Amanda's Reviews > Thieftaker

Thieftaker by D.B. Jackson
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Jul 06, 12

really liked it
bookshelves: arc, alternate-history, boston, historic-fiction, series, urban-fantasy
Read from June 30 to July 05, 2012

I am a real sucker for a good Boston during the American Revolution story. So when this title showed up I snapped it up. I’m glad I did because it’s an interesting take on the Stamp Act Riots.

This is an interesting piece of historic fiction, because it’s more like urban fantasy historic fiction. Is that a genre? Can it be? What on earth would we call it? In any case, I was in heaven, because I love BOTH urban fantasy and history so having both in one book was heaven. I mean first it’s breeches and three corner hats then it’s look at this illusion of a creepy little girl. Brilliant.

I struggled a bit with Ethan, which in retrospect wasn’t a bad thing. That shows he’s a realistic, well-rounded character. But let’s be honest. I’m more of a Sam Adams revolutionary type. Ethan served in the British Navy and is all “oh these hooligans.”

As a Bostonian, can I just say, I haven’t seen a book so intent on giving actual street names and buildings before, but it worked. They are totally accurate. I could completely visualize not just the streets but the entire routes Ethan was walking along. Granted, it was as if through a looking glass, since when I walk them they’re a bit different than in 1767, but still. It was very cool.

The magic portion of the book was also unique. Ethan has to cut himself to get blood to work the more powerful spells. The less powerful ones he can work with surrounding grasses, plants, etc… This makes the interesting problem that people struggle in fist-fighting him because if he bleeds he just uses it to work spells. It’s a nice touch.

So with all this glowing, why not five stars? Well, honestly, Ethan bugged me so much for the first 2/3 of the book that I kept almost stopping in spite of all the good things. He’s just such a…a…Tory. For most of the book. Being irritated almost constantly by Ethan kind of pulled me out of the world and the story, which I wish hadn’t happened, because it really is such a cool world. I get what Jackson was trying to do, character development wise, but the payoff in the end was almost missed because I kept stopping reading due to being irritated with Ethan. Perhaps if his change of heart had started to show up a bit sooner it would have worked better for me.

Overall, though, this is well-researched and thought out version of Boston during the Stamp Act Riots. Fans of historic fiction and urban fantasy will get a kick out of seeing the latter glamoring up the former.

Check out my full review. (Link will be live July 9, 2012).

Note: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Quotes Amanda Liked

D.B. Jackson
“Any noble cause will encounter its share of setbacks. The strength of that cause is measured in how the men who fight for it respond. We refuse to give up, which is why we will prevail eventually.”
D.B. Jackson, Thieftaker


Reading Progress

07/03/2012
18.0%
07/04/2012
57.0% "....although I am enjoying the read, I am suspicious it is Tory leaning, which is hella weird and awkward for this Bostonian."

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