The Magic Thief (Magic Thief, #1)
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The Magic Thief (Magic Thief #1)

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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  10,215 ratings  ·  850 reviews
In a city that runs on a dwindling supply of magic, a young boy is drawn into a life of wizardry and adventure. Conn should have dropped dead the day he picked Nevery's pocket and touched the wizard's locus magicalicus, a stone used to focus magic and work spells. But for some reason he did not. Nevery finds that interesting, and he takes Conn as his apprentice on the prov...more
Hardcover, 422 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by HarperCollins (first published 2008)
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R.j.
Mar 23, 2008 R.j. rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone who loves fantasy
This book made me absurdly and enormously happy.

The Magic Thief has a number of familiar fantasy motifs and character types. But in Sarah Prineas's hands a story that could have been predictable instead has a wonderful freshness and vitality about it. The invented world in which Conn moves has a Dickensian flair without being merely alt-Victoriana, and its magical system is both well imagined and intriguing.

The characters in The Magic Thief are realistically flawed and fallible, yet they never...more
J.
Hmm. It's a fun, fluffy book for MG readers who enjoyed the Harry Potter and Percy Jackson books. The illustrations on the inside are reminiscent of Mary GrandPré's Potter artwork, yet it does get repetitive as the same pictures are shown over and over again instead of individual designs for each chapter.

The wizards in this universe must let a magical object choose them in order to access their powers, but instead of a wand it's a stone called the magilicus locus (which just so happens to work e...more
Kimberly
May 08, 2008 Kimberly rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Kimberly by: Jason Paulios
Shelves: fantasy
Conn just wanted some money to pay for his meal when he picked a wizard, Nevery's, pocket. Taking Nevery's locus magicalicus (a stone that helps wizards to focus when using magic) should have caused Conn to die. But he didn't. Nevery finds this interesting, and takes Conn in as his apprentice (more of a servant, though.)
Life is still difficult for Conn even though he gets fed, has a roof over his head, and he even learns how to read. There is contempt for him since he is a known thief and lock...more
A.J.
Okay, I guess I'm the first to give this book a review after its official publication date (June 3 or thereabouts).

To begin I think a bit of background is in order, because the 3-star rating I gave is deceptively low. The rating only reflects the book and its success stacked against myself as a reader with particular tastes and preferences. This book is definitely for the kiddies. It isn't designed to thrust itself among the greatest epic fantasy stories ever told, and in the darkness category...more
Kathryn
Mar 21, 2011 Kathryn rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those seeking good middle-grade fantasy
Conn is a young thief in the Twilight, managing to stay alive and well when so many others have fared far worse in the cold and threadbare conditions. But, when he tries to steal a wizard's locus magicalius stone (a source of connection with the source of magic) he ends up winning a new life for himself as an apprentice to the wizard Nevery. For Nevery sees what others never bothered to see in the lowly pick-pocket; a good-hearted boy with an uncanny aptitude for magic. But even in Nevery's home...more
Andy
Jan 13, 2011 Andy rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: 1-star
This book, the first in a trilogy, is a great example of how children’s book publishers are putting out way too many series and lots of bad fantasy in an attempt to make money. Connwaer has lots of street smarts and a skilled pick-pocketing hand. At the start of the story he steals the locus magicalicus of the Wizard Nevery Flinglas. This magical device should kill Conn, but doesn’t. And so, Conn is taken in with interest and some apprehension by the wizard Nevery. Magic abounds in their city of...more
Ann
Conn is a common thief, living on the streets of Twilight and stealing what he can to survive. Until he tries to steal something very important from a wizard. But what catches the wizard's interest isn't so much that Conn tried to steal his precious magical stone, but that the stone didn't kill Conn when he tried to.

Twilight is part of a city separated into three sections (basically the good side, the bad side, and the in between), and the city's magic fading - fast. Why? To what effect? And how...more
Abby
Plot Summary:
The city of Wellmet is losing its magic and no one can seem to figure out why. It is up to a previously exiled wizard named Nevery and a young thief named Connwaer, to save the town from its untimely demise. The story tells of Connwaer’s search for his locus magicalicus, or the stone that allows wizards to harness magic’s power and how he enters into apprenticeship with the older wizard. He also helps Nevery solve the mystery behind the lost magic.

Main Characters:
Connwaer: He is a...more
Lucy
Conn is a thief--a pickpocket, lockpick and gutterboy. Living in the Twilight, the seedy district of the magical city of Wellmet, there's not much else he could be. But when he picks the pocket of the wizard Nevery and comes out with Nevery's locus magicalicus, he's stolen more than he expected.

Nevery expects Conn to be dead--and fast--but when Conn doesn't die, Nevery decides to keep him around--just for a little while. Just until he figures out why not.

