The Book Thief

Posted at Jun 17, 2009 2:11 pm

I believe The Book Thief deserves its own post. Actually, if I was to post about nothing else for the next year, it would still not be enough.  Every so often I stumble upon an author whose writing so astonishes me that I do not know how to express my admiration. 

Markus Zusak obviously loves words and he uses each one as if it was a little rare jewel. In many of his descriptions he picks adjectives for their "color" rather than their meaning.  Or because they sound right in that particular phrase, or because the music of the word evokes a certain feeling. The effect is breath-taking.   Oh, and the novel is narrated by Death.  As in– the angel of Death.  And he actually makes that work.

In summary: The Book Thief is a novel which glorifies the written word.  That is the highest praise which I can give. 
(I admit that I hate it when I read commentary like that on book covers or in reviews. In Foer’s novel one of the quotes was "This book is life-changing…" or something equally irritating. I have never read a life changing book. Ever. If a book changes your life, you probably weren’t so interesting to begin with.)  

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