The Book Thief

By: Markus Zusak

Book summary

The novel The Book Thief is about a young girl Liesel Meminger who is living during Nazi Germany. Her whole family dies except her, so she has to go live with foster parents. Her dad is teaching her how to read because Liesel has a book that she stole. Max Vandenburg,a Jewish person, arrives at Liesel's house. Liesel finds out that she has a lot in common with the boy, they become very good friends. Then, the air raids began to rain on them. They had to leave their house because the basement wasn't deep enough for protection, so they had to leave Max behind. These bomb attacks continue throughout the whole story, making their family worried and scared.
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About the Author

The author of The Book Thief is Markus Zusak. He was born in Sydney, Australia. He started writing early, but it took him seven years just to publish his first book. His family were immigrants, so he experienced a lot of hardships in his life. His first novel was The Underdog. Both of his parents experienced World War ll. His parents were the ones who inspired him to write The Book Thief because they told him stories about life in Munich and Vienna. When he was working on The Book Thief he rewrote it the first 80 pages more than 400 times before he was satisfied. Markus always wanted to be a painter because his father was, but he couldn't do it. He says that failure is his best success.
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Book Reviews

Deserves a place on the same shelf with The Diary Of a Young Girl by Anne Frank.... poised to become a classic. -People

Zusak doesn't sugarcoat anythingm but he makes his ostensible gloomy subjct bearable... with grim, darkly consoling humor. -The Washington Post

Absorbing and searing. -The washington Post


I can compare this book to the novel I am Number Four. Both books are about a person trying to hide people from a certain group. In I am Number Four there is a boy John who is an alien that is trying to hide and protect him along with more people of his race from other aliens trying to destroy them. In The Book Thief Liesel and her family are hiding a Jewish person from a group of people. Another similarity is that both of the main characters are not afraid to get into a fight. Liesel fought a boy at school and John beat up a group of football players. The differences of these books is that in I am Number Four it is set in rural towns with barley any people there. While in The Book Thief they are living in a more populated area where there are more people that can find the Jewish person. Another difference is that I am Number Four is more relatable to most readers because not many people have lived through Nazi Germany who are reading The Book Thief. For this reason I believe that I am Number Four is a better read because I can relate to it better. John is my age and is going to school just like I am so it is easier to put myself in his place.


The setting of The Book Thief is in Nazi Germany, 1939. It is set in a fictional town of Molching, Germany which is near Munich. The family lives on Himmel Street. Death is the narrator of the story, which gives it a unique point of view.
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This book is a extremely unique read. It has an abundance of historical references and facts in a riveting story line. Having death as the narrator affects how the reader views the holocaust. Most books on Nazi Germany just have a character talking or writing, but this one puts a nice spin having death as the narrator. The Book Thief helps give the reader a sense of what it felt like living in Germany at this time. It gives readers many chances to predict and to imagine themselves in situations that Liesel had to deal with.
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