While Nevery may think that Conn is his s...more
Alice
One of my friends received this book as a gift from a friend years ago but no one ever read it. When my 9-year-old was sick this summer (and his siblings were out of town) I wanted to read aloud to him and decided to give this one a try. We were both delightfully surprised. The story is fun and compelling and the writing is decent (I was occasionally annoyed by the clunky style, but that may have been mostly because I was reading it aloud). It is a bit of a Harry Potter rip off, but that's OK......more
Karissa
I absolutely adored this middle grade fantasy by Prineas. I also loved Prineas's Winterling series which is why I originally picked this book up. This book was even better than the Winterling books, it was so magical and just so much fun to read.

I listened to The Magic Thief on Audiobook and it was very very well done. The narrator sounded exactly like I imagined Conn would sound. The narrator did all the other character voices really well too. I would highly recommend listening to this on audio...more
Maheen javed
Aug 30, 2009 Maheen javed is currently reading it
i love it! so far!
Charlyn  Trussell
The story is told in first person by Conn, the thief; through the journal of Mevery, the wizard; and in correspondence to and from him. Conn has forever been a thief, but when he steals a wizard's magic stone and nothing happens, the wizard takes an interest in the boy. Conn becomes Nevery's apprentice, an uneasy assignment for both the boy and his master. To be an apprentice and accepted by the council of wizards, Conn must first find his own magic stone, not an easy task. When Nevery is asked...more
Bette
I liked this book a lot. It's a bit derivative of JK Rowling's Harry Potter series. There is a wizard school, for instance, but the focus of the book on schooling isn't nearly as prominent as in Harry Potter. But overall, Prineas succeeds in creating a unique alternative fantasy world with an engaging protagonist. The main character, Conn, is a clever pickpocket and lock picker. He is "nosy," according to the wizard, Nevery, but it's his curiosity that leads him to solve the mystery of why the a...more
Ivonne Rovira
Jan 24, 2013 Ivonne Rovira rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: to lovers of fantasy, both children and adults
Recommended to Ivonne by: Bill Wolfe
Like L.M. Boston's Green Knowe series, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's The Little Prince, C.S. Lewis' Narnia Chronicles and J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter series, Sarah Prineas' The Magic Thief represents a children's book that's bound to be devoured by thousands of adults.

The eponymous thief Conn meets his future magical mentor, wizard Nevery Flinglass, while trying to pick his pocket. Nevery's locus magicalicus, a sort of magical stone that gives a wizard his power, should have killed Conn on the spot...more
Jojo
A great book written for all ages! It's about a thief named Conn and his life after meeting the wizard Nevery. The story is told in Conn's point of view and also in Nevery's short journal entries.

I really enjoyed how concise and deceptively simple the book is. Prineas wastes no space with needless fluff or too many adjectives. The characters are distinct and interesting. As the story progresses, you can tell that although Conn is a lowly thief, he has his own wisdom and set of skills (which is a...more
colleen the contrarian  ± (... never stop fighting) ±
2.5

A pretty decent story, if a little typical - orphan boy steals a wizard's locus magicalicus, which should kill him but doesn't. The wizard, intrigued, takes the boy in and the boy just happens to turn out to be a sort of chosen one figure.

The characters were ok, though, again, fairly typical, but my biggest issue was the way Conn, raised poor and uneducated, was naturally good at everything. He learns to read in about a day, and can memorize complicated spells after hearing them twice.

As for...more
Hallie
Feb 08, 2010 Hallie rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommended to Hallie by: Dorian
Shelves: fantasy, childrens
This one just felt right from the beginning and continued to hit me the right way throughout. It's a bit younger than I normally read, but the fact that I never felt the least bit less enjoyment from it says a lot.

It's extraordinary because if you set up the plot it sounds very, very old. Young boy, underdog of the first order (orphan, "gutterboy", pick-pocket), taken up, reluctantly, by an older wizard - a grumpy and often distracted one who ultimately comes to care for the boy. (I almost could...more
Shaun
Definitely a positive 3 star rating, meaning it was well written, the story was engaging for its intended audience, and I enjoyed it.

So why only 3 stars?

While better than average, neither the characters nor the story blew me away. But that's okay and not just because this is written for the 9-12 age group.

This first book in the trilogy is a solid tale that's sure to entertain, yet not particularly memorable when stacked up against series like Harry Potter. And although I know the first-person n...more
Ann Rees
As I was perusing the shelves in my local library, I came upon this book, looking deceptively innocent with its nice blue and gold cover. Since I like fantasy, I decided I'd give it a go. Little did I know what horrors awaited me. The plot, (if you can call it that), centers around a young thief oh so appropriately named Conn, who attempts to steal a locus magilawhatsit from the wizard Nevery, which should have killed him. Unfortunately, this doesn't happen. Instead, Nevery decides to take Conn...more
Chris
With a recommendation from Diana Wynne Jones ('I couldn't put it down. Wonderful, exciting stuff') The Magic Thief (the first in a series with the same name and consequently re-titled Stolen) challenges the reader to dare contradict such a distinguished fantasy writer. Bravely, I'm going to try.

