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Liesel and Max
Libby Libby Nov 11, 2011 08:29AM
My book club discussed this book last night and we all gave it 5 stars. The big discussion topic was whether or not Liesel and Max got married in the end. It was about 50/50. Any thoughts?

According to Markus Zusak:

They're all they had left, why wouldn't it be logical for them to pick up the pieces of their lives and start over together? When I read the book, I got the impression that max loved Liesel because she was the only bright spot in a life filled with agony. Sure, she was a little girl, but little girls grow up, and Liesel grew up into a woman who would be able to understand him better than most. Also, I hope they ended up together because they both deserve a little good in their lives.

We had this discussion at our book club last night as well, and it was also split. I think the age difference is not that big in the grand scheme of things.

But the main indicator for me that they did get married is the descriptions Death gives of the visions Liesel sees at the end of her life. He specifically mentions Mama, Papa, Rudy, etc., by name, but does not mention Max at all. He does, however, refer to a husband. It seems impossible that Max would be excluded from her visions, so I think that means the husband is Max. Great discussion topic, though!

Kristin I agree. I believe she married Max. Only because at the end, Death mentions all the people that passed through Liesel's mind when she died: her childr ...more
Nov 24, 2013 08:29PM · flag

i completely thought they had gotten married! i guess sometimes one just wants to create a comfort thought after reading such a sad ending. i was literally sobbing.

I admit I'm one of the readers who thought Liesel and Max got married, because of the scene towards the end where they meet again. Something about that scene just struck me as being more significant than a tearful emotional reunion.

No way to know... Saumensch.

I think it could be possible, but improbable. But I confess I caught myself thinking about this after I finished to read the book. We always tend to imagine what happen with the characters beyond the end. Probably it is an automatic thought, I don´t know. They survived, eventually, and it would be possible.

Thanks for sharing. I found a lot of interesting information here.

According to Markus Zusak:

I don't think Max and Liesel get married. This is my fav reason- "if Rudy couldn’t have Liesel, no-one from that world could. In my mind he was the one who loved her with the greatest intensity in that way, and I feel like it’s only fitting that we have to leave that world for her to find a different life, and all that comes with it."

10 years isn't that nuch!

I always hoped they did. And the age difference wasn't that much. He was in his twenties and she was in her early teens. Later in life they might've. I would like to think they did. This is one of the things I would love to ask Markus Zusak about.

I really doubt that she married Max. for one, he was much older than her and he watched her grow up and that would make marriage awkward. Also, he was very much like a brother to her because she lost her real brother and I think Max made up for that. i believe they were very good friends and loved each other, but in the way a brother loves a sister.

I think not for many of the same reasons others have stated here. Why not Alex? or someone we've never met? Seems more logical somehow.

Do you think Zusak left us with this question on purpose?

I see nothing romantic between the 2 of them. To me they are just 2 people who had a strong bond through a terrible hardship. It shows that a male and female can have a strong bond and friendship without bringing romance into the mix.

Libby wrote: "My book club discussed this book last night and we all gave it 5 stars. The big discussion topic was whether or not Liesel and Max got married in the end. It was about 50/50. Any thoughts?"

I cannot see why they would. He was 10 years her senior and besides that their relationship seemed to be more sibling like.

No. Never.
Why would they get married?

No, he's more like an older brother to her.

Lynn I agree
Mar 23, 2018 02:16AM · flag

ϟEvelynϟ (last edited Jan 27, 2013 10:24AM ) Jan 27, 2013 10:22AM   0 votes
I thought maybe something would happen between them at the end when Liesel would grow up(since Rudy couldn't :,( ). Idk maybe they did! Though, I saw them more as brother and sister, ya know?

I agree with Gabby. Also, I hope the author would have told us if Liesel and Max were married. I don't believe Zusak intended for them to like each other in that way at all. They both were passionate people and appreciated having someone to talk to, that's all.

At some point I did feel as though Liesel had a bit of a crush on him, and that he had deep feelings for her too. But honestly I saw them as brother and sister. Maybe them moving away together and living together as family. But not anything romantic. But when it was brought to my attention that in her final visions before death arrived she saw everyone but Max, but death mentioned a husband that somewhat leads me to think they may have gotten married later on in life. I guess I can't see her with anybody else, so if she did get married what better person that to marry than Max. He was such a great man


Max was as much a part of Death's story as Liesel, so I feel sure that he would have mentioned that her husband was Max when he told us about her marriage.

I'd like to think that they kept in touch, but I don't think they were married.

I agree, if she couldn't have Rudy, why not Max? He's about the closest person she has and spending a life with him doesn't sound bad at all.

I personally wouldent want her to be with Max, to me hes more of a friend/brother material for her and she cared for him but not in a romantic way.

Interesting. When reading the book, I only felt as if Max and Liesel were good friends. I guess it could be possible, but to me it was always Rudy/Liesel. Their relationship was so sad and tragic and even though in the book it said that Liesel ended up married, I can only see the two of them together.

