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The Book Thief

By: Markus Zusak


What would your life story be if Death was the narrator? Looking back, Leisel Meminger's story is simple, really--foster child, reader, thief. But it is also complex. Living under Nazi rule in WWII Germany, Leisel desperately seeks something to call her own and discovers the power of books. At first, she cannot read the books she steals; she merely wants to possess them. In fact, her first pilfered book is a guide for digging graves. But with the help of her foster father, Leisel learns to read and is soon sharing the stories in her stolen books with her friends and neighbors. And this is where her story gets complicated. There's the foster mother who constantly swears at her, the neighbors who share the bomb shelter, her friend and partner-in-crime Rudy who is trying to escape his destiny, and the Jewish fist-fighter, hidden in her basement, who is hoping to delay his march to Dachau. Which story brings Death to the book? Read The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak to find out.


Prepared by Shauna Yusko, Teacher-Librarian, Evergreen Junior High, Redmond, Washington