Violet's Reviews > I Am the Messenger

I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak
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Mar 13, 11

it was amazing
bookshelves: realistic-fiction, 5-stars, favorite-authors

** spoiler alert ** God, how I love this author! I know I've only read two of his books, but both of them have been so good, that I just can help but call him one of my favorite authors. Its just the style of his writing that I love and how can set the tone with a few simple words (ex: "The gunman is useless."). Its all so good....I mean this book isn't as powerful as The Book Thief, but it still is very good.

In the beginning, since they don't really say what town or city this is taking place in, you get the feeling that it could be Any-town, USA or whatever country. But after a while I felt like I was playing detective, in the way that I was picking up clues as to setting in words like "mate" and "Oi." Then I was pretty sure that it was taking place in the UK or Australia somewhere, but then he started talking about it being hot in October and that just nailed it: It was Australia! I know this isn't really relevant to the story, but I just want to comment about my detecting abilities. =P

Like with The Book Thief I could really see this book as a movie and how brilliant and beautiful this movie would be. I guess it has something to do with his style of writing and how amazingly visual it all is. I know literature and film are completely different mediums, but Markus Zusak's writing bridges the gap in the way that his books could be easily be transformed for the big screen.

I love how he makes all the characters 3 dimensional, meaning that they all have more than one side to them. They are practically all complicated people, which is exactly like your average human. Its makes the whole novel deeper. This is a human story. In fact all the stories, all the messages that Ed delivers are all human stories. What I mean by that is, that they are all tales of the human condition and the human spirit. They all exemplify what is brilliant, what is horrible about the human race. Its all so amazing in the simplistic way that he delivers them. So wonderfully magnificent that you really have to think to about them to get the entire impact of these simple yet deep messages.

Overall, that's what Markus Zusak seems to be really capable of: expressing the human. In both of the books that I've read, he's done that. Words are his medium and the human race, nature, and condition are his subjects. And he's just simply brilliant at it!

In fact the whole statement about the human race is actually stated in the book:
"Sometimes people are beautiful.
Not in looks.
Not in what they say.
Just in what they are."
(God how I love that quote!)

Ed...who or what is he? Is he a saint, a messenger, "just another stupid human," the "epitome of ordinariness," or really the message? Personally, I think he's a combination of them all. He's as normal as a penny on the street, yet he is able to do so many extraordinary things but still be normal at the same time. So I guess to sum him all up in two words you would have to say he's just another brilliant human. And really I guess that makes the final message or theme that "if a guy like [him] can stand up and do what [he] did, then maybe everyone can" true if you really think about it.

I like how we never got a true answer to who's behind everything. I mean, we meet the guy but we never really know who he is. There are many different possibilities to who he can be. He could be a cowardly rich guy with nothing else to do but live vicariously through the brilliant actions of Ed. He could be a rich guy that just wants to do something small, simple, and good. He could even be Markus Zusak what with the whole "Am I real?" and "He's written about this" stuff. Or he could be Ed himself in some weird psychological acid trip kind of way (and how its all about himself unconsciously wanting to better himself and others). But the thing is that one doesn't really know. Its an open-ended question that has many different answers. And that's what adds to the intrigue of the book. The thing with a good story is that a reader can get many different things out of it. So its no wonder that this is such a good book.

So I guess that's it! I'll probably check out the rest of his books...I don't know. But I do know that he is a simply magnificent author with a wonderfully beautiful writing style.
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Quotes Violet Liked

Markus Zusak
“Sometimes people are beautiful.
Not in looks.
Not in what they say.
Just in what they are.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“Maybe everyone can live beyond what they're capable of.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“I'm just another stupid human.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“You can kill a man with those words.
No gun.
No bullets.
Just words and a girl.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“Of course you're real-like any thought or any story. It's real when you're in it.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“What would you do if you were me? Tell me. Please tell me!
But you're far from this. Your fingers turn the strangeness of these pages that somehow connect my life to yours. Your eyes are safe. The story is just another few hundred pages of your mind. For me, it's here. It's now. I have to go through with this, considering the cost at every turn. Nothing will be the same.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger

Markus Zusak
“When he moves, a streetlight stabs him, and the words flow out like blood.”
Markus Zusak, I Am the Messenger


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