The Book Thief - Markus Zusak

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Unformatted text preview: e with my papa. You know, the one I stole from the fire that night.” The mayor’s wife nodded. If there was one thing about Liesel Meminger, her thieving was not gratuitous. She only stole books on what she felt was a need-to-have basis. Currently, she had enough. She’d gone through The Mud Men four times now and was enjoying her reacquaintance with The Shoulder Shrug. Also, each night before bed, she would open a fail-safe guide to grave digging. Buried deep inside it, The Standover Man resided. She mouthed the words and touched the birds. She turned the noisy pages, slowly. “Goodbye, Frau Hermann.” She exited the library, walked down the floorboard hall and out the monstrous doorway. As was her habit, she stood for a while on the steps, looking at Molching beneath her. The town that afternoon was covered in a yellow mist, which stroked the rooftops as if they were pets and filled up the streets like a bath. When she made it down to Munich Street, the book thief swerved in and out of the umbrellaed men and women —a rain-cloaked girl who made her way without shame from one garbage can to another. Like clockwork. “There!” She laughed up at the coppery clouds, celebrating, before reaching in and taking the mangled newspaper. Although the front and back pages were streaked with black tears of print, she folded it neatly in half and tucked it under her arm. It had been like this each Thursday for the past few months. Thursday was the only delivery day left for Liesel Meminger now, and it was usually able to provide some sort of dividend. She could never dampen the feeling of victory each time she found a Molching Express or any other publication. Finding a newspaper was a good day. If it was a paper in which the crossword wasn’t done, it was a great day. She would make her way home, shut the door behind her, and take it down to Max Vandenburg. “Crossword?” he would ask. “Empty.” “Excellent.” The Jew would smile as he accepted the package of paper an...
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