Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Good Thief by Hannah Tinti

I picked up The Good Thief intending to read a few pages before bed but was unable to put it down before I finished. A 12-year old orphan at a Catholic orphanage, Ren has spend his whole life trying to unravel the mystery of his missing hand and missing family. Considered unadoptable because of his deformity, Ren had nothing to look forward to but conscription into the Army when he got too old for St. Anthony's- nothing that is until the day Benjamin Nab showed up claiming to be Ren's long-lost brother. Unfortunately, Ren soon learns that Nab's story is just a story; he in fact excels at telling people just what they want to hear.

One on level, this book is an enjoyable adventure story populated with colorful characters and some light humor. Much more compelling are Ren's attempts to unravel the mystery of his past while developing a moral code that is much less flexible than that of his savior. Enough hints of the truth are peppered throughout the story to prevent the reader from crying foul at the denouement (no spoilers here though!) and the action is well paced if sometimes a little over the top.

Both the plot and the writing style are strong; the Good Thief is an enjoyable read I will certainly recommend to friends.

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