Mounica's Reviews > The Book Thief

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
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Feb 21, 2009

it was amazing
bookshelves: luuvvved-it, historical-fiction, absolute-favorites
Recommended for: everyone

*sniff* I finished this book crying silently. It is truly amazing, so incredible, the best historical fiction I've ever read, the best book I read this year...I don't know what to say except that if you haven't read it yet, you MUST read it.
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Quotes Mounica Liked

Markus Zusak
“I have hated words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Son, you can't go around painting yourself black, you hear?"
"Why not, Papa?"
"Because they'll take you away."
"Why?"
"Because you shouldn't want to be like black people or Jewish people or anyone who is...not us."
"Who are Jewish people?"
"You know my oldest customer, Mr. Kaufmann? Where we bought your shoes?"
"Yes."
"Well, he's Jewish."
"I didn't know that. Do you have to pay to be Jewish? Do you need a license?"
.....
"...you've got beautiful blond hair and big safe blue eyes. You should be happy with that; is that clear?”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“...one opportunity leads directly to another, just as risk leads to more risk, life to more life, and death to more death.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Like most misery, it started with apparent happiness.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The only thing worse than a boy who hates you: a boy that loves you.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“It kills me sometimes, how people die.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The Germans in basements were pitiable, surely, but at least they had a chance. That basement was not a washroom. They were not sent there for a shower. For those people, life was still achievable.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“in the trees this afternoon, he was a giver of bread and teddy bears.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I want words at my funeral. But I guess that means you need life in your life.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Usually we walk around constantly believing ourselves. "I'm okay" we say. "I'm alright". But sometimes the truth arrives on you and you can't get it off. That's when you realize that sometimes it isn't even an answer--it's a question. Even now, I wonder how much of my life is convinced.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I am haunted by humans.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Her teeth were like a soccer crowd, crammed in.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I wanted to tell the book thief many things, about beauty and brutality. But what could I tell her about those things that she didn't already know? I wanted to explain that I am constantly overestimating and underestimating the human race-that rarely do I ever simply estimate it. I wanted to ask her how the same thing could be so ugly and so glorious, and its words and stories so damning and brilliant.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Humans, if nothing else, have the good sense to die.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Often I wish this would all be over, Liesel, but then somehow you do something like walk down the basement steps with a snowman in your hands.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“A halo surrounded the grim reaper nun, Sister Maria. (By the way-I like this human idea of the grim reaper. I like the scythe. It amuses me.)”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“It was a year for the ages, like 79, like 1346, to name just a few. Forget the scythe, Goddamn it, I needed a broom or a mop. And I needed a vacation. ”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The day was gray, the color of Europe.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Each night, Liesel would step outside, wipe the door, and watch the sky. Usually it was like spillage - cold and heavy, slippery and gray - but once in a while some stars had the nerve to rise and float, if only for a few minutes. On those nights, she would stay a little longer and wait.

Hello, stars.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I only know that all of those people would have sensed me that night, excluding the youngest of the children. I was the suggestion. I was the advice, my imagined feet walking into the kitchen and down the corridor.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“It was Russia, January 5, 1943, and just another icy day. Out among the city and snow, there were dead Russians and Germans everywhere. Those who remained were firing into the blank pages in front of them. Three languages interwove. The Russian, the bullets, the German.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“She gave 'The Dream Carrier' to Max as if words alone could nourish him.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“He was the crazy one who had painted himself black and defeated the world.

She was the book thief without the words.

Trust me, though, the words were on their way, and when they arrived, Liesel would hold them in her hands like the clouds, and she would wring them out like rain.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“It’s a small story really, about, among other things:

* A girl
* Some words
* An accordionist
* Some fanatical Germans
* A Jewish fist fighter
* And quite a lot of thievery”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“She said it out loud, the words distributed into a room that was full of cold air and books. Books everywhere! Each wall was armed with overcrowded yet immaculate shelving. It was barely possible to see paintwork. There were all different styles and sizes of lettering on the spines of the black, the red, the gray, the every-colored books. It was one of the most beautiful things Liesel Meminger had ever seen.

With wonder, she smiled.

