Friday, December 6, 2013

Words Have the Power to Change Us--The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

"I'm always finding humans at their best and worst. 
I see their ugly and their beauty and I wonder how the same can be both."
--Markus Zusak, The Book Thief

Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers, 552 pages
Publication Date: March 14th, 2006
Source: Bought

Goodreads Description

It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still.

Liesel Meminger is a foster girl living outside of Munich, who scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.

In superbly crafted writing that burns with intensity, award-winning author Markus Zusak, author of I Am the Messenger, has given us one of the most enduring stories of our time.

My Thoughts

I just...I can't. There is no review that can do this book justice. There are no words that I can find to express my deep rooted love for this book, this story, and most importantly, the words. Too many feels to be had. So here are my thoughts while reading and my plethora of favorite quotes...try not to cry...I'll also try not to list the whole book.

Favorite Quotes

“I have hated words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right.” 

“The only thing worse than a boy who hates you: a boy that loves you.” 

“It kills me sometimes, how people die.” 

“He does something to me, that boy. Every time. It’s his only detriment. He steps on my heart. He makes me cry.” 

“He must have loved her so incredibly hard.” 

“A small but noteworthy note. I've seen so many young men over the years who think they're running at other young men. They are not. They are running at me.” 

"The best word shakers were the ones who understood the true power of words. They were the ones who could climb the highest."

"I need a win, Liesel."

“His soul sat up. It met me. Those kinds of souls always do - the best ones. The ones who rise up and say "I know who you are and I am ready. Not that I want to go, of course, but I will come." Those souls are always light because more of them have been put out. More of them have already found their way to other places.” 

“How about a kiss, Saumensch?"

“She said it out loud, the words distributed into a room that was full of cold air and books. Books everywhere! Each wall was armed with overcrowded yet immaculate shelving. It was barely possible to see paintwork. There were all different styles and sizes of lettering on the spines of the black, the red, the gray, the every-colored books. It was one of the most beautiful things Liesel Meminger had ever seen.
With wonder, she smiled.
That such a room existed!” 

"How fitting that she was discovering the power of words."

“It’s a small story really, about, among other things:

* A girl
* Some words
* An accordionist
* Some fanatical Germans
* A Jewish fist fighter
* And quite a lot of thievery” 

"Yes, often, I am reminded of her, and in one of my vast array of pockets, I have kept her story to retell it. It is one of the small legion I carry, each one extraordinary in its own right. Each one an attempt--an immense leap of an attempt--to prove to me that you, and your human existence, are worth it.
Here it is. One of a handful.
The Book Thief.
If you feel like it, come with me. I'll tell you a story.
I'll show you something."

“I wanted to tell the book thief many things, about beauty and brutality. But what could I tell her about those things that she didn't already know? I wanted to explain that I am constantly overestimating and underestimating the human race—that rarely do I ever simply estimate it. I wanted to ask her how the same thing could be so ugly and so glorious, and its words and stories so damning and brilliant.

None of those things, however, came out of my mouth.

All I was able to do was turn to Liesel Meminger and tell her the only truth I truly know. I said it to the book thief and I say it now to you.

I am haunted by humans.” 


  1. Ahhhh, I loved this book so much! I read it last year, and hadn't picked it up in a while so when I read through those quotes, I just... wow. Such a wonderful book. very beautiful.

  2. I just bought this book for my Kindle. Hopefully I will get around to reading it soon! I need to see what all these feels are about!!

  3. I have not read this yet.... but I do own it. I saw the movie and fell in love with the characters. The movie was crazy emotional--- I don't know if I could handle the book. So many amazing quotes.

  4. I adore this book! It's one of the books I'm most glad that I've read this year (for the first time), as it took me through a whole gamut of emotions. It was so hard for me to review, and just seeing these quotes makes me all emotional again. I haven't seen the movie yet though!

  5. This is my all time favourite book and people are probably sick of me going on about it! lol When I finished it I could barely speak and I couldn't get it out of my head! How do you ever get over a book like this? Such a powerful story and though I'm nervous about the movie, my friend and I plan to go see it when it comes out in the UK.

  6. I loved this book. I totally get your feelings - words cannot do it justice but your notes are so sweet and love the quotes you provided!! So glad you loved this one too!

    Nicole @ The Quiet Concert

  7. "I just...I can't. There is no review that can do this book justice."

    Yep. Exactly. The writing in this book is absolutely amazing, and the emotional impact is HUGE. It's just - wow.

  8. I agree, there is NO way to review this book. I can't find words to describe this beautiful story.

  9. This a very appealing and human story. Well written and humorous, this author manages to portray the horror and tragedy of war and Holocaust and at the same time show the beauty of humanity. Well worth reading.
    Highly recommended Sacramento Painting Company

  10. Great quotes collection. Thanks for sharing!!

  11. OH MY GOSH this book is SO good and your quotes are BRINGING. BACK. MY. FEELS. YOU ARE SO EVIL.
    I need to reread this now...


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