The Buddy Reading Club

Book Discussion : The Book Thief by Markus Zusak


The book thief, buddy reading with Nerdy bookarazzi

Meenu: Hey Bookish people! Welcome to The Nerdy Bookarazzi’s Buddy Reading Club by Suchi and me. So yeah, this is going to be the debut conversation over here on The Nerdy Bookarazzi. So Suchi, how do you feel about it? Are you excited?

Suchitra: This is actually quite exciting, to be able to share our views on a platform where like-minded people can connect and interact.

Meenu: Yeah! When I first asked you to do Buddy Reading with me, I seriously did not think that we would do something like this. It was extremely gradual. We thought, we have been simply buddy reading together, let’s write a review together and which turned into a discussion which we wanted to share with our readers. I’m glad our minds worked the way they did. If not we wouldn’t have taken this initiative.

Suchitra: It’s like we kept on improvising and finally we landed here. I’m also happy that I’m able to read all these books which I have been postponing for a long time. Buddy Reading has actually made me read books faster.

Meenu: That’s very true. But now creating content part takes too much time. Not that I’m complaining lol. I have always wanted to read The Book Thief, it was on my shelf for quite a few months now but I have been preoccupied with my guilty pleasure kind of reads.

Suchitra: How did you like the book?

Meenu: The book was phenomenal. I know this book would be good because I have only heard good reviews about it but I did not expect it to be this good. It outstripped my expectation. I think after a long time I’m reading such an emotionally fulfilling book.

Suchitra: I started this book with zero expectations. Obviously, I know the book is a classic and I’m someone who hates over popular shows and books, so I didn’t particularly rely on reviews, I wanted to read it for myself and decide. One good thing is, that I didn’t even have the smallest of idea what this book was going to be about. That made the book all the more interesting.

Meenu: Yeah, I totally agree with you. By the way, I learned a lot of German slang. I think I can tell people I know German?

Suchitra: You’re gonna swear at people with all you SaumenchSaukerl and Arschlochlol

Meenu: Well, at least we knew a few words? In all seriousness, I felt like the book was so relevant even today. I kept on comparing it with today’s happenings.

Suchitra: Damn! I felt the same! Understanding history makes us not repeat the same mistakes of the past. In today’s age and time, I can’t help but feel we have come full circle, back to square one.

Meenu: Exactly and that’s why I think everyone should read this book. Okay, so who is your favourite character?

Suchitra: I liked Hans a lot. He seemed to be honourable till the end.

Meenu: Honourable? Agreeable? What? You still haven’t come out of Pride and Prejudice? 😛 It’s been a really long time bruh!

Suchitra: You know how much I love Jane Austen, I might have picked up her slang here and there. Coming back to the point, I liked Hans a lot. It is very hard to find your footing ethically when all your friends and family are aggressive supporters of Nazis especially when they are in power. Imagine being willing to lose your own son as you have some firm beliefs that contradict the views of the majority. It was truly a scary time and I love characters who remain true to themselves and their ethics even in the face of adversity. They are true heroes to me. I also loved Max. I loved how in his own way he tried to stay sane and leave his mark on this world, by using the same weapon Hitler used, Words!

Meenu: I think I mostly liked everyone, at least the major characters, starting from the Book thief obviously, I love Rudy, Hans and Max the most. I also loved Rosa because initially, she seemed so harsh and brutal with Liesel, and you start to think maybe she is just a mean old woman. But she surprised me with the amount of support she showed for Hans and Liesel in difficult times. She’s like a jackfruit, very hard from the outside, but inside she is just the warmest and the most reliable of people just like our very own mothers who give us a hard time. These are my top favourite guys and I loved their relationship with Liesel. Damn man! I loved this Rudy guy for what he did when he was young, that was insane and that showcased how pure he is at heart from a very young age.

Suchitra: Experiencing Rudy and Liesel living out their childhood, and growing up too fast because the world around them did not allow them to stay innocent and naïve was heart-breaking. Rudy was just perfect to make us feel the giddiness of childhood, with his own ways of protesting and being Liesel’s best partner in crime.  

