This book is FABULOUS! I think some reviewers consider this a YA book and perhaps it is, but it had me riveted even through a Christmas time bout with stomach flu. I couldn’t put it down unless I was forced to do so. The only good thing about being so sick was that when my eyes could focus I could read Hannah Tinti’s book and savor ever sentence. She’s a terrific writer and her characters truly do come alive on the page.
The story is a combination of Dickensian orphan-makes- his-way-in-the-world (think Oliver Twist and even Harry Potter) and an on the road adventure story. Ren is young orphan left at a monastery without a left hand and without any sense of his own history. He’s ‘rescued’ by a man claiming to be his older brother and they set off together for a new life. Unfortunately for Ren, it’s a life of street crime and an introduction to some of life’s even seedier sides. Tinit deftly creates hopelessly unique characters in this novel (there’s a midget that lives on a roof and enters the boarding house only through the chimney!) and it’s a page turner to the end.
This is a 5 Star book if ever there was one. I’d suggest it for readers old enough to read Harry Potter (the later installments with more adult issues) by his or herself and adults of every age and stage. The Good Thief is an instant classic. I can’t wait to read it again when my girls are older.