Book Review - The Book Thief

From Goodreads:

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Narrated by Death, Markus Zusak's groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a young foster girl living outside of Munich in Nazi Germany. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she discovers something she can't resist- books. Soon she is stealing books from Nazi book-burnings, the mayor's wife's library, wherever they are to be found.

With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, Liesel learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids, as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement.

I can't say enough wonderful things about this book. It is not only the best book I've read this year, but it also makes the top ten list of my all-time favorites. I will enjoy reading it again and again.

Death is a heart-wrenching narrator and the foreshadowing in this tale is some of the best I've read. It intrigued me that our MC is a German girl, as I have so rarely seen that perspective in stories surrounding World War II. The supporting cast of characters explode from the pages as Zusak expertly weaves a tapestry of love, hope and the darkest despair.

At its heart The Book Thief is about the power of words, so I wanted to finish this review with an alphabetical list of the ones I would use to describe a story that in my opinion is a YA masterpiece.

Absorbing, Brilliant, Colorful, Descriptive, Elegant, Fragile, Gracious, Haunted, Innocent, Judicious, Kindhearted, Lyrical, Meaningful, Necessary, Outstanding, Personal, Quiet, Respectful, Sympathetic, Tearful, Unnerving, Valiant, Willful, Xanthocomic, Youthful, and Zoetic.

I urge you to pick this one up. You won't be disappointed.

On The Campaign Trail!

Want to connect with other writers that share your struggles and triumphs? Want to find that perfect crit partner or beta reader? Then you need to check out Rachel Harrie's fabulous Platform Building Campaign. This is my third year and I can tell you from experience that it is well worth joining. But hurry, you only have until August 31st to sign up!

WriteOnCon was wonderful. I'm still trying to catch up on all of the fabulous posts and vlogs. This one by author Alan Silverberg was especially touching. Go on and read it and see if it doesn't make you tear up.  This vlog by author Beth Revis on perseverance was inspirational too. You can view all the archives at the main site www.WriteOnCon.com.

We have a new anchorman on our local Fox affiliate station and he sure doesn't look like Ron Burgandy. Can you say, hello gorgeous?

I saw The Help last weekend and I can tell you it was just a smidge less enjoyable than the book, although the casting was spot on. It's been a while since we've been to a crowded theater, and even longer since people clapped during the credits.

There are several things I'm excited about that are rapidly approaching:

Halloween (I so want to try this)
The Walking Dead on AMC
Do you see a pattern here?

What things are you looking forward to?


WriteOnCon is coming!

The kids are back in school on Monday and I am all geared up for this year's festivities. I'll be taking the next week off so I can immerse myself in the awesome. See you on August 23rd!

Be there or be square!

Things That Make Me Smile

Thought I would share some things that made me feel warm and fuzzy over the past weekend.

What a terrific organization. I'm saving my money to buy one of these little beauties and plan to put it at the entrance to our subdivision. 

The eighties!
No, not the decade although it will always hold a special place in my heart.
We're talking high temps for the next ten days! Although I'm sure summer will rear it's ugly head once more, I pledge to enjoy the outdoors for a while without fear of sticking to the pavement.

And last but not least,
I have rearranged my bedroom and now have room for a much needed bookshelf. Imagine the possibilities...

So what things have made you smile this week?

Blogoversary Winners!

Thanks so much for the overwhelming response and well-wishes for my Blogoversary.  I LOVE all of you.

Please help me congratulate the winners:

Miranda H.
The Duff, Extraordinary (ARC) and Cryer's Cross (ARC)

Donna S.
Across The Universe and The Limit (ARC)

Julie F. 
Trapped and The First Five Pages

Jeanne F. 
Brother/Sister (ARC) and On Writing

Erin S.
Awaken (ARC) and Daughters Break The Rules (ARC) 

Brooke D. 
You and the pre-order of Lola And The Boy Next Door 

You have all been contacted by email. I hope you enjoy the books as much as I did.

Have a wonderful weekend. I plan to be writing and reading. How about you? 

Novel Films Blogfest Part Deux

WARNING: The second part of my Novel Films Blogfest may cause severe shock to some writer friends of mine. Just remember these are my opinions, so feel free to disagree.

From my list of twenty novels to films from yesterday there are three movie versions I thought were better *gasp* than the books.

 A Simple Twist Of Fate based on the novel Silas Marner by George Eliot. The novel was quite a slog to get through with lots and lots of telling and the pace of a turtle. But I found the movie charming and it makes me cry every time I see it.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman. I almost put this book down fifty pages in because I kept nodding off and although it did liven up after that, the movie is one of my favorites. I love the actors, especially Mandy Patinkin as Inigo Montoya. He is quoted in my house at least once a week, "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."

Silver Bullet based on the short story "Cycle Of The Werewolf" by Stephen King. I chose this one not so much because the movie was great, but because the written version read more like an essay than a narrative and I thought the film did a good job of fleshing it out in places.

There are three other movies from my list that I think are at least as good as the books.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss. Classic. And who can resist Boris Karloff as a narrator?

The Shawshank Redemption based on Stephen King's short story "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption". The short story was wonderful and the movie was everything I'd imagined while reading it.

Stand By Me based on another of Stephen King's short stories, "The Body".  The movie actually used dialogue straight from the book in several key scenes. Why mess with brilliance?

There are a couple of movies that I am anxiously awaiting to be released on DVD so I can compare them to their written counterparts, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë and Water For Elephants by Sara Gruen.. I am also looking forward to The Hunger Games due out next year based on the book by the same name by Suzanne Collins.

Are there any novel films you're looking forward to?

My Baker's Dozen Blogoversary Giveaway ends tomorrow at midnight so if you haven't entered yet, please do. I'll be announcing the six winners on Thursday, August 4th.

Novel Films Blogfest

Thanks to the lovely and talented Madeleine of Scribble And Edit for hosting this fun blogfest.

Today, I'm going to list the novels that I have also seen as films, and tomorrow I'll be back to tell you if any of these films lived up to their original written form.

The name of the novel is listed first and if the film's name is different, I've listed that as well.

  1. Angels And Demons by Dan Brown
  2. The DaVinci Code by Dan Brown
  3. The Twilight Series by Stephanie Meyer
  4. The Mist by Stephen King
  5. Bridge To Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
  6. Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
  7. The Cider House Rules by John Irving
  8. Diary Of A Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
  9. How The Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr, Seuss
  10. Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates
  11. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
  12. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  13. Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane
  14. "Cycle Of The Werewolf" by Stephen King / Silver Bullet
  15. Silas Marner by George Eliot / A Simple Twist Of Fate
  16. "The Body" by Stephen King / Stand By Me
  17. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
  18. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  19. "Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption" by Stephen King / The Shawshank Redemption
  20. Watchers by Dean Koontz

I'm sure there are some I've forgotten about. Perhaps one of you will jog my memory as I visit the other participating blogs. And I'll admit, as a tease, a few of these films were as good as or better than the book in my opinion.  Can you guess which ones? 

If you haven't entered my Blogoversary Baker's Dozen Giveaway, you have precious little time left.

See you tomorrow!
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