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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Book Blog: The Book Thief

Rating:5 Stars
Oh dear. What a scary cover.

That's what my friend thought, at least. And I think I'm going to have to agree with her. The letters in the title ARE pretty weird. And small. Why must the title be so small?!

I hate historical fiction, or even anything historical in fact. I find it very bland and by the time I found out this was placed in World War 2, it was too late.

The beginning was a little hard for me to understand at first (and very discouraging). I had to look up the narrator because I thought that he was the colors (I misread the first page), but then realized it was death. Lame, I know, but I get it now!

But, holy crap. This has to be the best historical fiction I have ever read. It read well and had plenty of wit and even humor in it (which is surprising because all of the World War 2 books I've read in my life were very depressing. I guess it's because this book was about the Germans and not so much about the Jewish). Another part of the book that I liked was the bits of German that was slipped into the story. I learned some German without even knowing it! And the little illustrations that showed up every once in a while we're cute too. Don't worry for those of you who haven't read the book yet; it's not like the "little kids" books. It's part of the story.


Now, prior to reading, I had read a different review that said that the book didn't have a happy ending. And it didn't. But I was kind of expecting an ending that made me cry puddles on the floor, which I guess I would have if it was for one thing.

The author spoiled the ending.

Or perhaps it's death that spoiled it? Either way, the creator of the story spoils the ending of the book through the story to supposedly lessen the pain/shock when you read about the bombing and the deaths of Papa, Mamma, and Rudy (not to mention the numerous other characters). That's great and all, but I would have liked it a lot more if those parts were taken out. It's been a long time since I've cried over a book and I was really hoping for a real tear-jerker from this one.

But the epilogue...wasn't all that great. I usually consider the epilogue to be the true ending of the book because its (usually) the last thing the reader reads before the book is tossed aside for another to take its place. I'm glad for the bit explaining about what happens to Max and everyone else, but the last sentence was weak. Looking back on it, I wish that the author just left the whole epilogue out to leave the read wondering. Sometimes those are the best kind of books. Like in The Fault in Our Stars's Imperial Affliction and its incomplete ending. It left the characters hanging which led to the whole trip to.....I can't even remember which country they traveled to. But it's not important. What's important is that books like THAT are great because of the love/hate relationship the reader feels with the book. If a book can make you feel that way, then it must be a fantastic book.

But I guess we can't have it all, can we?



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