Cameron's Reviews > The Book Thief

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
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Oct 10, 13

bookshelves: reviewed, appalling-wastes-of-trees

In giving this book a one star rating, I don't mean to say that it's a bad book (It is, though. That's just not what I'm trying to say about it.) What I mean to say with this rating is that it's a bad book for me. It thrives off of tropes that, while executed very well, bug the hell outta me. However, someone else may take delight in the books characteristics, and judging by all the praise and critical acclaim this book has received, many someone else's obviously have taken delight in them. I, though, cannot review the book as one of those ones, unfortunately, as I am not one. Not even close.

Before we get to all the bad, there is one thing about this novel that I like and agree with. That one thing being the stance on words. The Book Thief and I are in total agreement that words are very very important things. However, how words are used and which ones are important are subjects of much disagreement. Perhaps it's a bit harsh to phrase it this way, but The Book Thief loves to employ useless words and phrases in its text. You need look no further than the first page to see examples of the flowery and meaningless descriptions that populate the book. I'm not sure if the text is there to make the book seem poetic or if it's supposed to add to the voice of the narrator, but it just doesn't work for me.

Speaking of the narrator, the idea to make Death seem sympathetic is actually a good one, I think. Trying to make Death sympathetic by turning him into a sarcastic "witty" storyteller, referencing insignificant details about already insignificant plot points but putting a joke in there so the reader doesn't think their time is being wasted, fails to bring about the desired result.

Confession time: I didn't finish the book. Now while that may invalidate my opinion to many, the fact that the style of writing was so bad that I quit the book despite the promising story says a lot. I can only take so much "poetry". Which I guess is the point of this review. If you like flowery, meaningless words added into sentences that would be better off without them and cockamamie similes that compare the sky to foods (among other things), then by all means, read this book. If not, then stay far away.

Wait, I just spent a whole review saying what was just as easily summarized in a few sentences. Oh no! I've become The Book Thief!

Crap.
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Reading Progress

10/10/2013 marked as: read

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