English II honors – period 1
22 January 2013
The Book Thief essay
Love is a major theme in The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Rudy’s love for Liesel causes him to stick by her side through good and bad. Liesel is compelled by her love for books and the feeling of conquering new words. Papa’s love for Liesel is very profound throughout the course of the book. Love is the driving force for many people throughout the novel. Rudy loves Liesel from the moment they start becoming close friends. The first time his love is shown is by the narrator when he says “The only thing worse than a boy that hates you, a boy who loves you.” (52) His love is once again demonstrated in the scene where they are walking home from school after Liesel got into a fight. Liesel is broken and begins to sob in the rain. Through all this Rudy remains at her side, not sure how to comfort her but there for support. Furthermore, Liesel is constantly tormented by Rudy’s requests for a kiss, the impulses of his puppy love. The protagonist, Liesel, suffers from an undying love for books. This love is so strong that she is compelled to commit crimes not once, but three times, in order to get her hands on a new book. The amazing thing is that Liesel, for majority of the book, cannot even read but yet she must have the books in her possession. Her compellations get so bad that she is willing to embarrass herself in front of her whole class, just to get a chance to read a few words off of a different book. At one point during the book Liesel is faced with a whole collection of novels and she becomes transfixed to the point of not being able to talk, a little girl who has comes face to face with the “love of her life”. Papa shows a different love than Liesel and Rudy. His love is that of a father, one who can be kind and sweet or harsh and to the point. Throughout the novel Papa constantly sacrifices his possessions in order to provide the best he can for Liesel....
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