Meenu: True that! I also admired the author’s ability to come up with such a plot. This is the kind of book I love. It is fat, it is detail-oriented but not descriptive and boring. These kinds of books are not particularly fast-paced but you cannot stop turning the pages. It’s like a slow burn. You know what I mean, it’s like Thousand splendid suns and books like that, I can’t think of any similar books. What I mean to say is the vibe of the book itself was captivating.

Suchitra: Yes, of course! I get it. This book actually took me to my childhood. This is the kind of book I used to read when I was in school. I enjoyed each page of it.

Meenu: Initially, for some 10-20 pages I couldn’t make head or tail out of it. The starting line of the book itself was captivating but then it took some time to understand the context of the events taking place. I had to give some time to get into the plot but this fact didn’t stop me from reading the book, in fact, it only built my curiosity.

Suchitra: Yeah exactly! So many of the characters were too good to be true, and I always had some suspicion that something luminous was right around the corner. There was this negative vibe throughout the book despite some really wholesome events were going on. I think this had something to do with Death narrating the story. It made us feel like every small happy moment was temporary and there was some grave event awaiting us.

Meenu: Yeah I thought I was the only negative person here. Lol! I think we are accustomed to the negative sides of people that we keep waiting for them to turn around and do something incredibly evil and vile. That also made me feel kind of sad, that growing up we just lost the innocence and belief in the goodness of people in general. I essentially suspected almost every single character, whether it be Hans or Rosa or Max, to take advantage of a precious little girl like Liesel. 

Suchitra: I know. I was moved to tears by how this book showed unexpected sides of people whom I initially distrusted.

Meenu: Damn! I was on full water works, particularly towards the end and all, it was really difficult. As you said, the kindness shown by people like Max’s father, the Hubermanns’ neighbour, and their simplest and smallest of gestures made me cry miserably. People having each others’ back during difficult times, man, that made so emotional.

Suchitra: I loved the way, Markus Zusak brought all these different characters to single plotline and carried the story forward which was incredible.

Meenu: I generally love those kinds of plot lines with multiple characters converging at some point, they are not easy to accomplish but if done right, it would be nothing short of amazement. I also liked Max’s dream where he fights the Fuhrer! I don’t have words to explain what it made me feel. And of course the illustrations damn! That was genius!

Suchitra: I think it going to be really hard to get out of this book anytime soon.

Meenu: Yeah, I have been hungover by this book for weeks now. I think my dad will enjoy this book, I’ll suggest him to read it.

Suchitra: Even I want my dad to read it and asks how he feels about it.

Meenu: I think we have found ourselves a job to market this book to our parents then, didn’t we?

Suchitra: Hahaha! Yes bro!

Meenu: So, I think we have almost covered whatever we felt about this book. I think we can call it a day and start reading our next book together, what say?

Suchitra: Couldn’t agree more!

Meenu: Do you think, we need to tell our readers what we are going read together next?

Suchitra: You know what? Let’s keep it a secret 😀

Meenu: Yeah! I think that’s a good idea. We need to have that air of mystery around us, don’t we? 😛 Sorry guys! Our next read is going to be a surprise! We will meet you soon with our next book on The Nerdy Bookarazzi’s Buddy Reading Club

Meenu & Suchitra: Bye and Happy Reading Folks!

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  • Meenu Annadurai

    Meenu Annadurai is the founder & editor of The Nerdy Bookarazzi. Meenu is a Customer Specialist by day and a writer by night. She published her debut novel 'A Place called Home' with Half-Baked Beans which is now available on Amazon. She is insanely addicted to her bookshelf and super possessive about them. She is in a serious relationship with her current Book Boyfriend. [email protected] Annadurai Meenu
  • Suchitra Shekhar

    Suchitra is a Publishing Manager who loves spending quality time with her favourite fictional characters. Always lost in a reverie. Or in a book. Aren't they the same? She can be found knee-deep in mud on the weekends tending to her little garden. Suchitra is a people's person who loves making new friends. [email protected] Shekhar Suchitra