Book review: The Child's Thief by Brom

The Child’s Thief by Brom review


Book links: Amazon, Goodreads

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Over the past few decades, Brom has lent his distinctive vision to all facets of the creative industries, from novels and games to comics and film. He is the author of The Child Thief and the award-winning illustrated horror novels The Plucker and The Devil’s Rose. Brom is currently kept in a dank cellar somewhere just outside of Seattle.

Publisher: HarperCollins (August 18, 2009) Print length: 508 Formats: ebook, audiobook, paperback

If you think Peter Pan is an endearing fairy tale, think twice. Or just read Brom’s dark and twisted retelling of the original story. Just remember that it’s not a Disney fairy tale – this brutal retelling blurs the lines between hero and villain. And when I say brutal, I mean it. Severed heads, mutilated corpses, and guts spilling out of them occur frequently. However, the graphic violence serves a purpose – it shows the harsh reality of a world where survival isn’t guaranteed for anyone. And once again, I mean it. Don’t get too attached to anyone.
Brom’s writing style impressed me; it’s visceral and raw and paints a world that is both frightening and captivating. I think Brom’s background as an artist has allowed him to create such vivid images that are elegant and easy to picture in your mind’s eye. I couldn’t put this book down. If you’re a fan of dark fantasy or fairy tale retellings, you absolutely must read this book. 
Born of faerie blood, Peter lures abandoned children to join his Devils in Avalon. With nothing to lose and no one to love, they’re thrilled to escape to a place where you never have to grow up. The only problem? Peter deliberately hides the fact that the monsters of Avalon are real, and the Devils must constantly train for battle lest they be tortured, frightened, or suffer an even crueler fate. All the characters here have a tragic backstory, Peter most of all. I think some readers will despise the protagonists of the story, but I loved them for their imperfection, their anger, and their ability to find hope in a desperate place.
A few words about Peter. This golden-eyed boy has two goals: To save Lady Modron and to fight the “flesh-eaters,” whatever the cost. Peter’s temperament often swings between that of a battle-hardened warrior and that of a child, especially when he thinks of deceased Devils. He’s a dangerous guy, wild, unpredictable, and supernaturally fast. It’s hard to like him, but it’s even harder to hate him. You’ll see.
I loved Child’s Thief. It’s a phenomenal story. A must-read for fans of dark and twisted retellings.

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