Monday, March 4, 2013
Thieftaker by D.B. Jackson
Thieftaker by D.B. Jackson is a fantasy/mystery/historical fiction hybrid set in 1765 Boston.
Ethan Kaille is a thieftaker -- he recovers stolen goods for members of the city's merchant class (and usually the lower echelons of the merchant class, at that). He's also a conjurer, which is why he finds it best to keep a low profile, since witchcraft is illegal. When one of Boston's most influential citizens hires him to find a piece of jewelry belonging to a murdered woman, Ethan's first impulse is to turn the job down, not wanting to get involved in that sort of case. When it becomes clear to him that the woman was murdered through sorcery, and that he may be the only person in the city who can solve the case, he begins an investigation -- but what he uncovers is much more sinister than a single murder by a rogue conjurer.
I really enjoyed this story. While none of the individual elements of plot, setting, character, or magic system are particularly unique, they come together in a way that makes the book add up to more than the sum of its parts. Also, while I look forward to seeing what happens to Ethan in the future, I never felt that this book was merely setting up a series. If you enjoy both fantasy and historical fiction, give this book a try!
(Reviewed from a copy borrowed through my library system.)