Monday, February 5, 2007

Review: #2 Chunkster, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

*cross posted on psychomamma.blogspot.com

Oh my goodness. Read this book. Read it right now. I mean, set down whatever you are doing and get in the car and go buy this book. Seriously. So many people I know and blogs I've read have named this as one of their best books of 2006. I've never seen so much raving about a single book. Now I'm doing it too. I told my husband last night that this might just be the best book I've ever read.

I found the book hiding in the Young Adult section of the library. All three copies were there. Maybe no one knows where to look for it! The first few pages I wasn't entirely sure. I hate it when authors try to do something "different", something "clever" just for the sake of being different. The story is narrated by Death, unusual in itself. But then, every few pages, Death stops the narrative to make an "announcement" - some kind of a statement that he wants the reader to know - in bold writing and with a lot of asterisks around it. It distracted me for about two pages, and by then I was so lost in the book that it never bothered me again. Somehow it seemed to fit. After all, who knows how Death would behave differently than a normal narrator?

This book is set in Nazi Germany and follows a little German girl from about age 10 to age 14, right in the middle of World War II. I won't say more than that as not to spoil it. But this book is highly meaningful and has more depth than most books I've read. I don't know where Markus Zusak has been hiding - and I understand this book is different than most of his -- but, in the style of Death:

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READ THIS BOOK
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15 comments:

Wendy said...

Oh my yes! I loved this book too...best book I've ever read (and I've read a LOT of books!). I can't stop thinking about the book, and I've been telling everyone who will listen to me to go read it! You can see my review at: http://caribousmom.blogharbor.com/blog/Books/_archives/2007/1/28/2691667.html

Sheri said...

I've read it! It's great!

LK said...

I have it, it's TBR....definitely.

Literary Feline said...

My question is: Is someone like me, who doesn't usually care for YA, going to enjoy it? (Harry Potter being the big time exception because I'm a huge fan of J.K. Rowlings series.)

Lisa said...

Yes!! I don't read ANY YA. It's not a genre that I read at all, and I can't for the life of me figure out why this one is classified this way. There's nothing about it that sets it apart from any other fiction that I would read. Maybe the author classified it that way because that is who he WROTE it for? I dont' know. But I don't think you'd have any problem with it on that score.

Literary Feline said...

Thanks, Lisa. The subject matter interests me quite a bit but I've been leery because of that YA categorization. You've convinced me to give it a try!

Orange Blossom Goddess (aka Heather) said...

WOW!! OK! I'll read it!!

SuziQoregon said...

I thought it was great too. I've passed my copy along to my Sister in Law. I don't know why it's hiding in the YA section. It should be out in front of the bookstore with a big sign that says "You Need to Read This Book!"

Kim said...

I will join in with all the "Yes! Read it now!" comments...I just finished it last week and I can't stop thinking about it! And I am also puzzled about the YA classification. But, the more word of mouth it gets, the more people will read it, so definitely READ THIS BOOK!

Bookfool said...

I'm always so thrilled to see that another reader has found The Book Thief and read it. I just can't say enough wonderful things about it and I try to shove it on everyone. As mature as the writing is, the YA classification baffles me.

3M said...

I had planned on reading this the second half of the year, but now I may read it the first half and count it as one of my Chunksters, too. Thanks for the review!

Carrie said...

(Followed your link through Semicolon.)

Well, I'm sold! I'll check the library for it this week! Thanks for the recommendation. How can I refuse a review that is so......insistant! Fun.

Carrie said...

It's sitting on my shelf to read very soon.

Elsie Wilson said...

The question is, as it is marketed as a young adult book how young? We bought it, to read aloud to our son, but how young can we go before it's inappropriate?

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