That such a room existed!”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Please believe me when I tell you that I picked up each soul that day as if it were newly born. I even kissed a few weary, poisoned cheeks. I listened to their last, gasping cries. Their vanishing words. I watched their love visions and freed them from their fear.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“After perhaps thirty meters, just as a soldier turned around, the girl was felled. Hands were clamped upon her from behind and the boy next door brought her down. He forced her knees to the road and suffered the penalty. He collected her punches as if they were presents. Her bony hands and elbows were accepted with nothing but a few short moans. He accumulated the loud, clumsy specks of saliva and tears as if they were lovely to his face, and more important, he was able to hold her down.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I carried [Rudy] softly through the broken street...with him I tried a little harder [at comforting]. I watched the contents of his soul for a moment and saw a black-painted boy calling the name Jesse Owens as he ran through an imaginary tape. I saw him hip-deep in some icy water, chasing a book, and I saw a boy lying in bed, imagining how a kiss would taste from his glorious next-door neighbor. He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It's his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“His soul sat up. It met me. Those kinds of souls always do - the best ones. The ones who rise up and say "I know who you are and I am ready. Not that I want to go, of course, but I will come." Those souls are always light because more of them have been put out. More of them have already found their way to other places.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“She leaned down and looked at his lifeless face and Leisel kissed her best friend, Rudy Steiner, soft and true on his lips. He tasted dusty and sweet. He tasted like regret in the shadows of trees and in the glow of the anarchist's suit collection. She kissed him long and soft, and when she pulled herself away, she touched his mouth with her fingers...She did not say goodbye. She was incapable, and after a few more minutes at his side, she was able to tear herself from the ground. It amazes me what humans can do, even when streams are flowing down their faces and they stagger on...”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I am constantly overestimating and underestimating the human race - that rarely do I ever simply estimate it.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The words. Why did they have to exist? Without them, there wouldn't be any of this.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“How does it feel, anyway?"
How does what feel?"
When you take one of those books?"
At that moment, she chose to keep still. If he wants an answer, he'd have to come back, and he did. "Well?" he asked, but again, it was the boy who replied, before Liesel could even open her mouth.
It feels good, doesn't it? To steal something back.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Don't punish yourself,' she heard her say again, but there would be punishment and pain, and there would be happiness, too. That was writing.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Just be patient, she told herself, and with the mounting pages, the strength of her writing fist grew.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“A DEFINITION NOT FOUND
IN THE DICTIONARY
Not leaving: an act of trust and love,
often deciphered by children”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Clearly, I see it.
I was just about to leave when I found her kneeling there.
A mountain range of rubble was written, designed, erected around her. She was clucthing at a book.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“You cannot be afraid, Read the book. Smile at it. It's a great book-the greatest book you've ever read.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“She slid a book from the shelf and sat with it on the floor.
She tore a page from the book and ripped it in half. Then a chapter.
Soon, there was nothing but scraps of words lttered between her legs and all around her. The words. Why did they have to exist? Without them, there wouldn't be ant of this.
What good were the words?
The book thief stood and waled carefully to the library door.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“A snowball in the face is surely the perfect beginning to a lasting friendship.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Somewhere, far down, there was an itch in his heart, but he made it a point not to scratch it. He was afraid of what might come leaking out.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Of course, I'm being rude. I'm spoiling the ending, not only of the entire book, but of this particular piece of it. I have given you two events in advance, because I don't have much interest in building mystery. Mystery bores me. It chores me. I know what happens and so do you. It's the machinations that wheel us there that aggravate, perplex, interest, and astound me. There are many things to think of. There is much story.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Humans have a talent for escalation.
-Death”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Can a person steal happiness? Or is just another internal, infernal human trick?”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The consequence of this is that I'm always finding humans at their best and worst. I see their ugly and their beauty, and I wonder how the same thing can be both. (Death)”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“They were French, they were Jews, and they were you.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“It's a lot easier, she realized, to be on the verge of something than to actually be it. This would still take time.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“I could introduce myself properly, but it's not really necessary. You will know me well enough and soon enough, depending on a diverse range of variables. It suffices to say that at some point in time, I will be standing over you, as genially as possible. Your soul will be in my arms. A color will be perched on my shoulder. I will carry you gently away.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“The point is, Ilsa Hermann had decided to make suffering her triumph. When it refused to let go of her, she succumbed to it. She embraced it. ”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Markus Zusak
“Imagine smiling after a slap in the face. Then think of doing it twenty-four hours a day.”
Markus Zusak, The Book Thief


Reading Progress

02/19/2009 page 1
0.18% "I've heard some great things about this book and I'm excited to read it!"
02/19/2009 page 98
17.75% "Totally into the story! OMG! So good!"
02/20/2009 page 262
47.46% "MUST. READ. MORE."
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message 1: by Mounica (last edited Feb 21, 2009 02:25PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mounica Yes, I did enjoy it! It was so good! ...That's not even the right word for it. ;)


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