Liesel Meminger is a nine-year-old girl living in Nazi Germany in 1939. Her mother, who is a Communist, is taken away and forced to give up her two lovely children, Liesel and her brother, Werner Meminger, for adoption. As they are on the train to Molching, Her brother dies, and the narrator, Death, sees her for the first time. They dig Werner's grave by the train track. At the funeral, Liesel picks up a book called The Grave Digger's Handbook accidentally dropped by the funeral people that work there. Liesel is so interested to the book, despite not being able to read or write. She brings it with her to her new home. she arrives at her foster house in a distraught state. She forms closer relationship with her new father, Hans Hubermann, and her mother, Rosa. Hans is a painter and accordion player, and
Rosa does washing for a few local customers. Hans teaches Liesel to read and write. Liesel makes friends including a boy named Rudy Steiner. Rudy and Liesel have spend together a lot , most of which involve stealing . Rudy keeps asking Liesel for a kiss, but she doesn't want to kiss him.
As the story continues, we meet Max Vandenburg, a Jew who is being hidden by a friend.
Max has been given Hans
s copy of a book called Mein Kampf with a key hidden inside it.
Max then travels successfully to Molching. Using the key, he opens the door to Liesel
s house on and meets Hans in the kitchen. . Hans takes Max in, because during World War I,
Max's father, Erik, saved Hans's life. For months, then years, Mama, Papa, and Liesel hide
Max in their basement. Slowly, they become close friends. When Max became more sick,
Liesel read a book to him, and talked to him to help him get well. Max also writes a story for
Liesel in a book named The Standover Man.One by one, Rosa
s washing customers have fired her. When the last one, the mayor and his wife Ilsa, fires Rosa as well, Liesel is angry.
Liesel and Rudy decide to steal books from the mayor
s house. The mayor and his wife have a library and, in the past, Ilsa has allowed Liesel to read books in the library during her visits to the house. She fear the Nazis would catch her with books.
Early in 1942, Max becomes sick and collapses. Liesel begins to read to Max, and he finally recovers.The Nazis come to to inspect the houses to see if any could be used as air-raid shelters. Liesel creates a diversion in the form of a injury to warn Parents that the Nazis are coming. The family has only a little of time to tell Max to hide. They can't find him, and their basement is judged to be too shallow for a shelter. She helps her Papa paint when the order comes to blacken windows for the nighttime air raids. Together they black paint people's window blinds to keep out the light.. During this time, Rudy has become a good athlete. At a
Hitler Youth sporting event, he wins three gold medals.Once more, Liesel steals a book from the mayor
s house. Shortly after, Rudy takes her to look at the window of the mayor
They see that a book leans again it, ready for theft and Liesel cannot resist. The book is a dictionary. She opens the window and the book falls out. As she and Rudy ride their bikes away, Liesel looks back and sees that Ilsa is watching in the window. She waves, and Liesel
waves back. Liesel finds a note from Ilsa inside of the dictionary. It says that she knows about the thievery and that it is okay for Liesel to take the books, but that she should come to the front door next time.When the first air-raid sirens go off, late at night, the family goes down the street to the Fiedlers
house. Max, left behind, sneaks to the window. Liesel reads to the people in the shelter.
A convoy of Jews is forced to walk through Molching, and Liesel sees the parade of sick, starving wretches on their way to Dachau, concentration camp. An old man stumbles in the street, and Hans gives him a piece of bread. They