Throughout the beginning of “The Book Thief” by Markus Zusak, we see Rosa Hubermann as a mean and abusive mother to Liesel. She hits Liesel with her spoons and always scolds and reprimands her. But by the end of the novel, we see another side of Rosa that we have never seen before. We begin to see her act caring and loving towards others and realize that she has been a kind person since the beginning.
Rosa first shows her kind side when Max first arrives at the Hubermann’s home. On page 211, it states “What shocked Liesel most was the change in her mama. Whether it was the calculated way in which she divided the food, or the considerable muzzling of her notorious mouth, or even the gentler expression on her cardboard face, one thing was becoming clear. An attribute of Rosa Hubermann. She was a good woman for a crisis.” She is uncommonly kind to Max, by sharing food with him and helping to care for him the best she can.
During this novel, Rosa acts as if she does not like people, including her husband, Hans Hubermann. She swears and yells at him most of the time. But when Hans has to go into war, she acts differently. On pages 428 to 429, it states “It took longer than she expected for her eyes to adjust, and when they did, there was no denying the fact that Rosa Hubermann was sitting on the edge of the bed with her husband’s accordion tied to her chest.” This quote shows us that even though Rosa acted hostile towards Hans throughout most of the book, she actually loved him and cared for him and wanted him to come home alive after the war.
At the end of the book, when a bomb hits Himmel Street and death takes her away, death himself acknowledges that Rosa Hubermann was a kind and good person. On page 532, it states “Make no mistake, the woman had a heart. She had a bigger one than people would think. There was a lot in it, stored up, high in miles of hidden shelving. Remember that she was the woman with the instrument strapped to her body in the long, moon-slit night. She was a Jew feeder without a question in the world on a man’s first night in Molching. And she was an arm reacher, deep into a mattress, to deliver a sketchbook to a teenage girl.” This quote directly states that Rosa Hubermann had a heart and was a kind person.
By the end of this novel, the readers can clearly tell that Rosa Hubermann is a good person. She may have acted hostile towards people, but she also the same woman that risked her life in order to help a Jew, missed her husband dearly, and even death admitted that she was overall a good person.
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