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Liesel and Rudy - the Book Thief

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Melissa Russell

Mrs. Altenbernd

English 60

08 April 2014

Liesel and Rudy

In the story, “The Book Thief” The two main characters, Liesel and Rudy, both are confronted by many challenges living through the time period of the Nazi’s. Though their friendship was not perfect, they were a good team and brought out the best qualities of each other. But throughout the book it shows how these characters are both different and the same.

During the beginning of the story, we find out the Liesel is a foster child and her new home is with Rosa and Hans Hubermann. She starts school and soon befriends the neighborhood kid, Rudy. He shows her how to play soccer and we find out that she is a great athlete. She plays the position of goalie and even blocks Rudy’s goals, which no other kid has done before. Once their friendship starts to grow we find out that she is a bit of a trouble maker. She ends up stealing books which back then this was a very illegal crime and would have ended in her death. So from ashes at the book burnings, she is then taught how to read by her stepfather, Hans. Liesel is the type of girl who is very bold and has the guts to do things that normal kids might be more timid to do. We see this later in the book, when we find out that the Hubermann’s are housing a Jew in their basement for more than a year. Liesel is one of the first in her household to go down into the basement and to befriend the Jew whose name is Max. Even though Liesel is a foster child she still grows up with all the adventures and trials that any child in that time period would face.

Then there is Liesel’s best friend, Rudy, who lives a few houses down from her. He is also very athletic. He is captain of the soccer team, and that means that he can tell every player what position they are going to play. He also is a fast runner who wins every race that he enters. Like Liesel, Rudy has a knack at getting himself into trouble. One example is when he starts stealing food from the local farms. He joins a band of kids who go around town and the neighboring cities to steal food for themselves and their families. While in this band, he convinces Liesel to join so that marks the start of some of their adventures. Rudy is also the type of kid that sometimes is too bold and doesn’t consider the consequences. When he joined the Nazi group for kids, they had to do a lot of physical activities and have the demeanor of the military. This means that when the sergeant asks you a question, your response should not be sarcastic, which Rudy did a lot. Considering that Liesel and him both grew up on the same street, they ended up going through very similar situations.

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