Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Book Thief

I LOVED this book! I'm not a huge fan of historical fiction, but this novel is so much more than that...this is the story of a young girl, Liesel Meminger. Liesel's mother must put her in foster care because she is unable to care for Liesel and her younger brother. On the train to her new home, Liesel's brother dies leading to her first encounter with Death, the narrator of this story. Liesel steals a book from her brother's gravesite, but is unable to read it.
Liesel is introduced to her new family and after some time, she adjusts to life with the Hubermanns. However, she is plagued with nightmares. When she awakens in tears, her foster father is there to comfort her. They begin midnight reading lessons to help Liesel catch up to her classmates. She becomes obsessed with books and words (love her!).
As tensions rise during World War II, the Hubermanns get a strange visitor. Max, a Jewish man, asks for their help and they decide to hide him in their basement. Although they are very poor, the family is mostly happy until one fateful day when Hans Hubermann tries to help a Jewish prisoner on the way to Dachau, the local concentration camp. This is a must read! It is about friendship, family, death, survival, war, and much, much more. I highly recommend this!