Source: Own book
Aided by the magic, which courses through her veins, Melke is able to walk unseen by mortal eyes. When a necklace she has stolen holds the key to both saving her brother's life and breaking the terrible curse, she must steal it back from a den of fire-breathing salamanders. Things are about to get very tough for Melke, especially when she comes to realise she may have to trust the very people who were out to kill her. The book is a rich, romantic fantasy tale set in a world where the ordinary and extraordinary co-exist, where nightmarish creatures live alongside men, and magic runs in the blood of mortals.
Thief With No Shadow has sat on my TBR shelf for quite awhile. I think I first heard of it when I read a local magazine... but that's a little hazy because it was way back! When I considered picking it up off the shelf I read some of the reviews on Goodreads that put me off! Always a mistake to read reviews by readers I have no idea about. However I decided now was the time and I have to say I actually enjoyed the book on the whole. Yes the reviewers were right about a few nasty details, but they pretty much happened "off the page" and while a little bizarre I let it go.
Melke and her brother Hantje are wraiths - they can change and make themselves unseen, although they don't do it often. Wraiths have a bad name as they frequently use this ability to steal and murder. Melke steals a necklace from Bastian sal Vere to give to the salamanders in exchange for them freeing her brother Hantje. Bastian pursues her with his hound Ender. He catches up with her and when the salamanders dump Hantje back at their entrance to their habitat, Bastian says he will exchange Hantje's healing for Melke stealing back the necklace. Hantje is near death.
On return to the sal Vere home Liana, Bastian's sister sets about healing Hantje - she has the magical gift of healing, although it's not easy. Bastian too has a magical gift - he can talk with dogs and he and his hound Ender have a strong bond.
The sal Vere property is going to ruin, it has been cursed by a creature of the sea, because the necklace originally was stolen from it. It returns at a certain time each year for the necklace and if its not returned it exacts a life. So the pressure is on!
I liked the characters, and the changes that happened within them as the story moved on. I especially developed a fondness for Ender the hound! The writing was excellent, and while this was all fantasy I enjoyed the tale despite some darkness and in the end goodness and light win out.
Emily Gee is a New Zealand author, who never intended to write. However her mother was a librarian and her father a well known author here in New Zealand. Eventually the inner urge to write caught up with her!