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The Spirit Thief (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #1)
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The Spirit Thief (The Legend of Eli Monpress #1)

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3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  4,019 ratings  ·  360 reviews
Eli Monpress is talented. He's charming. And he's a thief.

But not just any thief. He's the greatest thief of the age - and he's also a wizard. And with the help of his partners - a swordsman with the most powerful magic sword in the world but no magical ability of his own, and a demonseed who can step through shadows and punch through walls - he's going to put his plan int
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Kindle Edition, 368 pages
Published October 1st 2010 by Orbit (first published 2010)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Felicia
So I'm giving this four stars because I have read all three books in the series and so I'm rating the series overall as such this far. The second and third books are actually better than this first one. A REALLY REALLY fun series that fantasy fans will enjoy if they like their entertainment fluffy and light, and the books get better and better, so I would definitely encourage you to check it out!

This is a familiar fantasy-renaissance world, but where everything has a "spirit", water and air and
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Monica
This series definitely has a strong start. It is a rapid paced, easy, and really fun read. The world building and magic system are both intriguing, and though there are many common tropes present in the story, it is told with a flair that makes it a distinctive read. I would definitely recommend this series to fans of the fantasy genre.
Denae
Wow. So, I haven't had that much fun with a new book since Witches Inc., last year.
Characters. Not well-developed yet, but I can see how there's plenty of room for me to learn more about them in books to come. They are consistent, and the reader learns about them, just doesn't learn much. It's not a big enough book, though.
Beings. A good plethora, from spirits, Great Spirits, humans, wizards, ghosthounds, and demons (and whatever the Shepherdess is). I hope there will be a few more like the ghos
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Stephanie
Recent speculative fiction has trended towards the dirge-like in nature, delighting in delving deep into the execrable nature of humanity, taking pains to wallow melodramatically in all manner of ethical turgidity, and throwing all manner of dark and disturbing fare in the direction of the hapless reader. Freaks and abominations abound, and our moral shortcomings are painfully (and verbosely) highlighted through plots that take us through a veritable narrative morass of foulness. With speculativ ...more
Wendy Darling
Cool magic and unbelievably funny narrative voice. I loved Rachel Aaron's Paradox scifi series (written as Rachel Bach), but after reading this, it's official: I'll read anything she writes! Eli Monpress is a charmer for sure.

Review to come.
AnonymousBookCritics
Dec 31, 2012 AnonymousBookCritics rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of anime, cocky male leads
2.5 stars
Originally reviewed: 7/1/2012

Unfortunately, for how excited I was about that opening line, how enjoyable it was to see Eli talk to a door and how quirky and fun the whole scene felt, that was as far as it went. It felt to me that all of the effort of catching the reader’s eye was put into that first chapter and the rest sort of paled in comparison. We never really get to know any of the characters. We’re given the impression there’s a story behind Miranda and her ghosthound, Gin. But th
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Soo
There is a spirit in everything in the world and only a handful of people have the ability to communicate with them. It's the strength of the person's spirit that defines the power they have and their control that maintains how much they can do with it. In this world, there is a man who desires to be the best thief of all time and he does most of his work with carefree chitchat with the spirits that live in everything. Eli Monpress won't let a small thing like plans falling apart to keep him fro ...more
Mark
This debut novel, the first of three books to be published in a matter of months, is a sparky introduction to what promises to be an entertaining series. Though it is nothing particularly new, it is engaging and fun, and will bring a smile to many a reader.

What is the winner for me here is the tale’s engaging tone. It’s light, fun and not particularly deep nor dark. It plays with the genre in a style that was reminiscent to me of early David Eddings. For many, that’ll be recommendation enough.

To
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Shannon (Giraffe Days)
Eli Monpress has a plan. It's an exciting, ambitious plan that will see yet another kingdom commit money to the already-hefty bounty on his head, making him not just a great thief, but the Greatest. He has plenty of reasons to expect success, too. Eli is a magician, and a charming one at that: rather than make a contract of service between himself and the spirits that are found in all things as the other wizards do, he charms and flatters them until they're falling over themselves to help him. H ...more
Jacob Proffitt
Ugh. It's one thing to write for a younger audience. It's another to write for people you clearly think are idiots. I couldn't find a single character with anything resembling realistic motivations or reactions. The heroes feel like they were written by an 8 year-old asking "wouldn't it be cool if". Everyone else feels like they were written by an 8 year-old asking "who wouldn't want that?" In other words, the world is populated by meanie-heads and egotists with a supporting cast of henchmen and ...more
Karissa
I have had this book to read for quite sometime. This was a fun and light fantasy adventure read but left me feeling like something was missing. There are five books total in this series.

