Genre: World War 2, Young Adult, Germany
In my family, I'm famous for reading the spoilers for movies and even occasionally some books . In a moment of suspense at whatever movie we might be attending, my husband can always turn to me when the tension gets to be just too much and ask me how things are going to turn out because he knows that I've read the spoiler. Why would I do this you might ask? To protect myself from caring too much. My theory has always been that if I know things are going to turn out badly I won't get too attached to the characters.
Imagine my surprise when The Book Thief destroyed all of my carefully laid plans. Since the book, which takes place in Nazi Germany, is narrated by Death it isn't giving away too much to say that I knew things couldn't possibly turn out happily for Liesel Meminger, the book thief. Death himself even gives us very broad and specific hints at what lies in store for Liesel, and those she cares about throughout the book. Despite all this, I fell hard for almost each and every character in this book. I actually found myself wiping away a few tears as I finished the last few pages. I've been reading a lot of great books lately, but this one really stands out as an amazing read.
The story is that of Liesel Meminger, a young German girl who we meet just prior to the rise of power of the Nazi party. Liesel is sent to live with some foster parents, Hans and Rosa Hubermann, who live on Himmel street, just outside of Munich. Liesel has lost everything; and is haunted especially by the death of her brother which she witnessed. Somehow, she finds comfort in words and books, despite her inability to read. Hans, her amazing foster father, teaches her to read. This love of books, especially stolen ones, becomes Liesel's salvation, and her means of survival as her nation goes up in flames.
I honestly can't say too many wonderful things about this book. I honestly loved everything about it. The characters are so wonderful, so amazing, so imperfectly human, and the story will inspire you and break your heart all at the same time.