I thought the same thing when I finished it. I agree with the 50/50 chance.
But, there was also an age difference.
But, it wasn't that much a difference. I think they did, it kills me that they didn't mention who she married (I really wish it did), and since they reunited in the end, them gives more of a chance.
I just hope that she ended up with someone who loved her and who really helped her through her life without her real parents and foster parents and who loved her unconditionally.
And sorry for the rambling, its just my thoughts... :)

This book was really touching and emotional. When I look at Liesel's final visions, I see that Max's name is omitted from the list of important people in her life. This is because he'd survived the war. Not any of the marriage craziness. "Among them, lit like lanterns, were Hans and Rosa Hubermann, her brother, and the boy whose hair remained the color of lemons forever" (Zusak 544). This quote shows all the people, whom Liesel had loved, that died in this book. Evidently, Ilsa Hermann is excluded from the vision too, playing a huge part in Liesel's life. So, I can conclude that Max's name was omitted from Liesel's visions because he'd lived on, despite the war.

Liesel and Max? I agree, why would they get married? The age difference would never work, it's not just a few years. Liesel is so young, at only ten years old how and why would she marry a man in his twenties?

I always felt like he was more of a brother figure to her. They got to know each other when she was a child and he was a man.

Thanks for the update and quick reply.


Whomever she married, I would like to imagine after her death she meets mama, papa and of course, Rudy and he finally gets his well deserved Kiss!

In the end of the book my mind went right to Max being the man she marry and had kids with! It was an happy though of my and yes they are way different in age but doesn`t mean when she was 20 or whatever she didn`t end up marrying the guy! They clearly care for one another in the beginning and could have build up from then on. Since you know, she took a whipping just to see him as he march through her neighborhood. You can`t denial it guys! You did have the moment of seeing them both two.

Their relationship was based on understanding one another. They had experienced loss during the begining, and both found a home at the Hubermanns' house. They were brought together in similar circumstances, so they bonded in a unique way. I believe that she ended up with someone else, never allowing herself to enjoy that happiness with Max afterwards, in the way she vowed to never drink champagne after sharing a glass with Hans. Markus Zusak knows that every reader is different, and will take something unique from the story every single time that they (the reader) read it. I am convinced he left that decision up to us, whether we marry Liesel to Max, or let her find happiness with someone else.
When it comes down to love and hardship, isn't it easier to love someone who went through the same thing as you? Although, it could be argued in the opposite way: best not to remember those events and move on.
Who knows?

They must get married! Towards the end when Death visits Liesel for the final time she is looking back at her life and fondly remembering all the people who have meant so much to her in her life...
There is no mention of Max... But she does mention a husband!

Well, I feel like they should have because of what happened at the end of the story with them. They spent a lot of time together throughout the book while they hid him in their house, and they loved each other a lot.

I don't like to think about that possibility.

At the end Death said she got married and I thinking it's Max?

Of course one can not be sure, everyone has their own interpretations but I do think that Leisel and Max did get married. They had a very deep and emotional relationship and if it wasn't Rudy, I am sure it would have been Max. Has anyone asked this question to Zusak?

Ew No.

Max is like 22 and she's 14 when they met again. Are you sure you want them to get married?

I like to think that Max and Liesel might marry because each could always look beyond the obvious differences in their backgrounds. For a Jew and a German to marry after the war would give me hope for the the end, Liesel always said it was about people. Plus, Liesel was always mature beyond her years.

As much as I like a happy marriage at the end of a book, I felt their relationship was more of a brother/sister. His presence in her life (sort of) filling that family void...especially considering the loss of her actual brother. He was that part of her life, and I think she would need that more than a romantic relationship with him.

No way. The age difference, though fairly large, isn't the issue. The issue is that when Max met her she was a little girl. It would just be creepy.

Max definitely struck me as an older brother much more than a love interest, in any way. I hope they didn't get married.

Sardina (last edited Oct 11, 2021 12:06AM ) Oct 09, 2021 12:27AM   0 votes
Rita7 No, she did not marry max he is waaaay to old for her and she ended up in Australia because her anonymous husband lives there.

Death was a very forward narrator the entire way through the book - he didn't hold back, and he told it as he saw it. That being said, if Liesel had married Max, why would Death not have said? Death would have recognised Max and would have told us. Therefore, I am led to believe that Liesel married someone else.

I honestly don't think they did, I think we would've gotten a little hint like that her kids were Jewish or something.

I think Liesel did marry Max. When Death arrives for Liesel, Death states, "In her final visions, she saw her three children, her grandchildren, her husband, and the long list of lives that merged with hers. Among them, lit like lanterns, were Hans and Rosa Hubermann, her brother, and the boy whose hair remained the color of lemons forever."
Max was a very important character and his suffering such an integral element to the story that Death would have named him amongst the "liy lanterns" Liesel saw upon Passing. He didn't because he had already listed him: her husband.

i always thought they had deep feelings for each other. but not in a romantic way. i think they just liked to have like-minded person to talk to. they really got one another, but i definently didn't think of them getting married, besides the age gap is too big. i wanted rudy and liesel to get together and then he gets killed off :S tear, tear, sniffle. marcus zusak is a great author. i went to the 2011 literature festival with my literature class and marcus zusak was there and we got to listen to him talk he is hilarous ^-^

deleted member Apr 01, 2012 06:48AM   0 votes
I don't think so it was more of a friendship between them. It wasn't a romantic relationship.

I am glad I am not the only one who thought of this. I even thought of all the reasons they wouldn't have but honestly I think they did. I really do.

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