The Book Thief

Describe in some detail what has happened to cause ‘the longest three minutes in Hubermann History’ (The Visitor, p. 353).


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The longest three minutes in Huberman history were when the Nazi's came to check people's basements to see if they were deep enough to protect the people of the town from the air raids. Really they were looking for people being hidden. Of course Max is hiding in the basement. Liesel, who is out on the street playing soccer, sees them and wonders how to go home and tell Hans without seeming suspicious. Liesel accidentally collides with another boy, and Rudy runs to get Hans, who carries Liesel home. Before Hans and Rosa have a chance to figure out how to hide Max, who has since been hidden again in the basement, the party members arrive. They inspect the basement alone, find nothing, and leave. Hans, Rosa, and Liesel go downstairs and find Max hiding behind the drop sheets holding a pair of rusty scissors. He apologizes.