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The Book Thief is a historical novel by Australian author Markus Zusak and is his most popular work. Published in , The Book Thief became an international. The Book Thief book. Read reviews from the world's largest community for readers. It is Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. De. In the hands of Australian writer Markus Zusak, Death is a surprisingly enjoyable omniscient narrator. Sure, Death does his job, and unapologetically so.

Markus Zusak Book Thief

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The award-winning Australian author of The Book Thief on his conversion to Jane Austen and chewing on Dr Seuss. Markus Zusak. Fri 22 Mar. Everyone should read Markus Zusak's The Book Thief, says Philip Ardagh. Actress, writer and director Heidi Stillman wrote the stage adaptation of The Book Thief, playing at Steppenwolf Theatre this fall. Heidi and Markus Zusak took.

Just don't ask me to be nice. Nice has nothing to do with me.

In Zusak's latest young adult novel, The Book Thief , Death doesn't gleefully gather up the newly dead. Rather, he's resigned to the fact that he can never take a vacation, and he learns to cope with pained leftover humans by acutely observing and eloquently describing the colors that saturate the sky when he carries away a soul.

Zusak, author of four previous teen novels including Printz Honor Book I Am the Messenger , put aside his house-cleaning chores to talk with BookPage from his home in Sydney. He says of The Book Thief , "When I first started writing, Death was a lot more macabre; he was enjoying himself too much. Nine months later, I thought of the last line [of the book] and decided that was the way to do it.

It would be ironic: She carries that book with her to her new foster home, and it is the first in a series of thefts and literary explorations. As Liesel's world becomes ever more strange and frightening, books steady her and stealing from a Nazi book-burning, from the mayor's wife's library empowers her, even as her friends are recruited for Hitler Youth and her family hides a Jewish man, Max, in their basement.

About Cindy Hudson

Her books are her secret, and even Hitler's footmen cannot take away the stories she so eagerly absorbs. The author's parents grew up in WWII Europe and throughout his childhood told and retold stories of these years. Everything was red, and the sky was on fire. The other was about seeing Jewish people being marched to Dachau. A boy ran out to give a man piece of bread, and a soldier whipped both the man and the boy. I thought I'd write a page novella around those incidents, but the research started building until I had a whole other mass of things.

The Book Thief grew to plus pages, but Zusak's unusual, compelling tale renders page count irrelevant. How could he?

But he did. He and Liesel both suffer from nightmares — but Liesel's grief is relatively uncomplicated. She must live with her mother's choices.

Max must live with his own. Max isn't the only fighter Marcus Zusak has written about.

Interview with Markus Zusak, Author of The Book Thief and I Am the Messenger

His first novel published in America, "Fighting Ruben Wolfe" , follows the fistic exploits of Cameron and Ruben Wolfe, brothers who scrape by in a working-class neighborhood in Sydney.

As boxers in an illicit league, Ruben becomes a champion and his little brother Cam, an inferior boxer, is known for his strong chin and resilience. In the end, it's Ruben who wants to be like Cam — better to be a fighter than a winner. That novel was followed by a sequel, "Getting the Girl" , which is about learning to fight for, and open up to, love, and then by the award-winning "I Am the Messenger" , a strange and alluring novel about a year-old compelled to vigilantism by anonymous instructions delivered on playing cards.

All of Zusak's protagonists have been fighters, whether born or made.

But while his writing has always been ambitious and his characterizations precise, his early books merely celebrated fighting. In "The Book Thief," where battling to survive is sometimes an act of weakness, we see fighting in all its complexity.

Interview with Markus Zusak

Hitler takes off his gloves, seemingly defeated — until he whips the crowd into a fury. The "fists of an entire nation" attack Max, and he cannot fight them all off.

This is fighting as "The Book Thief" understands it: Indeed, everything is upside down in Zusak's Nazi Germany. Sounds are tasted, visions are heard, death has a heart, the strong do not survive, and your best chance of living may be a concentration camp. The entropy of this world is near complete. Some will argue that a book so difficult and sad may not be appropriate for teenage readers.

Adults will probably like it this one did , but it's a great young-adult novel. Many teenagers will find the story too slow to get going, which is a fair criticism. But it's the kind of book that can be life-changing, because without ever denying the essential amorality and randomness of the natural order, "The Book Thief" offers us a believable, hard-won hope.

That hope is embodied in Liesel, who grows into a good and generous person despite the suffering all around her, and finally becomes a human even Death can love.

The Book Thief

The hope we see in Liesel is unassailable, the kind you can hang on to in the midst of poverty and war and violence. Young readers need such alternatives to ideological rigidity, and such explorations of how stories matter. And so, come to think of it, do adults.

Tell us what you think. Please upgrade your browser. See next articles.I look back and realize that I forgot the audience as I was writing.

I was sixteen when I tried to write my first book. Another, lesser known fact about Rosa, is that she has a penchant for Pacific Tree Walrus blubber.

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They were both whipped, one for giving the bread, one for taking it. It just made sense to me.

I cannot recommend it highly enough. His periodic soliloquies aren't the most effective moments of the novel, and if he took an M. To supplement the household income, she does washing and ironing for five of the wealthier households in Molching.

I did interviews and researched until I couldn't stand it anymore. Almost cute, if it wasn't for her face.

RACQUEL from Nebraska
I do relish wildly. Also read my other articles. I have always been a very creative person and find it relaxing to indulge in trainspotting.