The Book Thief
“From the toolbox the boy took out, of all things, a teddy bear. He reached in through the torn windshield and placed it on the pilot's chest”
The quote is said near the end of Part Nine, after Rudy and Liesel find the enemy fighter pilot in his crashed plane and Rudy gives the pilot the teddy bear as he dies. Liesel and Rudy have become best friends and they share all of their secrets. Rudy is now aware of how Liesel borrows books from the mayor’s wife and on one occasion they received cookies as Liesel would decide on a new book to borrow. But March comes in and an air raid occurs at that time Liesel is at Frau Holtzapfel home she refuses to leave and Michael and Rosa are unable to get her out. Liesel tells her that if she doesn't come to the shelter, Liesel will stop coming to read to her and she will have lost her only friend; Frau Holtzapfel still refuses, so the others leave her for the Fielder’s' basement. Michael regrets leaving his mother, but Frau Holtzapfel arrives. The raid is long, and Liesel reads to the group to entertain them. After the raid, Rudy's younger sister notices a small fire and smoke coming from near the river. Rudy, with his toolbox, heads there through the forest, and Liesel follows. There is a downed plane. Rudy takes the teddy bear from his toolbox and places it on the pilot. The pilot thanks him in English and dies. Death arrives to carry the man's soul away and recognizes Liesel; Death is convinced that Liesel recognized its presence as well.
The overall importance of this quote is that Death has previously seemed practically human because of his sympathy for the people in his story and how personable he seems, but here he establishes himself as being apart from humanity. Death sees humanity as something evil but yet he sees some sympathy for some. Throughout the book death states how some deaths take a little longer than others but when he sees Liesel and Rudy trying to help the wounded soldier let go to...
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