The Good Thief: A Novel
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Winner of the 2008 John Sargent, Sr. First Novel Prize * A Washington Post Best Book of 2008 * A Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2008
Richly imagined and gothically spooky, The Good Thief introduces one of the most appealing young heroes in contemporary fiction and ratifies Hannah Tinti as one of our most exciting talents writing today.
Twelve year-old Ren is missing his left hand. How it was lost is a mystery that Ren has been trying to solve for his entire life, as well as who his parents are, and why he was abandoned as an infant at Saint Anthony’s Orphanage for boys. When a young man named Benjamin Nab appears, claiming to be Ren’s long-lost brother, his convincing tale of how Ren lost his hand persuades the monks at the orphanage to release the boy and to give Ren some hope. But is Benjamin really who he says he is? As Ren is introduced to a life of hardscrabble adventure filled with outrageous scam artists, grave robbers, and petty thieves, he begins to suspect that Benjamin not only holds the key to his future, but to his past as well….
chest at the foot of the bed. Underneath, wrapped in a piece of stiff canvas, was a pair of worn, clean socks. The heels and toes were ragged. Ren could see where the pattern had already been fixed dozens of times. He held them up and recognized the size and style. He was not the only one wearing the drowned boy’s clothes. Dolly began to root through the knitting bag. He emerged with a ball of yarn, a set of darning needles, and a pair of tiny scissors. “I need a bed knob.” “For what?” “To fix
the rooftops, the sun so pink that it made the gutters shine. The streets below were slowly coming to life, the shops opening and the brothels closing. All the mousetrap girls had disappeared into the factory, and the door closed behind them like a giant mouth. Ren looked out at the river circling the town. He felt the hem of his coat. The stitches there were straight and evenly paced. They traveled along the seams, across the shoulders and down the sleeves. He thought of Mrs. Sands pushing the
There was a mountain of dirty dishes, curdled and sticky, piled on the counter, stacked on the shelves, and scattered across the floor. Broken teacups and bent forks, bowls that were cracked and plates with mold growing up along the edges. In the pantry he found a small jar of pickles hidden behind a sack of flour torn open, and he stuffed it into the bag. He walked past the broom that Mrs. Sands hit them with. And the sampler of the Lord’s Prayer hanging over the mantel. Ren chose only what he
of hat boys. They had moved down the street to cut them off, climbed onto the roof from an outside window, and were coming toward them now, waving to the others to stop firing. “Inside,” said the dwarf. “Quickly.” He dodged a pile of shingles and ran for a chimney. In a moment he was scaling the brick and made it over the top. He took one last look back at Ren, beckoned him on, and disappeared into the flue. The boy hurried after him. He had one leg at the edge of the chimney, then another,
each night. In the months to come, the kitchen would slowly be set right and cleaned, the table rebuilt and the preserves restocked in the pantry. And if she made a cake, it would be divided, with pieces set aside for Tom and the twins, and the biggest slices going to Ren and the dwarf. When the group had finished their picnic, a game of tag was started among the graves. The girl with the gap in her teeth chased Brom up and down the rows. He easily outran her, dodging in and out and around the