- I enjoyed reading a story about what was going on with regular families on a regular street in a regular neighborhood in Germany during World War II. I've done so much reading of similar stories with characters (fictional and nonfictional) from Allied countries that it was a nice change to read about what was happening on German soil. The only other book I've read about Germany from that time period that I can remember is The Good German and it took place just after the war in Potsdam with plenty of Allied soldiers present.
- I was struck by Hans Hubermann, foster father to the main character, Liesel Meminger. Hans has a heart of gold and hasn't become hardened to the harsh world around him as everyone else has. His ability to see past all the things that divide us as people and see people as what they truly are is a gift, especially considering the time in which he lived. Thanks to Hans, I will probably think of him for the rest of my life each time I see or hear an accordion.
- In places, The Book Thief is extremely difficult to read because of all the injustices the characters are subjected to. Though I've done lots of World War II reading, this really gave me a new perspective of the awfulness and inhumanity of that time.