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Sunday, 11 October 2020

The Good Thieves | Book Review

 I was sent my copy of The Good Thieves as part of my participation of a read along with Tandem Collective. All views and opinions are honest and my own.

Fresh off the boat from England, Vita Marlowe has a job to do. Her beloved grandfather Jack has been cheated out of his home and possessions by a notorious conman with Mafia connections. Seeing Jack's spirit is broken, Vita is desperate to make him happy again, so she devises a plan to outwit his enemies and recover his home. She finds a young pickpocket, working the streets of New York City. And nearby, two boys with highly unusual skills and secrets of their own are about to be pulled into her lawless, death-defying plan.
I first discovered Katherine Rundell's writing when I taught The Explorer with my Year Four class and fell in loved with it. The writing was exquisite and I loved the characters she developed. So when the opportunity arose to participate in a read along for her fifth novel The Good Thieves, I couldn't turn it down. The story includes circus acts and a heist, which instantly piqued my interest. 

The character of Vita is fierce and headstrong, even if she makes some slightly questionable decisions every so often. Adding to the greatness of her character is that she is a polio survivor and has been left disabled, but she continues to prove that she is more than capable of incredible things. I think that is an amazing message to portray with children - they are all capable of great things!

Set in the glitzy and glamorous 1930s New York, I loved the setting of the circus. It was vividly described and you can easily see why Vita was so entranced. The friends she finds along the way are just as vivid: Silk, an orphan who has turned to picked pickpocketing to survive, Arkady, who is mesmerised by birds and animals, and Samuel, an aspiring gymnast. What a cast of characters! There really is someone for everyone to fall in love with.

Overall, The Good Thieves is a story of the power of friendship and how good really can overcome evil. It is funny, witty, fast paced and beautifully written. I honestly think that Katherine Rundell is one of the best middle grade authors at the moment, and I can't wait to see what she brings out next. My Rundell collection definitely needs to continue to grow! Honestly, this is an incredible adventure story that children could really get a lot from, and I sincerely hope I can share it with my classes in the future. I'm sure they'll love it. 5/5 stars, without a shadow of a doubt!

Let me know if you pick this, or any other Katherine Rundell titles up! I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Love Lexie

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