The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke

The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke

book cover image from goodreads.com

Funke, Cornelia.  The Thief Lord  349 p.  Scholastic.  2002.  ISBN 978-0-439-40437-2.

What do you get when you mix two runaway brothers, a detective hired to find them, a young group of thieves, the streets and canals of Venice, Italy, and a magical merry-go-round that can make children turn into adults and adults turn into children?  You get a great caper!

The parents of Prosper and Bo, age 12 and five, have just died.  Their mean aunt and uncle are planning on adopting Bo, but not Prosper.  The boys run away from Hamburg, Germany to Venice, Italy because their deceased Mother loved Venice. When the boys get there, they find a street gang of other orphans who are led by Scipio, the mysterious Thief Lord.  They make their home in an abandoned movie theater and between their small-time pick-pocketing and the Thief Lord’s bigger thefts, they get food and clothes.

Victor Getz, a gentle, unmarried detective in Venice, has been hired by Prosper and Bo’s aunt and uncle to find the boys.  He quickly finds them, but  he doesn’t do what you would think he is going to do.  Scipio, the Thief Lord, has some secrets he’s hiding. To add even more suspense, the Thief Lord has accepted a job to steal a piece of a wooden wing that belongs to a magical merry-go-round.  The boys have to get the wing from the home of Ida Spavento, and she has some yappy dogs that may make it difficult.

The book is full of twists and turns and adventure.  The reader will  be left breathless with each turn of the page.  For a fantastic caper, set against a perfect backdrop, read The Thief Lord.

Genre: adventure, mystery, fantasy

Tags: Venice, caper, thief, siblings, runaway, detective, orphan,

Author website:  Cornelia Funke

Series:  This book is not part of a series.

A/R Reading level: 4.8

Interest level:  Grades 5-8

Link to Harvest Park Library catalog:  The Thief Lord

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