Mayor Ivy R. Taylor and the San Antonio Public Library (SAPL) are continuing the Mayor’s Book Club reading initiative with her spring 2016 book choice “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak. The Mayor’s Book Club, which started in 2014, is a community wide read aimed at cultivating a community experience through reading and discussion.
“The Book Thief,” which inspired the 2013 film, is the story of Liesel Meminger, a nine-year-old German orphan who is sent to live with Hans and Rosa Hubermann in the town of Molching, shortly before World War II. Liesel begins stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist—books. With the help of her foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids, as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement. The book explores the many complicated relationships in Liesel’s life, and her struggles with the politics of the Nazis during the Holocaust. Among other themes, “The Book Thief” explores the power of words and propaganda, humanity and dehumanization, as well as abandonment and survivor’s guilt.
“During the months of March, April and May, I encourage everyone to read ‘The Book Thief’ by Markus Zusak, and to participate in discussion and events that focus on the themes of the book at their local branch library,” said Mayor Ivy R. Taylor. “I especially encourage young adults and their parents and families to read this book together. Reading as a community provides opportunities for people of different backgrounds and stages in life to sit down and discuss ideas that are important to all of us. Reading is a way to learn, a way to find out where we belong in the world, a way to explore. I encourage everyone to get involved and to actively participate in this community conversation.”
Originally published in March 2006, “The Book Thief” received immediate critical acclaim and rose to the top of the New York Times bestseller list, where it has remained for the last ten years.
“We look forward to continuing our partnership with Mayor Taylor to promote reading in San Antonio,” said Ramiro S. Salazar, Director of the San Antonio Public Library. “Mayor Taylor’s spring book choice is particularly poignant as we recognize Holocaust Remembrance Day in May. It is a reminder of the importance of participating in community discussion about topics that affect us all.”
Copies of “The Book Thief” can be checked out from any Library branch, or digitally at mysapl.org. The book is available in both English and Spanish. For more information about the Mayor’s Book Club, call 210-207-2500 or visit mysapl.org/mbc.
Public Information Officer