Museum of Thieves
by Lian Tanner
312 pages of survival in dystopian Jewel
Museum of Thieves takes places in the renamed city of Jewel, a fearful, depraved society where young children are kept on short leashes for their safety. The city is run by a Grand Protector who knows more about the past and the present than the rest of her people. She is working to bring balance back to the city, but know she must move slowly to maintain calm. The corrupt Fugleman (willing to gain power and control at all cost) and the Blessed Guardians will have none of that. The Blessed Guardians, supposedly kind and gentle souls, are anything but. They enforce the cruel laws stating that chain children to the authorities at all times. Care is a jail for children. The citizens have been brainwashed into thinking that all children must never be exposed to the dangers of the world and so they allow this lesser of two evils to define their lives.
Goldie Roth is twelve. It is her Separation Day. Her guardchain is about to be severed. Her life is upon her and she will be free to walk through the city alone for the first time. Just before her ceremonial release, the Fugleman halts the proceedings with news of the unthinkable – the murder of children, an attack from outside. He claims no one is safe and that the children cannot be freed. Goldie is faced with a choice: remain tied to her childhood, or cut the chain herself and run. Fuelled by desperation, she cuts and runs.
Goldie flees through the dark and daunting streets. At first she regrets her decision; she sees nowhere to go and winds up at the mysterious Museum of Dunt. This museum houses the records of her city. Why was the name changed? What happened to bring on so much fear? What does it mean to have past and present collide? Once in the museum, Goldie discovers it is alive. The rooms are ever-changing and maintained by an odd group. Goldie joins them and to learn the ways of the Museum. There is trouble brewing beneath the surface, as there always is when power is abused and dishonesty prevails. This trouble could destroy the entire city. Goldie, with the other keepers must find a way to save it…if it’s not too late.
The Museum of Thieves is the first book in the Keepers Trilogy. It is cleverly crafted and well written. When I finished I had so many questions I can’t wait to get the second, The City of Lies. I need to find out how Goldie’s story continues with the Keepers and if Jewel is able to become morally secure and trustingly productive city…that may not happen yet because the evil still lurks. It seems it has only temporarily been washed away. The Keeper Trilogy is definitely one to read – you won’t be able to put it down once you begin.