Book Review

The Good Thieves By Katherine Rundell | Book Review

Hey Guys! It is Max here and we will be composing a review for a novel called ‘The Good Thieves’ By Katherine Rundell today. I don’t know if you remember this but I read a book christened ‘The Wolf Wilder’ By Katherine Rundell in the month of March and I elucidated on the likes and dislikes that I had for that novel in this March Reading Wrap Up post and it ultimately boiled down to a mediocre rating. However, despite my distaste for that novel, I requested this novel from Pansing to give the author another chance and thank goodness I did because I enjoyed it so much more than her other work. 

Before we plummet right into the review section, I would like to thank Pansing for sending this novel to me. 

So, without further ado, let us dive right in!

Disclaimer:

  • All thoughts and opinions are solely on my own and,
  • The review for this book is spoiler-proof. So, feel free to stay until the very end of this article!

20190817_115919.jpg

Synopsis:

When the letters first arrived from her beloved grandfather—the shaking, green-inked letters, full of bewildered anger at the loss of his ancestral home and the priceless jewels within it—Vita and her mother took the next boat to New York. And now that she’s here, Vita has only one goal: To break into Hudson Hall and steal back what the sinister Basil Sowotore took from her family.

But to do so, she needs a plan, a weapon, and faith in the pickpockets, trapeze-artists, and animal-tamers she has met along the way. With her troupe behind her, Vita attempts the most daring heist the city has ever seen. But will she succeed?

My introspection:

“The night city was swept by a premature winter. An ice snap froze the water in the pipes. Sleet washed down the city, swept the detritus of the mud and the old newspaper and the furious cats out from the murky alleyways into the main roads.”

First of all, I thought the writing style for both ‘The Wolf Wilder’ and ‘The Good Thieves’ were beautifully crafted. It seemed effortless for the author to string sentences together as the whole novel is filled with seamless prose and if you are looking for an example, try reading the quote that I had placed above of this sentence. I have loved the style of her writing and the technique she used to string sentences and words together ever since I read ‘The Wolf Wilder’. The author does not concoct extra information just to prolong the novel or string more sentences together to hit a goal or something, she gives the information so impeccably that everything seems necessary. In addition, I thought the descriptions that she had given in the novel were perfectly measured as it felt so real in my brain that I could touch it, virtually. Speaking of descriptions and feeling it virtually, this brings us to the next point: The Atmosphere.

The atmosphere of this novel is a mixture of comedic relief, hatred and anger. It is facetious because of the constant banter between the characters and the arguments seem to never end which I, at times, found myself laughing at the exchange of words between them. Hatred and anger come into play due to certain characters doing nasty businesses and I thought the author did a good job at extracting our emotions out from our body and let it diffuse into the atmosphere. Thus, I admired the crafting of the atmosphere made by the author.

The pacing of the novel is uprightly one of the most astounding items that is being placed in the book as it moves in a rapid manner and this is due to how addictive the plot is in which I will talk more about later on. The plot has an addictive quality to it and this gives the book an advantage as readers will carry on with the novel without ceasing as they would like to find out more about what is going to happen to the characters. To compare it with ‘The Wolf Wilder’, I thought ‘The Good Thieves’ was traversed better than it because I can sense vacillation at certain localities in ‘The Wolf Wilder’ that took me out of the context of the story and the ending for it was hastened like it was elbowing me laboriously out of the house or in this case, the book. Therefore, ‘The Good Thieves’ granted me a better impression than ‘The Wolf Wilder’ will ever remit.

In order to properly review the characters, I am going to split the protagonist and the side characters into sections to enunciate my feelings on each one of them. Please take note that I will not analyse the antagonists of the novel as I do not want to pillage the plot of the book to you. Thus, we shall begin:-

1) Vita: I do not actually know how to review our protagonist without sounding like a broken record. Well, here goes nothing. She is smart and skilled in throwing weaponry with perfect precision. I enjoyed reading about her scheme to take her grandfather’s castle back from the antagonist and her marvellous plots and plans.  

2) Arkady & Samuel: Their characters are not well-developed but I enjoyed the constant banter that Arkady gives to his other teammates and friends. Both Arkady & Samuel have a beautiful friendship and both of them aspire to be something else and they chase after their dream and that is a very heart-warming thing to read about. 

3) Silk: I enjoyed the glimpse-through backstory that the author has bestowed upon her but her character is, again, not well-developed and therefore, I cannot really comment on her characterisation. If I were to rectify a part of this book, I will definitely give a thorough background story for Arkady, Samuel and Silk characterisation because I thought it was extremely important to give backbones to your characters. 

However, there were plot holes and specific precincts in the novel that I found highly unbelievable. For example, on page 17, chapter 3, I do not know how Vita manages to find the antagonist of the novel because New York is freaking huge, how can she just randomly find him through a ‘car ride?’ and trust me there are more unbelievable instances such as the ending. [Spoiler] How can all of them make it out in one piece, unscratched? 

