Markus Zusak

Translation Rights Kate Cooper, +44 020 7393 4425 Email Kate Cooper

The Book Thief

Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Book 2006 book
Fiction
ANZ Picador Books
US Knopf
UK Doubleday
2005

It’s just 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. . . .

Set during world war two in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside Munich. Liesel 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 neighbours during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau. This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.

The Book Thief has won numerous awards and was listed on the New York Times Children's Bestseller list for over one hundred weeks.


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Kate Cooper manages the translation rights for The Book Thief

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Reviews


The Book Thief is unsettling and unsentimental, yet ultimately poetic. Its grimness and tragedy run through the reader’s mind like a black-and-white movie, bereft of the colors of life. Zusak may not have lived under Nazi domination, but The Book Thief deserves a place on the same shelf with The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank and Elie Wiesel’s Night. It seems poised to become a classic.
USA Today


Zusak doesn’t sugarcoat anything, but he makes his ostensibly gloomy subject bearable the same way Kurt Vonnegut did in Slaughterhouse-Five: with grim, darkly consoling humor.” Time Magazine


Elegant, philosophical and moving...Beautiful and important
Kirkus


An extraordinary narrative
School Library Journal


Exquisitely written and memorably populated, Zusak's poignant tribute to words, survival, and their curiously inevitable entwinement is a tour de force to be not just read but inhabited.

The Horn Book Magazine


One of the most highly anticipated young-adult books in years
The Wall Street Journal