Topics: The Book Thief, Reading, Orthography Pages: 1 (368 words) Published: April 6, 2013
Words have shaped all of the accomplishments and the failures of the human race throughout history and they will continue to shape all of the events into the future. They shape major events and minor events but without them, we would all be nothing. Words imitate all of the shade of passion. The influence of words can help and hinder, as well as teach us right from wrong. Words are powerful in every way they are used. In Markus Zusak’s novel The Book Thief, the importance of words has a great deal of effects on many of the characters.

When you are born you are taught how to speak, no matter what language. However, in some countries the literacy rate is very low and the truth is that many people could not read or write to save their life. But for Liesel reading and writing is exactly what saved her. When Liesel came to Himmel Street she could not read or write at all. As her foster father, Hans Hubermann took it upon himself to teach the little girl. For Liesel and Hans this was the start of a beautiful relationship. When Liesel would wake up from a nightmare, Hans would be there holding her and keeping her calm with the power of words. After seeing and hearing Hans read, Liesel decided that she wanted to be able to read. After much practice Liesel was able to read and write. It was a gift to her and just as Hans had done to her, Liesel used words to keep other calm as well. “Rosa released her, and for comfort, to shut out the din of the basement, Liesel opened one of her books and began to read. The book on top of the pile was The Whistler and she spoke it aloud to help her concentrate.” (381) Liesel started to read for her benefit, but as it turned out, the words soothed everyone else as well. It kept her neighbours calm and occupied during the air raids. Every time there was an air raid alert Liesel would grab her books and head to the shelter, where she would begin to read aloud to help pass the time.
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