books i love: the book thief

Friday, August 29, 2014

For those who know me, are probably aware of my obsession with books. Like really obsessed. Call me crazy book lady, and I'll see it as a compliment! Say I'm weird because I can't let go of my paperback and go digital, simply because I wish to smell the paper with each turn of a page, and I'll love you forever. I even went to school for book publishing and my very first internship was at the fictional department of a publishing house, and even though it was boring as hell, the thought of having my own library to pick and choose from was marvelous. Plus, the idea of having to dodge piles and piles of books on the floor just to reach my little corner desk, made me feel all kinds of happy. 

There is just something magical about them. How every single page is perfectly bound together. How close you can feel to someone that doesn't even exist. It's pretty powerful, in my opinion. I am the kind of reader that gets so emotionally involved with the characters that the moment the book ends, I miss them dearly. Anyways.... I wanted to share with you the prologue of my all time favorite book, The Book Thief. Even though, it has become well known due to the amazing movie, Markus Zusak's writing never gets old. And this was definitely the best first few pages of any book I have ever read. 

Hope you enjoy the read!     

"First the colors. Then the humans. That's usually how I see things. Or at least, how I try.

Here is a small fact: You are going to die.

   I am in all truthfulness attempting to be cheerful about this whole topic, though most people find themselves hindered in believing me, no matter my protestations. Please, trust me. I most definitely can be cheerful. I can be amiable. Agreeable. Affable. And that's only the A's. Just don't ask me to be nice. Nice has nothing to do with me.

- Of course, and introduction.
A beginning.
Where are my manners?

   I could introduce myself properly, but it's really not necessary. You will know me well enough and soon enough, depending on a diverse range of variables. It suffices to say that at some point in time, i will be standing over you, as genially as possible. Your soul will be in my arms. A color will be perched on my shoulder. I will carry you gently away.
   At that moment, you will be lying there (I rarely find people standing up). You will be caked in your own body. There might be a discovery; a scream will dribbled down the air. The only sound I'll hear after that will be my own breathing, and the sound of the smell, of my footsteps.
   The question is, what color will everything be at the moment I come for you? What will the sky be saying?    Personally, I like the chocolate-colored sky. Dark dark chocolate. People say it suits me. I do, however, try to enjoy every color I see - the whole spectrum. A billion or so flavors, none of them quite the same, and a sky to slowly suck on. It takes the edge off the stress. It helps me relax.

    As I've been alluding to, my one saving grace is distraction. It keeps me sane. It helps me cope, considering the length of time I've been performing this job. The problem is, who could ever replace me? Who could step in while I take a break in your stock-standard resort-style vacation destination whether it be tropical or of the ski trip variety? The answer, of course, is nobody, which has prompted me to make a conscious, deliberate decision - to make distraction my vacation. Needles to say, I vacation in increments. In colors.
    Still, it's possible that you might be asking, why does he even need a vacation? What does he need distraction from?
    Which brings me to my next point.
    It's the leftover humans.
    The survivors.
    They are the ones I can't stand to look at. Although in many occasions, I still fail. I deliberately seek out the colors to keep my mind off them, but know and then, I witness the ones that are left behind, the crumbling among the jigsaw puzzle of realization, despair, and surprise. They have punctured hearts. They have beaten lungs."      


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