A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Thief is the first volume in an acclaimed historical fantasy series by Megan Whalen Turner. It received a Newbery award when originally published in 1996. The level of violence is low -- a few prison beatings and a deadly swordfight. Cursing is limited to a dozen or so uses of "damn," "hell," and "gods damn."
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What's the story?
As THE THIEF begins, Eugenides is taken from his prison cell and embarks on a reluctant journey in search of an invaluable treasure known as Hamiathe's Gift. A stone dipped in the Waters of Immortality, the Gift conveys the right to rule the four kingdoms to whichever king or queen it is given. The Magus of Sounis wants Gen to retrieve it from an underwater temple, since he has boasted that he "can steal anything." If Gen can't, it's back to prison or an even harsher fate.
Is it any good?
Cleverly constructed and unpredictable, this historical fantasy abounds with suspenseful set pieces, twisty double-crosses and a vivid set of main characters. The Thief starts slowly, but the measured pace allows for some delicious discussions between Gen and his captors. Author Megan Whalen Turn has created a highly detailed setting and peopled it with realistic and complicated characters. Eugenides the Thief is a delight from the beginning, and many readers will want to follow his continuing adventures in this book's sequels.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about the unreliable main character in The Thief . Why do readers like stories about tricksters?
Why do people continue to study Greek mythology? What lessons can it teach modern-day readers?
Gen and the magus eventually develop mutual respect for each other. What kinds of actions help develop trust between people?
- Author: Megan Whalen Turner
- Genre: Fantasy
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, History, Misfits and Underdogs
- Book type: Fiction
- Publisher: Greenwillow Books
- Publication date: October 31, 2017
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 10 - 14
- Number of pages: 279
- Available on: Paperback, Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, iBooks, Kindle
- Award: Newbery Medal and Honors
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