03 May 2010

The Book Thief

I’ve been reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. If you haven’t read it, I won’t spoil anything but I will say that it’s about a German girl named Liesel and takes place in the late 1930’s/early 1940’s, and is narrated by Death. There are a lot of amazing things about this book and at page 143, I’m so hooked that I went home to read it on my lunch break, but what I was thinking about today was luck. We are SO LUCKY. This little girl can’t read at 10, and when she does learn, she treasures books like gold. But in Nazi Germany, books are hard to come by, and she cherishes them.


When I was 10, I read voraciously. My mother jokes about telling me to “put the book down and go to bed” and it’s true, I read with a flashlight under the covers until I was discovered. I mean, I grew up to be a librarian, so you can see where I’m at with reading. And my own children love to be read to, now my five year old is starting to read on his own, and their rooms are filled (bookcases to the brim, overflow on shelves in the closets) with books. To think of a little girl who can count her books on one hand… it’s amazing how much we have.


Information is access to freedom. Without information, people are relegated to their current state, with no hopes of becoming better educated, better paid, better fed and better housed. Those with access to information can vote intelligently, can make changes, can understand when something is WRONG. That’s why Hitler burned books. People who are deprived of knowledge are less likely to revolt.


So, yeah, you might say I like the book.

No comments: