No. 21 – Most Popular Aussie Novels of All Time
by Clayton Wehner - December 4th, 2010
At #21 – The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
22.7% of all respondents have read this book
Synopsis for The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
It is 1939. Nazi Germany. The country is holding its breath. Death has never been busier, and will become busier still. Liesel Meminger and her younger brother are being taken by their mother to live with a foster family outside Munich. Liesel’s father was taken away on the breath of a single, unfamiliar word – Kommunist – and Liesel sees the fear of a similar fate in her mother’s eyes. On the journey, death visits the young boy, and notices Liesel. It will be the first of many near encounters. By her brother’s graveside, Liesel’s life is changed when she picks up a single object, partially hidden in the snow. It is The Gravedigger’s Handbook, left there by accident, and it is her first act of book thievery. So begins a love affair with books and words, as Liesel, with the help of her accordion-playing foster father, learns to read. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor’s wife’s library, wherever there are books to be found. But these are dangerous times. When Liesel’s foster family hides a Jewish fist-fighter in their basement, Liesel’s world is both opened up, and closed down.
Awards for The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- 2006 – Commonwealth Writers Prize for Best Book (South East Asia & South Pacific
- 2006 – Horn Book Fanfare
- 2006 – Kirkus Reviews Editor Choice Award
- 2006 – School Library Journal Best Book of the Year
- 2006 – Daniel Elliott Peace Award
- 2006 – Publishers Weekly Best Children Book of the Year
- 2006 – Booklist ChildrenEditors’ Choice
- 2006 – Bulletin Blue Ribbon Book
- 2007 – Boeke Prize
- 2007 – ALA Best Books for Young Adults
- 2007 – Michael L. Printz Honor Book
- 2007 – Book Sense Book of the Year
- 2009 – Pacific Northwest Young Readers Choice Master List
About Markus Zusak (Books by Markus Zusak…)
Markus Frank Zusak (born 23 June 1975) is an Australian author. He is best known for his books The Messenger (published in USA as I Am the Messenger) and The Book Thief, which have been international bestsellers.
Zusak was born in Sydney, the son of an Austrian house painter father and a German mother. He is the youngest of four children. As he was growing up, he heard stories about Nazi Germany, the bombing of Munich, and Jews being marched through the small German town in which his mother lived. These stories inspired him to write The Book Thief.
Zusak was inspired to write after reading the books The Old Man and the Sea and What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. He started writing when he was sixteen and his first book, The Underdog, was published seven years later.
Zusak lives in Sydney with his wife and daughter. He enjoys surfing and watching movies in his spare time.
The List so far…
#22 – Dirt Music by Tim Winton
#23 – Breath by Tim Winton