Lastly, topics like racism are touched on in this novel but not really explored which disappointed me because this could be the very first children novel that includes important topics such as racism in but it will, unfortunately, be marked as a missed opportunity as the outcome of the novel did not explore it much.

In conclusion, I am proffering this novel 75% (A-) as I enjoyed it immensely although it has certain flaws and thus, the rating.

⇛ This book is currently available at all good bookstores. Do give it a try!


This is the end of my spoiler-free review for The Good Thieves By Katherine Rundell! I hope you all enjoyed it and follow me with your email/Wordpress account to get notifications when I post a new article! Bye!

Advertisements
Bookish Fun!

An Overdue Reading Wrap-Up | 2019

Hey Guys! It is Max here and we will be manufacturing my Very much Overdue Reading Wrap-Up today. The reason why it is overdue is that I have not been composing a reading wrap-up for 4 months and that sets out to be notably defective as I would not be able to show you the books that I had read but not reviewed on this blog. Therefore, we will be rectifying that process today! 

From the month of April to July, I had read a total of 12 novels and I am going to list the statistics of the total number of pages and the average rating for all 12 books below:

  • Average Rating: 3.75 Scintillating Stars
  • Page Count: 3313 

Without further ado, let us dive right into the wrap-up!

*

1. Murder On The Orient Express By Agatha Christie

20190817_115604.jpg

Page Count: 274

Genre: Murder Mystery

I presume what plundered this novel for me is the film adaptation of this novel that was released in 2017 which I mildly enjoyed due to the easy-to-spot plot twist that was settled in the movie. So, I read the book after I watched the film and it was an unpropitious idea due to the fact that I did not enjoy this novel because I can already see the plot twist coming and the characters lacked depth except for the murderers. Therefore, the final rating that I had given this novel is an E (35%).

2. Curse Of The Dead-Eyed Doll By Thomas Kingsley Troupe

cover161893-medium-1

Page Count: 136

Genre: Horror

I had composed a whole separate review for this novel and to give you perspicacity into the review, I shall extract a quote from the review and place it here:

“In this 136 pages novel, the pacing was adroitly composed. In the first chapter, we learn about a school trip to a museum that holds a doll that has a spirit imbued into it. Our main character named Alejandro Padilla travels with the school to the museum to visit this enigmatic doll. He snubs the rules and regulations surrounding the doll and snaps a picture of it, supplementing with insults to fuel the spirit’s seething disturbances. Therein, eerie instances start to occur. The story itself made me flip page after page until I reach the end because of how compelling the writing style was. OH! I almost forgot, there are gorgeous illustrations which expedite the pacing of the novel and keep readers invested in the story.” 

You can read the review here if you are interested. My final verdict for this novel is C (60%).

3. Again, But Better By Christine Riccio

41147279

Page Count: 373

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Again, I had already composed a whole separate review for this novel so if you are interested to read that review, you can click here. I am going to extract a quote from the review and paste it here to give you a simple insight into the review:

“The romance was much more substantial in the second fragment of the story than the first. The first fragment of the story for the romance department was a little bovine because it was an insta-love that bloomed faster than an egg could ever boil. The inner monologues that the protagonist had were tolerably cringe-worthy and if you are looking for an example, take a look at the quote above of this paragraph. However, the second fragment of the story took a different route for the characters as their decisions do not confuse the readers and they were able to be more conscious of their surroundings and resolutions to tasks at hand. Thus, the second fragment was ten times better than the first act.”

Final Verdict: C (65%)

4. We Are Lost And Found By Helene Dunbar

cover162857-medium

Page Count: 304

Genre: Young Adult, LGBT

I had, again, composed a whole separate review for this novel (you guys are probably tired of hearing this haha, sorry) so if you are interested to read the review, click here. I am, again, going to extricate a quote from the review and patch it here.

“This novel follows Michael, a closeted-gay whose father had recently banned his brother from coming home as he had come out to his parents for being gay. His plan was to lay low and not make irrational decisions in fear of being kicked out of the house like his brother by his father. His father, who was verbally abusive, tormented him with abhorrent terms day and night and the only way he could forget all of these for a little while was attending a club christened ‘The Echo’ where he danced it all out and dissipated himself in the flow. As the story progresses, the imminent threat of AIDs became more apparent and everybody in the gay community was afraid that they might catch the disease if they were to have sexual intercourse. This affected our main character on several levels as he was afraid for his best friend, James and his brother’s lives.” 

Final Verdict: (A-) 75%

5. Ms Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal By G. Willow Wilson 

Ms. Marvel, Vol. 1: No Normal

Page Count: 120

Genre: Graphic Novel

Finally, a graphic novel that I enjoyed immensely! I loved everything from the art style to the structure of the story. However, I do not really understand where her power originated from and it took me out of the context of the story multiple times which irritated me to no end. Other than that, I do not have a problem with this graphic novel. Thus, my final verdict for this novel is B (70%).

