Book Review: A Book of Spirits and Thieves (Spirits and Thieves #1) by Morgan Rhodes

Modern-day sisters discover deadly ancient magic in book 1 of this Falling Kingdoms spin-off series!

Worlds collide in this suspenseful, page-turning Falling Kingdoms spin-off series, which explores a whole new side of Mytica—and an even darker version of its magic.

Crystal Hatcher, Modern-day Toronto: It’s a normal afternoon in her mother’s antique bookshop when Crys witnesses the unthinkable: her little sister Becca collapses into a coma after becoming mesmerized by a mysterious book written in an unrecognizable language. 

Maddox Corso, Ancient Mytica: Maddox Corso doesn’t think much of it when he spots an unfamiliar girl in his small village. Until, that is, he realizes that she is a spirit, and he is the only one who can see or hear her. Her name is Becca Hatcher, and she needs Maddox to help get her home.

Farrell Grayson, Modern-day Toronto: Rich and aimless Farrell Grayson is thrilled when the mysterious leader of the ultra-secret Hawkspear Society invites him into the fold. But when he learns exactly what he has to do to prove himself, Farrell starts to question everything he thought he knew about family, loyalty, and himself….

Fate has brought these young people together, but ancient magic threatens to rip them apart.

Rating: ★★★


First I’d like to say that I feel mislead and cheated by the cover of this book. There are no sword in this book. I repeat, THERE ARE NO SWORDS IN THIS BOOK. Can I know why on earth there is a female wielding a sword on the cover, then? HUUUUUUHHH? MAJOR LET DOWN, OKAY?

This is the first book in a spinoff to the Falling Kingdoms series. I haven’t read that series but I understood this book just fine.

This book, while interesting, has a decided lack of feelings. I would be reading, and something crazy important is happening and I would feel…nothing. That made it super hard to relate to the characters and, even more important, to fully immerse myself in the story. Like okay XXXX got stabbed. Cool story bro. Is it the writing style? Is it the story itself? I don’t know. All I know is that it kinda ruined the story for me.

Now on to the plot of the story.

The plot is unique and I really liked it. The story jumped straight into the action from the beginning; I didn’t boringly flip the pages waiting for important events to happen. Yes there was that lack-of-feelings going on but I still wanted to know how the book will end.

When there is more than one story line in a book, you automatically prefer one over the other. I liked Becca’s story line more than Crys’s even though the number of chapters dedicated to Becca’s story is only 1/3 of the book. One of the main reasons Crys’s part wasn’t my fav one is because I didn’t want to read Farrell’s pov or see him through Crys’s. His way of thinking got so twisted in the end… (more on that later).

Not a lot of things were revealed as this is the first book in the series and as we all know, the first book is usually introductory. I so saw the identity of Maddox’s father coming and I was really shocked with the connection that Crys’s family had with Markus’s organization.

Character Analysis


Crys always thought that her mother loves her sister more than her and because of that she tries to attract her mother’s attention by acting like a brat of dying her hair— though they end up fighting most of the time.

I really liked Crys. She is headstrong, really snarky, rebellious and takes no shit. But what I respected and admired the most is that she would do anything to help her family. Family is very important to me and those traits alone made Crys rise a lot in my eyes.

One thing that Crys and I disagreed over is Farrell. She was so taken with him for a while and I just hated his guts. But I had the privilege (or the not-so-privilege) of knowing his inner thoughts so I can’t really blame her.


I had serious issues with this dude. And by serious issues I mean serious, serious issues. Plain and simple, I did not like him. I thought he was a rude show off who thought he was better than everyone just because his pockets were deep. Let me tell you something darling, money doesn’t make you a better human. I was shocked that Crys actually seemed taken by him and I was glad that by the end of the book she saw him for the person he really is.

The one from last night, that was the real Farrell Grayson. A smug, overconfident, underprivileged creep who was a part of a horrible organization responsible for evil acts.

aaaaand that pretty much describes how I see him too.

In addition to that, I was terrified seeing his transformation after Markus gave him the marks. My initial hatred turned to fear and pity the more we progressed into the story. The more cold-hearted and hard he became the more I thought about the concept of power and the more I cursed those who use it for evil.


In the beginning, I kinda disliked Becca. She was this righteous character who didn’t care to see things from Crys’s point of view and simply labeled her as ‘bad’. Then after she traveled to Mytica in spirit form she grew on me and I started liking her as much as I liked Crys.

I wanted to see more sisterly moments between Crys and Becca. Becca was comatose/in another world throughout the majority of the story and the first or so chapter that she was there she spent it arguing with Crys. I hope we’ll get to see more of their relationship in the coming books


AH Maddox. The character who grew up the most throughout the story. He was a scared boy with zero self confidence in himself and his abilities in the beginning but by the end, and because he saw that there are people who depend on him, he gained that confidence and bam bam bam he became a different person.


His name alone makes me shudder. He’s even creepier than Farrell. What is worse than an evil person is an evil person who hides behind an I’m-a-good-person image. Markus acts as if what he does is for the good of the world, but in reality he’s a cold bloodied murderer who corrupts everyone around him. Or maybe he truly believes that what he’s doing is good (see here for more insights about that). Who knows.

Bottom Line

The writing in this book wasn’t that great and I had lots of issues with it feeling too disconnected from me. Farrell, Crys’s supposed love interest, creeped me out because we get to see his transformation into the monster Markus was molding him to be and how he slowly lost his humanity. I really liked the story though (and that’s why I gave this book 3 stars instead of 2.5) and I want to know what will happen so I’ll be picking up book 2.

Recommended to: People who don’t want sword fights in books. jkjk. People who like to see great character development and who don’t mind being inside a creepy, overconfident bastard’s head.

Have you read this book? What are your thoughts about it?

Some shameless self promotion: I made an instagram account! I’ll be sharing snippets of upcoming material as well as some of my baking addictions 😉 If you are interested, give me a follow! 


4 thoughts on “Book Review: A Book of Spirits and Thieves (Spirits and Thieves #1) by Morgan Rhodes

  1. thenightgirl August 17, 2015 / 10:20 pm

    Ugh, this sucks! I’ve just started reading the Falling Kingdoms series (already on to Book 2) and was looking forward to this spin-off. I absolutely love the cover but I hate when it’s not accurate to the book D:

    • Jinan August 17, 2015 / 10:24 pm

      ikr?? The cover is gorgeous and I just kept on waiting for it to tie into the story but it just never did!

      • thenightgirl August 17, 2015 / 10:30 pm

        Well at least now I know not to have the expectation of swords when I read it. Which I totally would have, if I hadn’t have read this.

        • Jinan August 17, 2015 / 10:33 pm

          haha glad to be of service, then 🙂

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