For years, I have been telling people that The Book Thief by Markus Zusak is my favourite book and that Markus Zusak is one of my favourite authors. Looking back, I probably shouldn’t have claimed that Zusak was my favourite author when I’d only read one of his books. However after reading The Messenger I can happily say that he has lived up to the hype!
After accidentally stopping a bank robber escaping, Ed Kennedy finds himself receiving cryptic messages written on playing cards in the mail. Each card gives hints to three people who’s life he must change in someway.
I don’t know what I was expecting going into this novel, but after only a few chapters I was hooked. Zusak’s writing is superb. Both the premise and the ‘twist’ at the end of the novel really hit the mark for me. The characterisation in this novel was absolutely on point and I found myself unable to put this novel down. He flawlessly creates relatable characters that are witty, funny and at moments touching.
The first half of this book was brilliant and gripping and perfectly executed. The relationship Ed shares with his friends and family is super relatable and easy to read.
Unfortunately, as the story went on I did find my attention wavering. This wasn’t so much to do with the writing as the fact that I predicted a few things, and found myself slumping until I was able to push past that and find content that I found as exciting again. But I definitely did find it picking up towards the end, although the ‘twist’ was slightly abrupt, I really enjoyed it and it wasn’t what I was expecting!
At the end of the day, I don’t think it quite lived up to The Book Thief but it is an extremely unique book (Zusak’s specialty) that I would definitely recommend if you are looking for a warm-hearted contemporary read.