I am a master of foolhardy plans. I have so much practice I consider them professional risks.The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
The king’s scholar, the magus, believes he knows the site of an ancient treasure. To attain it for his king, he needs a skillful thief, and he selects Gen from the king’s prison. The magus is interested only in the thief’s abilities. What Gen is interested in is anyone’s guess. Their journey toward the treasure is both dangerous and difficult, lightened only imperceptibly by the tales they tell of the old gods and goddesses.
I went into this one a little blind. I heard about it in Peruse Project‘s channel and decided to give it a try since anything involving thieves for me is a win.
So basically in this one we follow Gen who was pretty much rotting away in prison for stealing from the King of Sounis, until the day when the King’s scholar, the Magus took him on a journey in search of an invaluable treasure known as Hemiathe’s Gift. The stone had been dipped in the Waters of Immortality, and the Gift conveys the right to rule the four kingdoms to whichever king or queen it is given. So now Gen has to steal this treasure from an underwater temple.
So I have to admit that the first half of this book was a little bit hard for me. Maybe it’s because I’m still recovering from a really annoying reading slump but the story was going a bit slow for me. But I decided to push through it and I am so glad I did.
While the first half of the book felt a bit slow for me I still pushed myself to pay attention because Whalen really managed to provide the descriptions for this great world she built. And what helped a lot for me was the characters, even more the main character Gen, specially considering the fact that he is the one narrating the whole thing and I really thought that was well written.
Gen is initially portrayed as this arrogant and selfish thief but as the story progressed I found myself really enjoying how quick-witted and sarcastic he is. He is also really clever which would be shown in unexpected ways and sometimes I would kind of forget about it for a bit only to be reminded in a really fun and gripping way. I honestly truly love him! Then there is the Magus who really pissed me off in the beginning but also grew a lot along the story. Sophos is honestly just too sweet for this world and deserves the best. Pol…I didn’t really form a strong opinion about him. He seemed fine for the majority of the story but I don’t know…he didn’t really do too much for me to love or hate him. Ambiades though, he sucks. Really couldn’t stand him.
What really held my interest was the myths about the old gods! It surprised me to know that the gods and goddesses in her book are not those of the Greek or any other Pantheon, that she created them all. I felt like Megan did a fantastic job of making them truly unique while also giving them the well-known flavor of mythology. As you all may know by now I absolutely love mythology so that was a refreshing element for me.
The second half of the book was a lot more exciting for me and I was really hooked when they arrived at the underwater temple where Gen would have to go in to steal the so called treasure. It was great to see him in action and proving how great of a thief he really is.
From there the story takes a few twists, some that I could kind of see coming and another, towards the end of the book that really made me give me the 4-stars rating for this book. It really fits and makes things fall into place nicely, and in my opinion added so much more depth to the story and to some of the characters as well.
What I also enjoyed were the political twists that this book took. It may not have been many but to see the plans being put together and the reason why some characters do some of the things they do and then having those plans twisted in ways they didn’t even imagined was really enthralling for me.
Overall, I really enjoyed this read. I have heard now that many people absolutely love the second book and that many have began reading this series because of it so I am rightfully curious about where this story goes from here.