Death's Worth A Thousand Words

Decent Essays
year for the ages”-1942, he confides in the reader as follows: “Forget the scythe, Goddamn it, I needed a broom . . . [and] a vacation . . . They say that war is death’s best friend, but I must offer you a different point of view on that one. To me, war is like the new boss who expects the impossible. He stands over your shoulder repeating one thing, incessantly: “Get it done, get it done.” So you . . . get the job done. The boss, however, does not thank you. He asks for more “ (Zusak 307-309). Throughout the world-weary rant, despite being clearly distressed, Death remains a casual tone and practices “gallows humour”, effectively “deflect(ing) attention away from [his] anguish” (Zimberoff) at being forced to partake in such carnage. By adopting a lighthearted voice for Death, Zusak is able…show more content…
As he constantly “expects [humans] to be more or less than they are” (Zusak 4), Death makes a point of noticing the “multitude of shades and intonations” that saturate the sky as he comes to collect the dead; they help him “cope” (Zusak 4) with “the incongruity of what he sees” (Coats 328). In an interview, Zusak remarks that the metaphor of colours used throughout the book is “particularly appropriate” considering that “Death [is] almost breathing colours in to distract himself from all the misery that surrounds him. That in a way [is] a metaphor for the idea that this book is about people doing beautiful things in a really ugly time. And that’s…show more content…
Death is not a human, only humanlike. In the word of Zusak himself: “Death [is] the missing part of us” (Zusak 560). The almost-humanlike characteristics of Death scattered throughout The Book Thief
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