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The Book Thief
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ARCHIVED > Quarterly Book Discussion "The Book Thief" Question #4: Why do you think Liesel is obsessed with stealing books?

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Julie (julie_prewett) Question #4


Kelsey There are a lot of answers to this! The first book she steals, The Grave Digger's Hand Book, hearkens back to the last time she saw her mother and her brother. She keeps it in memory of that. She is also illiterate in the first part of the book, and uses the books she steals to learn how to read and write. She also has to steal them because she has no money. She wants to learn, and that's really the only way she CAN learn.

She also steals from the Nazi's because they took away her family, she steals from Ilsa because she's mad at her for firing her mother, and for being, in Liesel's words, pathetic. Stealing books, for Liesel, is a kind of rebellion. In part, I also think it's to show off for Rudy a bit, even though she doesn't realize her feelings for him until later.


Julie (julie_prewett) I feel she might be stealing the books because its the only thing she can control in her life right now. I am probably totally off base, but its maybe right?!?! Lol


Julie (julie_prewett) Kelsey wrote: "There are a lot of answers to this! The first book she steals, The Grave Digger's Hand Book, hearkens back to the last time she saw her mother and her brother. She keeps it in memory of that. She i..."

Your answer is much better than mine. I agree with you smart lady!! :-)


Kelsey Julie wrote: "Kelsey wrote: "There are a lot of answers to this! The first book she steals, The Grave Digger's Hand Book, hearkens back to the last time she saw her mother and her brother. She keeps it in memory..."

Oh, thanks! But I also agree with what you said! Liesel definitely has almost no control in her life, and stealing absolutely gives her some of the feeling back.


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