a long time since I have read a book that had both touched me and impressed me in the way this one has. The writing is remarkable and the character of Leisel is both believable and incredible. This is a book that everyone should read- it is accessible for young teen readers yet able to capture the hearts and minds of older readers as well. Although written from the perspective of death, it is not gratuitous or shockingly graphic. It is real, touching, uplifting and heart breaking. It does not cover or dress up the horrors of war, but places them in a role that allows life and hope to prevail.
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1 review
The book thief
January 28th, 2014
Amazingly beautiful. Words are precious. Thank you book thief gor sharing your emotions.
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1 review
The Book Thief
January 27th, 2014
The book thief it is amazing it made laugh and cry. Its definitely one of the best books I've ever read.
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1 review
The Book Thief
January 16th, 2014
World War 2 and Nazi Germany as seen and narrated by "Death" himself. The story of a young girl and those she loved and lost....
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1 review
Beautifully written
January 14th, 2014
It took me a while to get through this - it's not the easiest read and there are a lot of difficult moments but it is beautifully done and the story should be passed on, always.
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1 review
Incredible.
January 6th, 2014
Stayed up late many nights to keep reading.
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1 review
Excellent book
January 6th, 2014
I loved the book. Sad but the reality we many times don't want see.
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1 review
The Book Thief
January 5th, 2014
A wonderful book! Beautifully narrated in a twisted way.
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2 reviews
The Book Thief
January 5th, 2014
A wonderful book! Beautifully narrated in a twisted way.
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2 reviews
Fantastique!!
January 2nd, 2014
Presque lue d'un trait d'un couvert a l'autre (!) . Merveilleusement bien écrit... un chef d'œuvre !
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1 review
Haunting
December 22nd, 2013
This book left me with only one thought ... I am haunted by humans.
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1 review
Cheese
December 21st, 2013
Nice book don't like that Rudy died
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1 review
The Book Thief
December 20th, 2013
Excellent read. I was not sure I was going to like the book after the first couple of pages but I persevered and I think the book got better and better.
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1 review
The book thief
December 19th, 2013
What an amazing story of hero's, war life and death. A truly remarkable book
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1 review
The Book Thief
December 19th, 2013
Loved it loved it. What a great book. Now I can watch the movie
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1 review
The best book I have ever read!
December 15th, 2013
I have read a thousand books but none quite like this one. Each word was magical. The author is genious. The story itself was one told many times and many ways but never as magnificently as in this book. I loved every word.
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1 review
Fantastic
December 10th, 2013
This is my favourite book. I could read it over and over again. A truly inspiring story, and an amazing book.
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1 review
The Book Thief
December 7th, 2013
A haunting, never to be forgotten novel especially to those who lived through World War II.
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1 review
The Book Thief
December 6th, 2013
Simply amazing. It guts me every single time I read it.
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1 review
Beautiful
November 25th, 2013
What a beautiful story. I would highly recommend everyone read this at least once!
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1 review
Much more than a young adult book.
November 17th, 2013
This book was so much more than a young adult book. It uses language and a topic that are truly worthy of its subject. It humanizes a part of world history that many youth may not have even begun to contemplate. This book is truly worth the read and I think that the author should be applauded for his work.
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1 review
Excellent
October 18th, 2013
Was iffy at first, but I loved it. Now I'm mourning the fact that its finished. I find the author drew me in. Wonderful!
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
Get it now and read it!
September 5th, 2013
A truly remarkable masterpiece. This book does things with literature that I've never experienced. Terms like "modern classic" are cliche, but when they fit, they fit.
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2 reviews
1 person found this helpful
Get it now and read it!
September 5th, 2013
A truly remarkable masterpiece. This book does things with literature that I've never experienced. Terms like "modern classic" are cliche, but when they fit, they fit.
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2 reviews
1 person found this helpful
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
June 23rd, 2013
Thought provoking. Sad, uplifting, inspirational, and a great way to live through day to day life in Germany during World War 2 as seen through the eyes and life of a teen. Liesel is as memorable as Ann Frank.
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1 review
Beautiful novel
May 19th, 2013
So much love for this.
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1 review
Touching story
April 7th, 2013
This book was beautiful and for a novel considered junior lit. Highly mature and stark in its portrayal of WWll
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1 review
Good book
March 31st, 2013
Dont like reading but this is a good book it starts off a little boring to me but it gets better
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1 review
Fantastic
February 22nd, 2013
What a great book!
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1 review
Awesome
January 24th, 2013
Heart wrenching perspective
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1 review
by Markus Zusak
December 31st, 2012
This is obviously a very smart book. From the moment he walks into the room, the book has your attention. Somehow the way he loosens his tie relaxes you as well. His clever one-liner reaches out to offer a friendly handshake. His charm warms up beside you. He sips his tequila slowly, and that is how his made up stories distill into intoxication. Unknowingly, you drink the words one cup after another. Anyway, that is how you will meet "the book thief". You will wake up to find something stolen. Maybe it will be the cinder sky you kept in your pocket. "The book thief" loves that kind of distraction. Consider yourself warned.
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1 review

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