Zusak has a particular habit of using unusual words – typically transitive verbs – in describing scenery, in a way that seems to work.
A mountain range of rubble was written, designed, erected around her.
Houses were splashed from one side of the street to the other.
It’s beautiful language, and it seems to work. The story itself is gripping, even though there’s very little narrative tension. His characters, too, are beautifully rounded; there’s a depth and shading to the whole he creates that’s lovely to read.
Well worth it.