*slight spoiler alert*
HERE IS A SMALL FACT – YOU ARE GOING TO DIE
1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier.
Liesel, a nine-year-old girl, is living with a foster family on Himmel Street. Her parents have been taken away to a concentration camp. Liesel steals books. This is her story and the story of the inhabitants of her street when the bombs begin to fall.
SOME IMPORTANT INFORMATION – THIS NOVEL IS NARRATED BY DEATH
It’s a small story, about:
some fanatical Germans
a Jewish fist fighter
and quite a lot of thievery.
ANOTHER THING YOU SHOULD KNOW – DEATH WILL VISIT THE BOOK THIEF THREE TIMES
If there’s one book that can break your heart, then it’s definitely this one. It probably sounds like every book I read breaks my heart, but this one seriously did. It’s not difficult to see why this became a best-seller. The depth of raw emotions and the beauty of the writing in general is enough to stir up an emotional connection to this novel. Not every moment in this novel is complete devastation which is appreciated. Sure, it starts off explicitly stating that death is inevitable but that’s how it hooks you. From that first line, you’re curious to figure out what direction the story will go in and it takes you on one hell of a journey.
Each character’s personality is explained to a T; there’s not a detail missed out. At first, you believe that Liesel’s Stepmother is simply a b*tch, but you grow to learn that’s not the case. She’s protective, and she loves Liesel beneath her tough exterior. Her step-father is a free-spirited man who never once falters to show his admiration for Liesel. They develop a tight family bond that builds on both of them as the story progresses; they change each other in ways nobody could imagine.
Then, there’s Rudy who’s a complete cheeky chops and absolutely adorable. Rudy and Liesel’s friendship blossoms so beautifully that you’re completely engrossed in their world.
Finally, there’s Max who opens up Liesel’s eyes so she can see an entirely new world. He’s kind and takes a shine to her from their first meeting. It’s more of a brotherly attachment, so don’t get any ideas thinking it’s anything other as that’d make him beyond creepy. All in all, every character wants what’s best for each other. You grow invested in their stories individually and as a whole. Obviously, not all the characters are pleasant but I’ll let you read the book to find out who I’m talking about! No more mild spoilers from me.
Due to the fact this novel is set during the War, it’s obvious that there’ll be plenty of unfortunate events that occur. They will make your blood boil most of the time. It’s refreshing that it isn’t romanticised. It’s gritty, raw and gives you some insight to what living during a war was like. It was difficult and terrifying, but the people had to get on like normal as there was no other option.
This is one of my all time favourite books and I’d recommend it to anybody. It’s incredibly powerful and harrowing and will leave you wanting to re-read it time and time again. I’d truly give this book 5/5 and if you’ve read any of my other reviews then you’ll know I’ve never given any other book that rating.