Yes, I too couldn't put it down. Well, actually I did, but only to catch up on some sleep, but at nearly 400 pages that's to be expected. The action pulled you along, aided by the almost breathless short...more
Lindsay Waddell
I know JK Rowling doesn't have the monopoly on all books about boy wizards (or does she?). But, I feel we've been spoiled by Harry Potter. And any book with similar themes seems to pale in comparison. It isn't really fair, but any children's author that dares to write a book about magic will probably be compared to Mrs. Rowling. I think that this might have gotten one more star from me if she had changed up the whole 'boy doesn't know he is a wizard/chosen-one/prodigy/resisted death because he i...more
SilverRaindrops
Once in a while, I need a straight-forward fun book, that is interesting enough to keep you reading until the end, has engaging characters, and does not require too much of you. If it still manages to surprise you, than it sure is time well spent.

"The Magic Thief" (or "Stolen") fits that description well enough. Conn is an unusual, truth-telling thief, and Nevery a grumpy wizard with a warm heart. The supporting cast seem nice enough as well.

There's a slight problem with the structure of the b...more
Debrarian
(booktalk)

Connwaer is a gutterboy, a lockpick and a thief. He lives in the city of Wellmet, in the dangerous part of town known as the Twilight, where he survives on his wits -- and not much else. In short, Conn is a pickpocket -- until the day he picks the wrong pocket. When the old man in the dark cloak disappears around the corner, Conn takes a look at what he lifted from the man's pocket: a strange, black stone. Uh-oh. This is no ordinary stone, and Conn knows it. The stone he's holding can...more
Bonnie Gayle
Jan 31, 2009 Bonnie Gayle rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone
Conn is a young lock picker and pickpocket who one night picks the pocket of the wizard Nevery. What Conn steals, though, is Nevery's locus magicalicus, a stone that, without which, a wizard cannot do a spell. Nevery is shocked to see that the stone does not kill Conn, because it should, instantly, and he is curious enough to invite Conn back to his house.

Conn shows more magical ability, so Nevery says he will take him as an apprentice, but before that can happen, he has only 30 days to find his...more
Dawn
This is a great little fantasy book. Thanks to Wendy and Rose for recommending it. My son loved it, and it was also a good read-aloud for me and my husband. The elements and plot aren't unique--orphan boy takes up with Gandalf-type wizard, finds that he has magical talent and saves the city. But the way Prineas puts it all together is refreshing and quite good. Well drawn, appealing characters. Benet is delightful. I found Con's self-confidence unusual, but effective. I really like Prineas' voic...more
Vickie
I can't get over how good this book was to listen to. It's gauged towards 9-12 year olds, so I must really be in touch with my inner child. Sarah Prineas also must be (is) an excellent writer. I was cheering for Conn, the main character who is not sure how old he is since he was basically raised in the Twilight (read slums), didn't have much schooling or much need of it. He does know how to move fast, pick pockets and pick locks 'quick as quick'. He picks the pocket of Nevery, a wizard, and take...more
Shippseattle
So Much fun to read. Turns out this will be a trilogy. Looking forward to readding the next two

In a city that runs on a dwindling supply of magic, a young boy is drawn into a life of wizardry and adventure. Conn should have dropped dead the ...more

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In a city that runs on a dwindling supply of magic, a young boy is drawn into a life of wizardry and adventure. Conn should have dropped dead the day he picked Nevery's pocket and touched the wizard's locus magicalicus, a stone used to focus m...more
Keyreads
This was such a magical & fun book for kids. I should really read more middle grade it brings back so many good memories.

I loved the illustrations at the bedginning of each chapter. They added so much more to the story. I think my favorite part of this book was the recipes at the end. Very unexpected and I now need to make some bisquets.
If only we all could be wizards and witches. *happiness*
Chagall
Bello! Un buon romanzo middle grade per passare un paio di sere spensierate.
La trama: Conn, un ladruncolo di strada, diventa l’apprendista di un nobile mago. I due iniziano a indagare sul calo di magia della fittizia città di Wellmet, una sorta di Londra Vittoriana fatata.
C’è un particolare nella costruzione della storia che non mi torna. Conn viene scelto come allievo dal suo maestro, ma solo in seguito dimostra effettive doti magiche. Mi sembra una bella coincidenza.
A parte questa ingenuità, i...more
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827236
I live in rural Johnson County, Iowa, and my first novel, The Magic Thief, was published by HarperCollins in June 2008 and by a bunch of other publishers around the world. The next book in the series, The Magic Thief: Lost, came out in May 2009, and the third, The Magic Thief: Found, was published in spring 2010. My next book from HarperCollins was Winterling (2012), followed by two sequels, Summe...more
More about Sarah Prineas...
Lost (Magic Thief, #2) Found (Magic Thief, #3) Winterling (Winterling, #1) Summerkin (Winterling, #2) Moonkind (Winterling, #3)

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