Death In Liesel's Death, The Book Thief

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Death, The Book Thief’s narrator, keeps the reader constantly focused on mortality. Set during World War II, death continuously intersects with many of those that lived in Germany. This novel shows that death can come at any time, in any number of ways, and is a ruthless and inevitable part of war, and of life. The narrator of the novel, Death himself, has the task of separating the souls from their bodies and carrying those souls away. Because of the war and the Holocaust going on, many deaths of innocent people occur. Death also personally touches every character in the story. He is something that no one can escape and all the characters in the story show an understanding of this concept. At the beginning of the novel, the narrator, Death,…show more content…
Liesel’s younger brother Werner dies at the start of the story and his death haunts her throughout. Death narrates “With one eye open, one still in a dream, the book thief, also known as Liesel Meminger could see that her younger brother, Werner, was now sideways and dead. His blue eyes stared at the floor. Seeing nothing.” (21-22). This image of her dying brother will haunt Liesel for many years and come to her every night as she sleeps. The death of her brother is a very traumatic experience that affects her life in many ways. Later in the book, Liesel’s foster parent Hans gets drafted into the military. He does not die there, as he ends up surviving because of someone else. Death comments “it kills me sometimes, how people die.” (70). This is said sarcastically. This is his comment on Reinhold Zucker, the man who dies after forcing Hans to swap seats with him, and thus, unwittingly, saving Hans’s life. This shows how death can happen at any time in a number of ways and the narrator Death’s views on how they do. Near the end, there is a bombing and Liesel’s best friend Rudy dies. Throughout the book you can see their relationship grow and how they started having feelings for each other although Liesel wouldn’t admit it. Rudy would bring up a kiss multiple times in the book, but Liesel says she would never kiss him. When Rudy dies, Liesel finally kisses him. Death says “He’d have been glad to witness her kissing his dusty, bomb hit lips.” (220). This is one of the saddest parts of the novel. Liesel misses out on kissing Rudy when he’s alive, and kisses him instead when he’s dead. It shows how death can be unexpected and can happen in any way at any
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