The Book Thief The Book Thief question

Why was Rudy's death essential ?

I think the point is that Rudy's death WASN'T essential. He was completely an innocent bystander, as were all the Himmel Street occupants. That's the tragedy-- Rudy shouldn't have died. Not in that way. No one who lived on Himmel Street should have died that way. It's a pure and simple tragedy involving the loss of a young life.

Christal Horton I 100% agree. It's what makes the book (and history) so tragic. ...more
Feb 14, 2018 06:17AM · flag

I think it was essential, although it was very sad. Markus wanted to show us all the innocent people that died because of the Holocaust. Rudy was full of life. Even Death admitted that Rudy being killed was a "robbery". And I'm glad Markus was able to show us his message through a beautiful story and an amazingly-written ending.

This book was meant to be told in that time spectrum. The bombings happened and innocent people died. That was portrayed in the book by Rudy, and everyone else, dying.

I definitely enjoyed reading it, you’re a great author.


I think it was essential in the story. Even though all the people living in that neighborhood were pretty innocent, the bombers didn't care. In WW II, no one really cared who got killed because that was just war, I guess. Anyway, it also made a good twist in the story. I thought Rudy's death was heartbreaking and I was a little sad to see him go because he was so innocent. It's those little emotional moments in books like Rudy's death that make a book good and to also look at things like the war from a different perspective. It's like seeing how scary the war was and continues to be today because of how ruthless the nazis and Hitler was.

Oursainsbury (last edited Nov 04, 2021 11:37PM ) Nov 02, 2021 01:51AM   0 votes
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That's exactly the point. Rudy didn't need to die. Nobody on Himmel Street needed to die. I think that the author was making a point that in times of war, so many lives are lost, even innocent lives. Even when it isn't necessary.

His death shows the horror and unfairness of war. And the unecessity of war. I don't think the death of all those millions of people in WWII was essential. Or in any other wars. Human lives should not be lost for gaining power or land. I wish we could all live in peace.

I hated how he died too, in fact, i cried both in the movie and in the book when it happened. I think he did it because it showed how Liesel had changed, it showed what terrible things were happening in that time. It showed that even kids died. The way Liesel changed, was a major point for this book. I think that in order for a lot of the things to happen in her later life, and the way her life was shaped after that, Rudy had to die.
Ales Steiner had just come home from the army, its not the his fault that Rudy died.

it wasn't essential... it was sad and cruel. I cried so hard, I loved little Rudy<3

As extremely sad as it was, I do think it was essential to show how just one decision can change life in a major way; and that theme showed up often towards the end of the book. If Alex had made on decision differently, Rudy would have been the only one to survive. If Hans had decided not to change his seat in the truck, he would have died out there and never came home. If Liesel hadn't decided to write that night, she wouldn't have been in the basement and survived the bomb. Everything hinged on one decision that never seemed like a life-changing moment at the time.

P Feb 03, 2018 03:03AM   0 votes
Rudy is synonymous of every innocent person who falls prey to the brutality of the insanity of a few led by some egoist insensitive political leader the world! If the question is the 'necessity' of someone dying....then the very question is unreasonable! Coz...actually where at all is the necessity of war?? And definitely, life is all about the choice one makes...consciously or otherwise! An after though of ifs and buts is the easiest thing to indulge in...most often with regret!
Fortunately the movie is as well directed, edited and enacted as the book is riveting!

Every war comes with its share of innocent deaths. It does not matter if by bombs or by concentration camps. Rudy's death and bombing of Himmel Street is symbolic to emphasise the same. In the book it is mentioned that Himmel Street (meaning Heaven Street) was accidentally bombed instead of the downtown Munich, an error probably due to the name

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