I listened to this on audiobook. It was narrated by Luke Daniels, who also narrates The Iron Druid Chronicles. He does a great job narrating these light-hearted books. But honestly it was a bit distracting because I kept thinking about the characters from the Iron Druid Chronicles, the voices he uses for charact
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Melissa
The cover is perfect for the thief. I think that sly smile describes Eli well. And although he is the main character of the story, I found myself more interested in those around him. Especially the wizard Miranda and her ghosthound, Gin. I also found the relationship between Miranda and Eli interesting. They were like polar opposites in terms of morality. Eli was much more in tune with how nature might view human morality and responsibility and Miranda was his "opposite" in her almost evangelica ...more
Jason
I have to admit this one was quite a disappointment. As a huge fan of Lynch's Gentlemen Bastards series, I was looking forward to another Renaissance-analog fantasy with a lovable and capable thief as a main character. Alas, The Spirit Thief fell short on many accounts.

All of the characters seemed very flat. Their motivations were weak at best, and at worst, completely non-existent. I never had any idea why anyone was doing anything. The world itself seemed to have no back-story, either. Sure, I
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Sharon
I honestly wasn't expecting it to be all that good, especially after the first couple pages and I got an idea of what POV characters were going to be dragging me around all day.

That said, the first pages also intrigued me--sweet-talking a door. Really interesting concept, which quickly developed into an awesome and mostly original magic system of spirits and different ways of manipulating them. :) This was probably the greatest reason of why I liked this book, because it was flat-out fresh and
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Mogsy (MMOGC)
Rachel Aaron's The Legend of Eli Monpress is a series that has repeatedly popped up on my recommendations lists in the past; I swear every few weeks I'll be browsing through suggestions on my online book stores or Goodreads pages as usual and this blue cover will show up, with the man's face on it flashing his sly little smile at me. It's like he's saying, "READ ME! Come on, you know you wanna!"

Obviously, my curiosity gotten the better of me, or more accurately, World Without End's Women of Genr
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Brenda
Why I read it: kept seeing it reviewed all over
The Plot: At first glance this sounds like a lot of other books I've read. A thief who is so good that he can do anything and get out of any scrape? It sounded a bit like The Thief (The Queen's Thief, Book 1) or The Lies of Locke Lamora. I mean, in The Thief, we start out in pretty much exactly the same place--with our hero locked up figuring out how to escape. But there's an interesting magic system here that makes it different. Every single thing
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cecilia
the thing that drew my attention to The Spirit Thief was the tagline: What he gets away with is criminal. Nothing like a clever tagline to get my curiosity going! :) And then, I was definitely hooked by the back cover summary. A thief who stole a king? Ridiculous yet genius.

It has been so long (okay, since Blameless and Bewitched & Betrayed) since I've found a new fantasy series - and it has been never since I found one that releases the first 3 in the series in monthly succession! Not sure
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Stefan
In the opening scene of The Spirit Thief, Rachel Aaron’s charming debut novel, the notorious thief Eli Monpress is trying to escape from the royal dungeon of Mellinor. Since he’s not just a thief but also a wizard, he does this by quite literally trying to charm the dungeon’s door into opening: not by casting a spell on it, but rather by persuading, cajoling and wheedling it into letting him through, explaining that it really would be much better off without those annoying nails keeping it toget ...more
Dan
Awesome! 5 books in this series, and if book one is any indication it's going to be great!

Full review when I've finished the series.

*******

Now THAT was a fun story!

My motivation for reading is simple. I read books to be entertained, and when I've finished reading them I want to feel happy. That's it. Really.

Reading the five books of Eli Monpress satisfied both requirements more simply than any other books I've read. Some books try to be so enlightening they ruin the entertaining part. Others ar
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Kate
An EXCELLENT fantasy debut. I tore through this book in two nights, even while sick, and really couldn't put the book down once I'd gotten halfway.

The plot is, frankly, pretty formulaic - I found myself musing at several points that the author had clearly watched a lot of Trigun and had a thing for "mysterious gunslinger/swordsman face-offs," in addition to including plenty of standard fantasy elements like the Band of Misfits Causing Mischief and the various escalating Boss Fights - and certain
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Mihir
This book was a complete surprise and a complete winner for me. Rachel Aaron has written a very engaging story which can be best described as "Terry Brooks Meets Scott Lynch".

The story line begins with a thief who's always looking for ways to increase the bounty on his head. Eli Monpress and his gang are the main protagonists, with almost everyone behind them for various reasons. This book is a refreshing change from the Gritty wave that fantasy seems to riding right now and is a nice throwba
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Susan
4.5 stars. Eli, The (Spirit Thief)Wizard, Joseph possessor of the Heart of War's Magic Sword, Miranda the Mystic Spiritualist and her Ghost Dog, Niko a Demon Seed who has not become a demon yet, The White Lady and many other creative characters make up this enchanting mystical story.

