Lit Analysis the Book Thief
Stories can provide connections, different perspectives, and morals/lessons; despite its capacity for serving good and evil, telling stories is proven to be the redeeming quality of human beings. The story of “The Word Shaker” is Max’s version of a fairy tale, including both Liesel and himself into all of it. Its dedicated to the power Liesel’s words have had over Max’s life. It’s a tale of how words can save people just as much as they can harm them. As Max states, “the best word shakers were the ones who understand the true power of words.
They were the ones who could climb the highest.
One such word shaker was a small, skinny girl. She was renowned as the best word shaker of her region because she knew how powerless a person could be without words” (Zusak 446). The Word Shaker story specifies the friendship between Max and Liesel. Liesel was once without words, therefore, she understands better than most people just how much power words can truly have. Liesel uses her words’ power for good.
Saving the tree that has grown from her tear reflects the tear that she once cried on Max’s cheek when he was sick.
Despite the fact that the little girl is only one person, she’s able to save the tree when Hitler and his soldiers come to cut it down. She holds up the tree, symbolizing how she was able to hold up Max when he lived in her basement, and in addition, it shows how Liesel and Max rely on each other. When Max comes for her and the tree falls down, it knocks down other trees in the forest, which represents the other places where hateful word shakers have stood.
Through this short and meaningful story, Max has helped Liesel, making her more confident and even more appreciative of the importance of words.
The story has connected them in a way that nothing else could have, and Max’s novel shows how words can be powerful for good and evil. It demonstrates how a single person can have such a major impact and can stand up against Hitler and save a jew who is despised by his entire country. Stories can create connections and furthermore, build friendships.
Max and Liesel’s friendship is full of love which was something hard to find in a time filled with such hatred. One might think that nothing good came about because of Nazi Germany, however, Liesel and Max’s friendship contradicts that.
They find themselves living together due to horrific events that have occurred to their families. Liesels father was taken away and killed or imprisoned by the Nazis, which cut off most of their family’s income leading their family into poverty. The poverty became so extreme that er mother had to send her off to a foster family. Max’s father was killed during World War I, and the rest of his family had recently been taken away by the Nazis. Max and Liesel are so valuable to each other because they can talk about the terrible nightmares they both have and open up to each other. As Max describes, “The best standover man I’ve ever known is not a man at all.
. ” (Zusak 235). Max and Liesel share similar experiences and problems, therefore, they can relate to each other and share a deep connection.
Liesel would never be able to share such problems with another one of her close friends such as Rudy, because he would simply not understand how painful her nightmares are. Max and Liesel both need each other and their friendship. It is sacred to them.
They lean on each other a lot throughout tough times. Both Max and Liesel are people of few words. Their whole relationship is based on each others similar personalities and pasts. Their entire relationship depends on each others unspoken understanding and trust for each other.