The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
Gen claims to be the greatest thief ever, because he can steal anything. Then Gen messes up a job and gets thrown into the king’s prison to rot. There he stays until the King’s advisor Magus comes to him with a proposition. He wants Gen to steal an object for him in return for his freedom. This object, magically powerful is located in the land of Attolia. What more can Gen do than accept the job?
They travel deep into the kingdom of Attolia to an ancient temple that holds the powerful amulet they are looking for, but those who have entered before have never returned back out. Will Gen suffer the fate of those before him or somehow beat the odds and win the gods favor?
This book was so-so for me. Magus and his apprentices go on a long journey with Gen to find the object he is supposed to steal, and the journey got kind of boring for me, though I always enjoyed the characters. The main character is fun, solid, witty, and has a nice voice. I also really liked the world building, and the myths that the author made up about the world. It is very much a reflection of Greek history and culture, but the author made the setting and stories her own. I really enjoyed her creation myths. They are different from the Greek Myths, but have the same charm. I was really impressed, because they were very intriguing and fun to read. The ending also has a cool surprise twist that I wasn’t expecting at all. I had to go back and look in the book for clues, which was fun. A lot of the action is told in flashback after the fact, which makes it kind of flat. I guess my biggest problem with this book was that I wanted a bit more excitement out of it. I would still recommend it, and I plan on reading the next book because the set up for a sequel was interesting. Plus, I liked the characters, and wonder what happens to the little Prince Sophos.
Author's Site: http://home.att.net/~mwturner/