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|Comments on The Thief, by Megan Whalen Turner
|Posted by Happy Reader on 3/18/2008
|Every page got better. By the end of the book I was in love with Gen. He's a great hero and I can't wait to read more books about him. Sorry for Pol. I hope he shows up miraculously in a future Eugenides book.
|Posted by tutuirrioeoe on 12/9/2007
|I'm almost not sure what to make of The Thief as a work of speculative fiction. Certainly, it has magical elements, and takes place in a world that is not our own, but it reads more like a historical novel than most fantasies.
The inspiration comes from ancient Greek civilization, religion, politics, and geography, but none of these is taken in whole, and the technology used includes gunpowder, cannons, and pocket watches. The setting for the book is a land that is divided into three nations: Sounis, Eddis, Attolia. Sounis is ruled by a king who takes his name after the country, and who would very much like to rule the other two. In order to achieve his goal, he must forge an alliance with the queen of Eddis and her mountain-dwelling people, then use their combined military strength to overcome the harsh and beautiful queen of Attolia.
To do this, he must acquire Hamiathes' Gift, a stone that grants immortality and the throne of Eddis to anyone who possesses it. But the stone is lost, and to get it he needs a thief. An ideal one, Gen, is sitting right in his dungeons, imprisoned during an attempt to steal the king's signet ring.
The book is told in first person from Gen's viewpoint as he travels with Sounis' advisor, the Magus, Magus' two apprentices, and a battle-hardened soldier named Pol. Gen gets beat up and generally mistreated a lot at first, but gradually, as they grow closer to their destination, he forms an uneasy solidarity with his companions, and begins to tell them stories of the old gods over the evening fire. In some ways, The Thief is a book about faith: Faith in the old gods, the new gods, faith in political struggles, in armies, in knowledge, etc. But, mostly, it is a quest story, with the interactions between the characters on their journey forming the first half of the story.
The characters are well rendered and sympathetic, so the first half is certainly enjoyable, but the beginning does drag somewhat. The pace picks up as the journey rolls on, and once the action does get started, its well worth the wait. Another reason I might take half a star off is because Gen gets hurt. A lot. And since the novel is narrated in first-person, and Gen is a very lovable character, it was sometimes a little difficult to endure a couple lengthy scenes where he's in constant, intense pain, along with the many beatings and injuries he endures throughout the book. It's a small flaw, and might not bother some readers, but it had me wincing a few times.
This is a young adult novel, but I think it will make good reading for adults and children alike. If you enjoy Greek history, culture, or myth, or don't mind a lot of traveling and some slow parts, than I think you'll almost certainly enjoy it as I did, despite its flaws.
|Posted by Laura on 4/8/2006
|I wanted to keep reading!
|Posted by Jose Ramirez on 4/5/2006
|I havent finished reading it and I think it's the best bood i ever read in my life
|Posted by jacob tainor on 1/24/2006
|i loved it.
|Posted by Student on 1/9/2006
|I didn't really enjoy the book, but I was interested on how it made me think to get the point of the story.
|Posted by Marissa on 10/11/2005
|I loved it...i basically fell in love with Gen. Such a lively character, filled with surprises. I really dislked Ambiades...on the other hand Sophos was such a great character. So calm and noble its basically impossible for him to be a real person...i wish there was people like that on earth. I didnt like the part before the ending...about Pol and Ambiades, i mean Amb. deserved it...but Pol just didnt deserve that drastic ending! Loved the book!
|Posted by Ell Skipper on 6/8/2005
|Pardon the language up top, i thought this was an amazing book. At first the ending left me feeling put out......but it was good and the sequel was even better. I just wish she would write a third one.
|Posted by sara on 6/7/2005
|I believed that this book was pretty good. Gen was my favorite character because he was always ready to put up a fight. I also disagree with some of the other reviews because this book was not gay, or that boring.
|Posted by Me on 3/26/2005
|One I started reading it, I couldn't stop. I was sorry that it had to end. Gen rocks!
|Posted by Kaylin Stewart on 2/24/2005
|The book was so cool! My favorite characters out of the whole book were Gen,Pol,and Sophos.(Especially Sophos).
|Posted by Abby on 12/9/2004
|I loved this book, it was a great read!!