The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
{4.9 stars, only because I was little put off by the narrative style at first}

Dear Markus Zusak-I love you and I loathe you. I don't even know how I'm going to handle the movie. ;.;

Dear Liesel, I wish there were words I could give you to hold you through your next years after Himmel Street. I wish I could hold you and be your book thieving side-kick. I wish you could see that not all of the world is loss and pain.

There are so many things that I want to say to all of you: Hans, Rosa, Max, and dear Rudy. I just cannot find the words, as all of you did. Even Death. I wish you didn't have to bear and witness so much. Even you suffer. All humans have hearts, and sometimes the worst of circumstances brushes the dust off of others that were hidden, or hardens others, keeping them on the shelf. This book did both, in a different way. I smiled and laughed, and you broke my heart and handed it to me, never patching it up---and sometimes that's OK. It lets us know we are human--in my opinion--unlike the Furher. We have hearts that can be broken, even by deaths of these fictional characters, and even if it isn't this book, we can always mend it again with another. Mend it with words like Leisel. This book is certainly a downer, but it's also a thinking book, it's a changing your perspective, carpe diem book. I would say that none of you deserved what happened, but than we are taking reality for granted. This actually happened to families. Some survived, many didn't. Zusak, you snatched up so many lives, you and Death, and while by the end, my heart sagged with sorrow and my eyes hurt with unshed tears, I understand you had to do it. Though through my tears now I cannot find a logical reason, there has to be one.

By the last 20 pgs read at 6:30 am, I cannot control the weeping, and an hour later I still can't. I keep telling myself, they're not real, they're not real, but for a week, I ate pea soup with Liesel, Hans, Rosa, and eventually Max. They became my temporary family where to be honest, I always feel a little emptiness. I heard Hans accordion and felt the mud on my face as I tossed Liesel the football. I even felt the whip. It hurt so bad, and you might think I'm silly, that it's just a book. It's not, at least to me. Words are my home, and for them to crush me and bury me under roses with the fictional family I just lost that I had placed there--many books have stirred my feelings, such as Jane Eyre. Many books have made me feel out of reality, feel connection, feel emotions, for days and weeks--but never ever like The Book Thief.