The Book Thief
The Book Thief Chapter 53 Summary
Champagne and Accordions
- It's still the summer of 1942. Molching is preparing for the possibility of a bomb attack.
- Hans gets a little work painting people's window blinds black.
- Liesel goes with him on the jobs.
- He's usually paid with a snack, a hot drink, or a smoke.
- Later Death will read about Liesel's memories of the summer in the book she will write.
- As he works, he tells her stories, taking time-out to play the accordion.
- Liesel is really interested in how her Papa mixes paint. The paint comes in a block and is rolled out with a thick bottle – a champagne bottle is best – and then turned into the liquid paint we are used to seeing.
- One day, when they are painting at a wealthy home, Hans and Liesel are invited to the kitchen, and Liesel has her first taste of champagne.
- Later, he asks Liesel not to tell Rosa.
- She ask if it's OK to tell Max. Hans says that it is.
- Later, when Liesel writes the book of her life, she'll "[vow] that she [will] never drink champagne again" (53.25). There's no way it can ever be as delicious as the first time.
- She feels the same way about the accordion.
- Sometimes, the sound of Hans playing makes her taste champagne.
- She's really having a splendid time.
- But, the bombs are being dropped like crazy – suffering was on the way.
- Now, we are given the first word from The Complete Duden Dictionary and Thesaurus, which this Part of The Book Thief is named after: "Zufriedenheit – Happiness" (53.38). (Read the book for the definition!)