6. Sharp Objects By Gillian Flynn

20190817_115730.jpg

Page Count: 251

Genre: Thriller

I have something preposterous to confess here… I enjoyed the TV series more than the book. So, hear me out before you carry your pitchforks and proof; receipts and reasons (Get the reference? Okay, I will stop). I preferred it more than the book because they have a class of terrific casts for the show and I was so much more immersed in their lives than I was in the novel. Moreover, that ending for the show with its end credit scene was horrifying and I did not see it coming. However, in the novel, you can see this estrange family dismantling and in turn, you can kind of guess who is the killer by the end of it. In addition, the characters in the show had much more depth than the book. However, I still very much enjoyed this novel so my final verdict for it is A (80%).

7. The Handmaid’s Tale By Margaret Atwood

The Handmaid's Tale

Page Count: 344

Genre: Classic, Dystopian

This is getting out of hand but I have to, once again, declare something outrageous: I enjoyed the TV show more than the novel. There, I said it. The show has stunning cinematography with a collection of supremely casted actresses and actors. The structure of the story in both the novel and the show is devastating and horrifying as the men in the society called Gilead view women as a sexual tool to give birth to babies. It infuriated me when I was reading this because of how unjust this system was and how there was no gender equality in any given way. However, I thought the novel was a little slow and therefore, it did not achieve the highest rating from me. Thus, my final verdict for the novel is an A (87%).

8. The Fifth Wave By Rick Yancey

The 5th Wave (The 5th Wave, #1)

Page Count: 460

Genre: Science Fiction

Let me give all of you a piece of advice before you pursuit for this novel: DO NOT watch the film adaptation of the novel before you read this book. It will definitely defile the fun if you watch it before you read it. Actually, don’t even watch the film adaptation of the novel, it is dreadful. I urge you to read the novel though because it has all the elements that I love: atmospheric, character development, fast-paced, amazing writing, discernible voices from varied characters’ point of view, phenomenal plot twists and finally, an astounding story structure and backbone. However, the only thing that irked me was the unnecessary romantic relationship between Cassie and Evan. I thought their love for each other was cringe-worthy and a little bit forced. Thus, my final verdict for the novel is A (88%).

9. Animal Farm By George Orwell

20190817_115509.jpg

Page Count: 141

Genre: Classic, Dystopian

This is one of my favourite books of the year and I am not saying that lightly because I loved every second of this novel and every sentence presented in the novel is absolute gold, the 24-carat kind. I loved the underlined message of this book and how messed up everything was in it. It definitely is a thought-provoking novel as it got me thinking about our society today long after I had finished the book. Therefore, my final verdict for this novel is a scintillating A+ (100%).

10. Nevertell By Katherine Orton

20190727_112948.jpg

Page Count: 375

Genre: Middle-Grade, Fantasy

Once again, I had already reviewed this novel on this site and if you are interested to read it, click here. I am, again, going to extort a quote from the review and reinforce it here.

“When I first freed this novel and overset to the first folio, the very first sentence of the novel had already captivated me to read on as the writing style was so beautifully crafted and the prose used was on point. It was spontaneously explicit to me that the string of sentences was crafted punctiliously as the sentences were woven and strung together as seamless as silk. Although this novel is a middle-grade novel, Ms Orton did not fail to impress me with the omnium gatherum of words used and I very much appreciated that. Side note: there are illustrations emboss on every chapter headers and they are as beautiful as the writing style of this novel.”

Final Verdict: 80% (A).

11. The Outsiders By S.T Hinton

20190817_115535.jpg

Page Count: 375

Genre: Young Adult, Classic

I did not like any of the characters except for Darry (the only righteous one) as they were bullies being tyrannised by the social classes and bullies browbeating the juniors. I struggled to understand their motivation and their actions because the writing style was all over the place and I could not discern what in the living world the author was trying to convey. There were certain ideas that were brought up but never really established its foot on the groundworks of the novel which I thought was a waste of ideas. Also, most of the characters in this book are cupboard cut-out (2D characters) which irked me endlessly. However, I enjoyed the emotional factor of the novel and the ending as it was pretty devastating to read about. Therefore, my final verdict for this novel is D (58%).

12. Vox By Christina Dalcher

Vox

Page Count: 336

Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian

This novel felt a lot like The Handmaid’s Tale as the parallels between two books are very prominently displayed. For example, women losing jobs and rights. However, as I proceeded to read on, it became less like The Handmaid’s Tale and more like its own novel and I absolutely ‘adored’ it and thought the novel was as frightening as The Handmaid’s Tale. However, I thought this novel was slightly better than The Handmaid’s Tale as it was paced faster and it was unputdownable. Thus, my final verdict for this novel is A+ (90%).


This is the end of my ‘An Overdue Reading Wrap-Up!’  I hope you all enjoyed it and let me know what your reading wrap up was in the comment box below! Follow me with your email/WordPress account to get notifications when I post a new article! Have a great day ahead!