What are some themes in Markus Zusak's I Am the Messenger?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Markus Zusak's novel I Am the Messenger presents several themes worth exploring. These themes and others work together to reveal the complex understanding at the novel's end that Ed's is a message worthy to be shared. 

The first theme has to do with the disappointment that occurs when one realizes...

Unlock
This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial

Markus Zusak's novel I Am the Messenger presents several themes worth exploring. These themes and others work together to reveal the complex understanding at the novel's end that Ed's is a message worthy to be shared. 

The first theme has to do with the disappointment that occurs when one realizes their dreams may never be obtained. Ed learns over the course of the novel that one may not find true love, that the world can be harsh, and that things may not work out in the end. Disappointment plays out not only through Ed's journey of delivering the messages but through learning the backstory of his family and falling for Audrey.

A second theme of the novel is Ed's identity crisis.  At the start of the novel, Ed has few aspirations and takes little value in his life:

Inside, I laugh. Me? A saint? I list what I am. Taxi driver. Local deadbeat. Cornerstone of mediocrity. Sexual midget. Pathetic card player.

As he works to deliver the messages, Ed struggles to determine whether his identity is changing in a way that is valuable to him, or if he is simply becoming who the cards tell him to be.

 

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team