Eli is a wizard who can borrow the spirit of any thing on earth except people. He is quite charming and has the essence of a bright light that makes him irresistible to all things, you could even say they are enamor
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Megan
When Ghosthound Gin was introduced, I instantly changed his name to Ghostdog Gin and imagined him helping little girls battle the monsters under their beds, then curling up, all cute, on their beds to sleep at night. This book is not like that at all, but it is very fun. You should read it if you like magic, thieves, swords that talk, etc.
colleen the contrarian  ± (... never stop fighting) ±
Based on the blurb I was expecting more of a caper sort of tale with magic. I was also expecting more focus on Eli. In both instances I was wrong.

This pretty much reads like a bog standard fantasy adventure tale, complete with a lineup of high level D&D characters, none of whom ever escape beyond their tropes and/or get developed in any kind of way. Whenever things look dire they pull out their special abilities and/or items and roll a critical strike. (There's even at least one requisite de
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Mei-Lu
Rachel Aaron's Eli Monpress series is one of those fantasy series that attempts to tell stand-alone stories with in each novel but then have an arc that progresses over the entire series. One thing I've noticed with these series is that the first book does a pretty good job of being self-contained and that usually the series gets increasingly more pear-shaped from there. The series that I like the best (such as Patricia Brigg's Mercedes Thompson series) are the ones that tell self-contained stor ...more
Kristina
It is really hard to describe how i felt about this book because the thoughts were so conflicting. On the one hand it felt one hundred percent like a cookie-cutter novel, from the classic Dungeons and Dragons thief, the war-like character with the mythical sword, the evil magician, and the hapless king, to the cops and robbers basis for the storyline between Eli and Miranda (if the author sees this review, yes I read the interview and it put all the pieces together on why I kept thinking it felt ...more
Ithlilian
The Spirit Thief is fun and exciting, and has a different magic system than I've read before. Harnessing spirits and using them is not a unique idea, I've seen it in video games, and other places, but I believe this is the first book I've read where it is employed. Eli is amusing, and complex at the same time. The other characters are equally entertaining and are more than just surface characters. I really do care about the world presented here and would love to know more about the governing bod ...more
Carolyn (Book Chick City)
Reviewed by Laura for www.BookChickCity.com - 7/10 on the blog.

In 'The Spirit Thief', Aaron has created a clever world where every thing in the world has a soul. Be it the wind or a singular piece of wood. Every item has a soul and a will of their own. Which is where wizards come in. Wizards or spiritualists can talk to the spirits, a good wizard treats spirits with respect and takes spirits into their service via a contract. A bad wizard takes away a spirit's will and forces them into servitude
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Jo  (Mixed Book Bag)
The Spirit Thief has been described as fast furious fun. In addition to all of those descriptions it is also full of great characters, good world building and an exciting plot. Eli and Miranda are the main characters but they are surrounded by a host of wonderful secondary characters that increase the fun in the book.

Eli Monpress is a thief. He is the greatest thief around. He is also a wizard who can ask sprits for help and is never refused. He wants a bounty worthy of his talent so he is worki
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Samantha
The book begins on a promising whimsical note, involving a conversation with a door. That being said, the book that follows largely fails to deliver on the initial promise, although there are good and even great moments here and there.

This is a spirited (see what I did there?), light-hearted adventure romp, set in a world where all things have "spirits", and magic involves getting these spirits to do your bidding - either by inviting them to voluntarily serve you, as the "Spiritualists" do, or
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3504189
Hello, my name is Rachel Aaron, and I write the Heartstriker books, a new Urban Fantasy series about misfit dragons, starting with Nice Dragons Finish Last. I also wrote The Legend of Eli Monpress fantasy series for Orbit Books about a wizard thief and the poor bastards who have to try and stop him. PLUS I'm also the author of the new, rolicking fun Science Fiction romance Fortune's Pawn under the ...more
More about Rachel Aaron...
The Spirit Rebellion (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #2) The Spirit War (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #4) The Spirit Eater (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #3) Spirit's End (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #5) The Legend of Eli Monpress (The Legend of Eli Monpress, #1-3)

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“First rule of thievery,' Eli said, grinning, 'only run if you're not coming back.' (...) 'First rule of thievery, never use the same entrance twice.' Miranda rolled her eyes. 'How many 'first rules' of thievery do you have?' 'When one mistake can mean your head on a pike, every rule's a first rule,' Eli said cheerfully.” 7 likes
“How did you get in here?' (...) 'How I got here isn't important, because I could do it twenty times again, each time a different way.” 6 likes
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