September 30, 2014

ARC Review of Midnight Thief by Livia Blackburne

Release Date: July 8, 2014
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Page Count: 376
Format: ARC
Genre: YA/Fantasy
Growing up on Forge’s streets has taught Kyra how to stretch a coin. And when that’s not enough, her uncanny ability to scale walls and bypass guards helps her take what she needs.
But when the leader of the Assassins Guild offers Kyra a lucrative job, she hesitates. She knows how to get by on her own, and she’s not sure she wants to play by his rules. But he’s persistent—and darkly attractive—and Kyra can’t quite resist his pull.
Tristam of Brancel is a young Palace knight on a mission. After his best friend is brutally murdered by Demon Riders, a clan of vicious warriors who ride bloodthirsty wildcats, Tristam vows to take them down. But as his investigation deepens, he finds his efforts thwarted by a talented thief, one who sneaks past Palace defenses with uncanny ease.
When a fateful raid throws Kyra and Tristam together, the two enemies realize that their best chance at survival—and vengeance—might be to join forces. And as their loyalties are tested to the breaking point, they learn a startling secret about Kyra’s past that threatens to reshape both their lives.
In her arresting debut novel, Livia Blackburne creates a captivating world where intrigue prowls around every corner—and danger is a way of life.

Generally my favorite sub-genre within YA is fantasy and Midnight Thief was yet another reminder of why I love fantasy books so much. I devoured Midnight Thief in a single day and couldn't put it down for one single second and when I had to stop reading it all I could think about was what was happening in the book. While it wasn't on the same level as the Throne of Glass books or Snow Like Ashes, Midnight Thief still came within range of them.

The settings of Midnight Thief were fairly similar to other fantasy books and the places that seemed different like other cities and the mountain area weren't explored. Despite that, Midnight Thief still had some fantastic world-building and I loved seeing how it affected the story and plot. There was a stark difference between the setting of where Kyra, the first main character lived and Tristam, the second main character did. One lived on the poor side of the town and faced hardships and a rough lifestyle while the other lived inside the palace and had a easier lifestyle. I was genuinely interested in reading about places like the tavern Kyra lived in and would have liked to learn more about the palace and compound. Altogether, despite similarities with other books, Livia Blackburne managed to fill Midnight Thief with good world-building and settings that keeps you rooted to your spot as you read each page.

As usual with most books, it was in the characters that Midnight Thief shined the brightest. Within chapters of starting the book I had grown to like Kyra and her adopted family as well as Tristam after his early tragedy. Despite being an orphan and growing up in the streets Kyra managed to survive and even prosper a bit by becoming a skilled thief. She had her weaknesses (which were much less than I expected) but stood up for herself and for others. She may have been manipulated into doing several things that she didn't want to do but still managed to find a way to fight back and escape. From the beginning of the book to the end not that much time passes but it's obvious that Kyra grows and matures. After the events that happened towards the end of the book I'm definitely looking forward to what she does next. Tristam was one of those characters who I both disliked and liked at the same time. He makes several mistakes that hurt the people he loves as well as Kyra but in the end tries to fix them and becomes better. I'm not sure how I feel about his relationship with Kyra that expanded in the ending but I may end up on the positive side. Not that much was really shown about his past except for where he lived and several facts but I wouldn't mind learning more or even reading about his parents. The rest of the characters: James, Bella, Flick, Pashla, Malikel, and many more were all extremely well-written and developed. Even if you somehow managed to hate the rest of Midnight Thief there would be no way that you could hate these amazing characters.

The ending of the Midnight Thief ended in a bit of a cliffhanger and there are still tensions between the three main forces of the book, Assassins Guild, Demon Riders, and the Kingdom. I am definitely looking forward to the sequel and while it's only been an hour since I finished the book I'm already starting to get desperate for more. Midnight Thief is perfect for people who love fantasy, amazing characters, and a fast paced plot.

4.5/5 - Amazing Book


  1. Did you read the prequel novella Poison Dance because I read it and didn't like it. People keep telling me it was "different" from Midnight Thief, but not how it was different. They say I would probably like the novel, but I don't understand why an author would write a prequel novella in an entirely different style than the novel itself. I don't want to buy a book I am going to hate.

    1. I have not but I'm planning to although now that you've told me about her writing in a completely different style I'm a but worried.