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Mark of the Thief

Cover of Mark of the Thief

Mark of the Thief

Mark of the Thief Series, Book 1
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Jennifer A. Nielsen, author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling Ascendance Trilogy, has woven an electrifying tale of greed and power, magic and destiny, and one boy's courage at the heart of it all. When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing the lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds much more than gold and gemstones: He discovers an ancient bulla, an amulet that belonged to the great Caesar and is filled with a magic once reserved for the Gods—magic some Romans would kill for. Now, with the deadly power of the bulla pulsing through his veins, Nic is determined to become free. But instead, he finds himself at the center of a ruthless conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and spark the Praetor War, a battle to destroy Rome from within. Traitors and spies lurk at every turn, each more desperate than the next to use Nic's newfound powers for their own dark purposes. In a quest to stop the rebellion, save Rome, and secure his own freedom, Nic must harness the magic within himself and defeat the empire's most powerful and savage leaders.

Jennifer A. Nielsen, author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling Ascendance Trilogy, has woven an electrifying tale of greed and power, magic and destiny, and one boy's courage at the heart of it all. When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing the lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds much more than gold and gemstones: He discovers an ancient bulla, an amulet that belonged to the great Caesar and is filled with a magic once reserved for the Gods—magic some Romans would kill for. Now, with the deadly power of the bulla pulsing through his veins, Nic is determined to become free. But instead, he finds himself at the center of a ruthless conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and spark the Praetor War, a battle to destroy Rome from within. Traitors and spies lurk at every turn, each more desperate than the next to use Nic's newfound powers for their own dark purposes. In a quest to stop the rebellion, save Rome, and secure his own freedom, Nic must harness the magic within himself and defeat the empire's most powerful and savage leaders.

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  • Available:
    1
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    1
Levels-
  • ATOS:
    5.2
  • Lexile:
  • Interest Level:
    MG
  • Text Difficulty:
    4

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Reviews-
  • DOGO Books happypug12 - When this book started, immediately I was brought back to one of my favorite book series: Gods and Warriors. (I almost thought I had accidentally picked up the Gods and Warriors book again.) But after the first chapter I realized that this was a whole different story. Nic finds the Bulla, which is filled with the overpowering magic bestowed by one of the gods–the question is: which god or goddess? Nic's wildest dreams comes true–along with some of his worst nightmares too. Another user of magic searches tirelessly for him and his bulla, seeking to harness the magic it contains. Who really are Nic's allies and enemies? Or is there really no difference between them? In this well-paced fantasy story, Nic is pitted against the beasts, magic itself, griffins, family, and the desires of his own heart. I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel!
  • Publisher's Weekly

    December 1, 2014
    In vivid first-person narrative, Nielsen (the Ascendance Trilogy) sketches a slave’s-eye view of the Roman Empire. Five years of hard labor in the mines haven’t quelled Nic’s will to survive. Neither naïve nor a fool, his main weakness is lack of experience. Thus his story is as much about his education in the deviousness of human behavior as it is about Nic’s magical fate. Dropped down a mine shaft to search for a possible buried trove, Nic emerges with a griffin, a scar, and a golden bulla, a magical amulet that once belonged to Julius Caesar. Freedom is within reach, but Nic won’t abandon his younger sister. Instead, he and the griffin are turned over to Rome, where Nic becomes a pawn of schemers struggling to control the city—or destroy it. Set during the reign of Tacitus, the story is true to the political and social culture of the time without committing too closely to its political history. This maximizes Nielsen’s scope for creating page-turning twists while evoking a milieu that retains its appeal for history buffs. Ages 10–14. Agent: Ammi-Joan Paquette, Erin Murphy Literary Agency.

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    Scholastic Inc.
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Mark of the Thief
Mark of the Thief
Mark of the Thief Series, Book 1
Jennifer A. Nielsen
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