The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

I’ve been busy, ya’ll. Busy reading, that is! Here’s my list for the year:

1. Sailing to Saratium by Guy Gavriel Kay
2. Farm 54 by Galit and Gilad Seliktar
3. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
4. The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner
5. The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson
6.  Taylor’s Temptation by Suzanne Brockmann

So on track to pass the 50 book challenge! Now, Mary promised me she would write a review for TFiOS with me, so I’m not going to talk about that right now, but here are three short reviews for the others:

The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner: This is 2nd world YA fantasy and a really fun adventure. I had some… misplaced expectations that weirded out my reading of the book. For instance, I spent about half of the book thinking that Gen, the main character, was a girl in disguise. This is not the case. Regardless of my own silliness, I can’t wait to read the rest of the series. Especially since I’ve heard that the romance in the later books (there’s none in this one) is fantastic.

The only bothersome thing was there there are no female main characters, but you know what? Not every book has to. There’s space in this world for books with no women – especially when it makes sense in the setting and plot, especially when there are only five characters who have more than a few lines. Plus, I know that in the later books there are plenty of women. A lack of racial or gender or sexuality diversity is most damning as a pattern over a large oeuvre of work. Looking over all of Terry Pratchett’s work, for instance (which I bring up because I just read Tia’s review of Going Postal over at Reading in Skirts), you see a serious minority of female characters, both main and supporting, that is a problem.

The other thing that I thought about while reading this book was, How many other awesome YA books have I missed from the 80s and 90s?! This is like… not discovering Tamora Pierce or Mercedes Lackey or Gail Carson Levine (bad example for me as I only read Ella Enchanted in high school) or Garth Nix or… Augh! It’s terrifying to think. Guys, what am I missing?!

Huh, that got longer than I thought it would. Guess I’ll talk about Name of the Star (so good, you guys) and Taylor’s Temptation another day! Ta!


5 thoughts on “The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

  1. I dunno, Terry Pratchett’s got some pretty great female characters: Susan Sto Helit, Grannies Weatherwax and Ogg, Angua from the Watch…then again, it’s been a while since I’ve read any Pratchett.

    I do agree with you on the “not every book has to” part. It can get old sometimes, but mostly it doesn’t bother me (like how it bothered Tia that Animist had a male main character instead of a female one). The nice thing is that there are more and more options out there if I AM in the mood to get some good, complex main female characters in my lit, so I don’t really feel underrepresented. You know, as a good, complex main female character myself.

    • Re: Pratchett – he does have great female characters, but I think when you compare the number of awesome/entertaining women to the number of awesome/entertaining men, the ratio is not impressive. Then again, that’s just my gut instinct – I haven’t done an actual study. ;)

      And indeed. It was super awkward that I assumed the MC would be female though, because of the female author and my knowledge that there was romance in the series. Whoopsiedoodle!

  2. I love this book and the series! And I agree- as the series continues, there are many more strong female roles, but you don’t see the world from their perspective. I really hope that the next book Whalen writes in the series has a female POV!

  3. Pingback: Name of the Staaaaar | Nisaba Be Praised

  4. Pingback: Name of the Staaaaar | Nisaba Be Praised

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