Wednesday, September 09, 2009

The Thief (Book 1, The Queen's Thief Series) by Megan Whalen Turner

"I can steal anything."

After Gen's bragging lands him in the king's prison, the chances of escape look slim. Then the king's scholar, the magus, needs the thief's skill for a seemingly impossible task -- to steal a hidden treasure from another land.

To the magus, Gen is just a tool. But Gen is a trickster and a survivor with a plan of his own.
My Thoughts:

I have been meaning to read this series for a really, really long time! It has been on my wish list, my buy next time I buy books list, and probably in both my virtual and physical shopping basket. I have just heard such great things about it and everyone has made the series seem like something I HAD to read. Well, I finally did! The fourth book has a release date, so people were talking about the series again. I finally decided to get it through the library and see what all the hype was about.

I wasn't sure in the beginning. I found it slow and I wasn't sure what I thought about the characters. I learned a valuable lesson, though! This is an example of why you should stick with a book even if you are not sure about it, because the ending made up for everything. Once you understand everything that you likely have missed, you will understand the brillance of the overall book. I was pretty impressed! Some I had figured out, but other stuff I missed entirely. It takes a lot to surprise me, so I am always excited when a book manages to throw a few things in that I wouldn't expect. In the end I also really liked the characters.

Gen is the main character. I get the impression he is the main character throughout the series, but that could wind up being wrong. He is not at all what you would expect, though. When the book opens he is wallowing in jail and you are starting to wonder if he really is great at what he does, but then his character starts to develop and you start to actually really like him. (I did, anyways!) Actually, I would think that Gen is going to grow on me and will grace a future list of favourite literary characters, but the jury is going to stay out until I read the rest of the books. I hate to make hasty decisions that I wind up regretting.

Part of my problem with writing this review is that in the time it has taken me to write it, I have read the sequel. That means that I might be talking more about how I feel about Gen from carrying on with the series than my impressions from the first book. You should probably keep that in mind. I am also suffering from 'I am really slow at reviewing books, so the books are not as clear in my mind as they should be'. I do know that even though this book grew on me by the end, I still wasn't really sure about the series. Then, I read the second book (which I will review soon) and I was even more impressed. If this keeps up I am going to love the third book!

Anyway, I should probably say a bit about what this book is about. In a nutshell it is the adventures of Gen. He claims he can steal anything, but he starts the book off in jail. Obviously, he is not as big a success as he claims! The kingdom where he is being held captive, though, seems to believe him even if they have caught him because they have big plans for him. Whether or not he can pull it off and be the great thief he is supposed to be is something you will have to read the book to find out. There might be a few surprises along the way, too. All in all, it was a fun book and I think the series does deserve the hype, even if I didn't love this book as much as others. I still think everyone should read it!

I am distracted today. This review took me FOREVER! I hope it makes sense and is worth it... Just one of those days where I have too much on my mind, I guess.

For example: I really want to learn how to ride a motorcycle. The cc bought one and I got to go for a ride with him last night. It was fun! Reminds me how much I want one...


  1. This series wasn't even close to being on my radar -- I haven't heard of it, or the author, before. But it looks like something I'll really like. Thanks for the review! And I think it's great, even if you are distracted. :)

  2. I have started this book three times. I keep hearing good things about it but haven't made it past the first 75 pages. Maybe, I will have to give it another chance. I will have to see what you say about book two. :)

  3. I had heard that the first wasn't as good and the second and third books were amazing. I'm planning on just getting the whole thing otherwise I might not read the rest! I'm glad you liked it though, I hope I will too.

  4. These books have been staring at me for years while they sit on my school library shelves. I keep meaning to read them but I never've changed that for me. I'm really going to make time to read this series!!

  5. (I drove a 360 Honda motorcycle for a number of years. There is good and bad .. of course a bad is trying to get home in the rain on one.. not fun!.. the good is parking is easy and you don't have to "back up" (no reverse) heh)

  6. Oh yay! I'm so glad you liked it. I can't decide whether I like the second or the third book better, it'll be interesting to read your take on it.

    Like you, I figured out a couple of twists, but not all - definitely not the last one.

    Once you understand everything that you likely have missed, you will understand the brilliance of the overall book.

    This is so true. Looking back at it, not a word is wasted.

  7. I forgot to say:

    @Krissi: It took me about two months to get past the first few chapters, and the book was just languishing on my bedside table. I finally sat down one day, determined to finish it so that I could put it away... I ended up ordering the second and third books as soon as I finished!

  8. I think I remember seeing this when I was in middle school (I worked in the school library between classes). It sounds like a good story and I tend to enjoy Newbery Honors just as much-sometimes more- than the winners. Thanks!

  9. Between you and Aarti, I'm really dying to read this series! I'm glad the ending made it worth it.

  10. Yay, I'm glad you got around to reviewing this one! I'm home and ready for a partner review when you are!


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