Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Review: I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak

Book: I Am The Messenger by Markus Zusak
Genre: YA... sort of... Fiction
Rating: A
For: Re-read for author appearance
From: I bought this one so long ago I can't remember where

As you know, I decided to re-read at least one Markus Zusak book before he came, now a week plus back. Since I'd already read The Book Thief twice, I went for a re-read of this one. Ah, what fun it is to do re-reads of his books because, even though you are just as much into the story, you can concentrate less on that and give more attention to the words and the unique style. Very fun.

This is the story of Ed Kennedy. He reminded me a lot of Holden Caulfield (I hadn't yet read Catcher in the Rye when I read this the first time around) only he's not as obnoxious. He is drifting, and aimless and feeling sorry for himself much of the time. He wonders what his purpose in life is and he feels bad that he hasn't made much of himself. He has wacky group of friends and they waste a lot of time playing cards and drinking and sitting around. His dad has died, and his mom seems to hate him. And the girl he loves thinks he's too good for her. Because really, he is a good guy.

Then one day the bank is robbed and he gets mixed up right in the middle of it and saves the day. After that, people suddenly are calling him a hero, and then, he begins to get mysterious notes in the mail, on playing cards. After some deciphering on his part, the notes lead him to many different people who appear to need his help in some way or another. Some in a big way, some in a small.

And the way he feels after helping these people changes his whole outlook on life.  And it's a fascinating thing to watch happen. I love the lesson to be learned from this book, which to me is, that in helping others you find yourself. And that everyone has a story and problems and we all need friends to get us through life.

For quotes from this book that I loved (just a few) I'll refer you back to this post. Just know, once again, I'm blown away by the writing. Simple as that.

Bottom line: I loved it... again!

P.S. Be warned, there is quite a bit of language up front (no F words) but I noticed two things this time around... First, I must be getting desensitized to this because it didn't bother me as bad as the first time through, and second, the bad language seems to disappear as the book goes on which to me is sort of a suggestion as to how Ed himself improves. Nice.

Other Reviews:

My first review way back when I first started this blog.
Book Harbinger
Kay's Bookshelf
Fluttering Butterflies


  1. Oh, goody! I've been waiting for you to review this one, as I've never read it, and I wanted your take on it.
    And now I'll go put it on my library queue.

  2. I loved this one too. I think your description of Holden, but not as annoying, is spot on.



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