Fear is a Great Tool
"I was afraid of who might be there when I woke up" (227). The Jewish population was terrified of what might happen to them if they encountered one of Hitler's German soldiers. Max shows how the Jewish population feared for their lives as they hid from the horrible German Army. Many Jews who were not fortunate enough to stay hidden were taken either to a concentration camp or a death camp and treated horribly.
A real world example of fear being used as a tool would be around the same time of the "Book Thief" but just in a different part of the world. Anne Frank's story is very similar to the story of Max's. Anne Frank was hidden in attic that was not big enough for her family and then they could only walk around at certain times of the day. Max and Anne were both at the mercy of the people taking care of them but, if the people who were watching them were caught, their fate would be the same as the Jews.
Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures
"They're all too fat anyway (162)." Often times when a country is war torn there are two types of people: the poor starving, struggling to live people and the rich people who's lives have not changed by the war. Liesel and Rudy are in the first group where they have to steal to survive and help their families. Rudy and Liesel have resorted to stealing things off of people and not just their property in order to prosper.
During World War 2 the people of Germany were either really rich or really poor and lived in poverty. Hitler was obviously one of wealth because he was the dictator of the Nazi party. Hitler had a mansion used only for expensive champagne and wine. While his people are starving, dying and living in poverty Hitler had a whole mansion just for expensive alcohol.
Cherish the One's you Love
In the section "End of the World Part One" it explains how while Liesel was in the basement working on her book the Allied forces bombed Himmel Street. Liesel's entire family was wiped out in the bombing while she was safe in the basement working hard.
A real world example of cherishing the ones you love would be with the rapper Eminem. He was abandoned by his dad at a very young age and his mom raised him to never give up or stop chasing his dreams. When his mom passed he was not sad, he celebrated her life and acknowledged that she is the reason for who he is today.
Summative Theme: Fear is a Great Tool