I have read a lot of good books, a lot of great books even, but never have I come across a book that has affected me quite like this one has. I finished reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak on Friday night, sobbing, after reading the 500+ page book in about a day. I could not stop reading this book. Zusak tells the story of Liesel, a young German girl, growing up in Nazi Germany. The entire book is narrated by Death, which gives the reader a clue that this book certainly is not going to be a happy, cheerful one in the least, but surprisingly, Death does a great job as the Narrator. We meet Liesel as she is on her way to a foster family, her mother no longer able to care for her and her younger brother in times of extreme poverty and sickness. Within the first five pages, her younger brother dies right in front of her. This is just the beginning of the horror and tragedy that Liesel will endure through this novel. We get to see Liesel learn to to love words and view books as treasures only granted to those worthy enough to hold them. We see an intense love of family, friendship, and normalcy. Most importantly, we get to view the extreme ruthlessness of the Nazi world through the eyes of a child expected to be a Nazi herself. Rarely do we get that in books. This is a true gem...I have never read anything better. I would recommend every single one of you read this book, it was completely magical.