Welcome to the tyrannical city of Jewel, where impatience is a sin and boldness is a crime.
Goldie Roth has lived in Jewel all her life. Like every child in the city, she wears a silver guardchain and is forced to obey the dreaded Blessed Guardians. She has never done anything by herself and won’t be allowed out on the streets unchained until Separation Day.
When Separation Day is canceled, Goldie, who has always been both impatient and bold, runs away, risking not only her own life but also the lives of those she has left behind. In the chaos that follows, she is lured to the mysterious Museum of Dunt, where she meets the boy Toadspit and discovers terrible secrets. Only the cunning mind of a thief can understand the museum’s strange, shifting rooms. Fortunately, Goldie has a talent for thieving.
Which is just as well, because the leader of the Blessed Guardians has his own plans for the museum—plans that threaten the lives of everyone Goldie loves. And it will take a daring thief to stop him. . . .
Museum of Thieves is a thrilling tale of destiny and danger, and of a courageous girl who has never been allowed to grow up—until now.
Bless The Children…And Keep Them Safe!
There’s something intriguing about a book that is at heart a cautionary tale about caution. With parallels to the modern age (think of everything from little kids being walked on
leashes I mean backpacks to authoritarian regimes that rule by fear and intimidation), the citizens of Jewel have traded their freedom, and that of their children, to the Blessed Guardians in the name of safety.
But not every person, or every child, embraces this safety. For safety from every danger, even the myriad, minor ones, is oppression, however benign the face it wears. And Goldie, a girl who has been impatient and bold since she could voice her thoughts, chafes at the stifling natures of the adults around her.
At first it seems that she’ll be set free early, as The Grand Protector has reduced the age at which a child is Separated. But when something goes terribly wrong at the very moment Goldie’s chains are about to be cut, Goldie doesn’t have it in her to meekly return to her daily prison. Instead she chooses freedom, however scary that may be and embarks on an adventure that will see her striving to save the city of Jewel from it’s tragic mistakes.
Little Girl Lost and Little Boy Found
As Goldie leaves and finds herself at the Museum of Dunt, we meet the other crucial characters of this book: Toadspit, Sinew, Herro Dan and Olga Ciavolga. Like Goldie, Toadspit was a child not yet Separated from the Blessed Guardians but also like Goldie, he chose to run rather than stay in a city that was a prison in all but name. Also like Goldie, he found himself with the Keepers of the Museum of Dunt, a strange crew, outwardly silly or beneath notice but in reality the keepers of all the chaos and wildness that the citizens of Jewel had hidden away from themselves over the years. The Museum itself is the embodiment of that chaos and like a kettle over a flame, it can only be contained for so long.
Fall in Love with Me
From the beginning this story had me entranced. I can still remember being a child and despising all the rules that made no sense to me but I was told were “for my own good.” This is raised to a ridiculous degree but it resonated with me in a way I hadn’t expected. Perhaps because the characters are not just shells of children and adults but fully fleshed people (or brizzlehounds or slaughterbirds or even the Fugleman who I’m not fully convinced is human), filled with desires both petty and grand, foibles and talents and all the attributes that make them so very relatable.
Then there’s the world Ms. Tanner has created, so rich and detailed, I felt as if I had stepped into it and could walk the streets of Jewel and the maze-like halls of the Museum.
Or perhaps it was just the pacing of the book, just the right blend of descriptive passages and historical background and speeding, heart-tripping action and suspense that had me flying from one chapter to the next.
Whatever it was, I fell hard for this book. And I think you will too!
Get your own Audiobook at audible: Museum of Thieves (unabridged, 6hrs 51 min)
This was one of those books that was a true pleasure to listen to. The narrator, Claudia Black, was beyond phenominal. My personal favorite was her portrayal of Sinew pretending to be an idiot. PRICELESS! Do yourself a favor and listen to this delightful story!
Museum Of Thieves is the first book in The Keepers Trilogy and those of you who saw my IMM post on Sunday will know that I recently acquired the second book, City of Lies. SQUEE!!!!!!!!!! I’m DEFINITELY listing to that next! The third and final book, Path of Beasts, is due out this fall.
But if you’re like me and you’ll be jonesing from the second you finish City of Lies until you have Path of Beasts in your hot little paws, spend some time over at Ms. Tanner’s website! It’s amazing, has games to play, dozens of illustrations of the characters and lots of great advice for writers and readers. It’s a joy to roam around, much like the Museum of Dunt I imagine!