Cover Image: The Thief Who Sang Storms

The Thief Who Sang Storms

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Member Reviews

I have absolutely loved reading this and have now started a 10 year old reading club at school with this book. 

Sophie really has a way with words especially describing characters. I loved the relationships between all of the characters and how this was developed in the little bonus chapters hidden between normal chapters. 

I would recommend this book as well as Sophies other books .
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Lyrical, beautifully plotted and evocative.  I love Sophie Anderson's books: they have the feel of the fairy stories I loved so much as a child, and the writing makes you care deeply about the characters.
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This was such a lovely book! The premise sounded so good, and trust Sophie Anderson to actually deliver. At times it was a bit slow, but overall I enjoyed this immensely.
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I was looking forwards to reading this after the success of the author's previous book but really struggled to get going with this one. It all seemed a bit far-fetched and bizarre and unfortunately I found it really difficult to stick with.
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Even before seeing the cover, this title teased my curiosity! Then the cover was such a treat! I LOVE the design & artwork! 

We start with an island shaped like a broken heart. 
The humans live on one side of the island, and the alkonosts - the bird-people - all live on the other.

It only takes moments to feel totally immersed in the characters' lives in this story. 

Things aren't always what they seem ... & a very creative & fascinating adventure unfolds, taking us with it completely.

Themes of loss are present throughout the story and the suthor deals with things sensitively. 

Linnet is still waiting for her singing magic to come - with hope and her belief that she really is destined to do something special make her a tremendous, warm character who you will end up loving.

 There is a huge, very unexpected twist at the end! 
Fantastic story.
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When the heartbreaking tragedy happens on the island of Monrovia fear drives people apart. Fear of the unknown and suspicion breed to create a toxic environment where no-one can thrive. Linnet and her father Nightingale are forced to move away from their community, from their friends and to eke out a pitiful and shadowy life in the swamps. They are bird people and the original inhabitants of the island, but after years of living peacefully their world was shattered when the tragedy struck. They do the best they can until Nightingale is captured and Linnet is determined to rescue him, whatever the odds. With unexpected twists and turns and a good dose of magic, this is a fabulous reminder of how forgiveness is better than hatred, how kindness rules and how differences between people can be used in a positive way. I really enjoyed this and I also liked the unexpected link ‘The House with Chicken Legs’. It’s an excellent book for older primary and lower middle school aged children. It also makes for a good set reading text as whilst the book is first and foremost an excellent and gripping story, there are a number of themes that can be explored as class activities or projects.
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Sophie Anderson writes beautifully as always. The world was interesting, set in a swamp where bird people, Alkonosts, were ghettoized away from their home they had lived in along side human neighbours over fears of their singing magic. This had a lesson in otherness and parallels with the mistreatment of Jews in the early Nazi regime, told in a magical and softer way for children. Promoting unity and friendship.

Anderson's writing is always full of emotion and family bonds and accepting being different. This book hit all these notes. However, the reason I chose this book was for the singing magic and there wasn't much of that in the story, nor were there many storms. I was expecting an epic finale of magic and thunder clouds and was  disappointed. There is a nice community ending though. Despite this, it was a nice story. Perfect for school libraries.
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this is a magical and stunning story. As always with this writer, this story is compelling, addictive and just utterly beautiful. This books needs to be read to make everyone’s childhoods and storytelling experiences memorable.
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What another cracking story from Sophie! A heartwarming tale with a powerful message that will appeal to readers new to Sophie and those well accustomed to the high quality of rich narrative worlds that she creates. I love the way she interweaves mystical folklore into stories that are modern and fresh with characters who are very real and have flaws. A story of friendship, betrayal, peace, kindness, overcoming fear, respect and destiny. This will definitely be a recommended read in my classroom and I hope that it will become a firm favourite when we read for pleasure!
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I’ve read (and own, including this one) all of Sophie Anderson’s books and have loved them all. I enjoyed all of the characters and the storyline kept me reading until the end. I feel like the ending was quite quick and could’ve been a bit longer. That said, I recommend to anyone who likes the genre and I’m already looking forward to the next one. 

Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for the ARC.
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Another belter from Sophie Anderson, her books never fail to deliver. A story of how differences are only a barrier  if you let them be, and how we all need to look for the good in people abs celebrate and embrace difference. 
Of course, no book of Sophie Anderson’s would be complete without a cheeky visit from the house with chicken legs, I’m so glad that the house made yet another appearance in such a well thought out way, long may this continue!
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Linnet is an alkonost, a person of birdlike qualities with feathers in place of hair. She lives on the island of Morovia, an island that once lived in perfect harmony of both alkonists and humans alike. Until one day, disaster strikes, changing the course of Morovia's future forever. 
The Thieft Who Sang Storms follows Linnet in present day who lives in hiding for fear of being captured by the humans who have now turned against her kind. With flashbacks into the past to give the reader an idea of how beautiful Morovia once was. Can Linnet, just a young alkonist without singing magic, live up to her name and bring back Morovia to a place of unity?
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Sophie Anderson writes the most magical middle-grade stories. Stories that are deeply inspired by and read like fairy tales and The Thief Who Sang Storms is not an exception.

I was a bit upset that unlike the author's previous books, this one isn't inspired by Slavic mythology (or if it is, it's not a part that I'm familiar with which is not impossible - there are so many Slavic cultures and myths!). But it doesn't take away from the story's magic. The magic system and the world is unique and it tells a beautiful story of people and alkonosts (bird-like creatures) relearning to live in harmony, side by side, after a horrible accident that pits them against each other. 

As usual in Anderson's books, we get strong familial and friendship bonds that are at the centre of the story. This time we also get two pet companions, Whiskers and Lumpy, a swamp rat and a toad.

My favourite part was definitely a cameo of certain characters from Anderson's another story. I love how her books correspond to one another, one way or another.

Overall, I definitely recommend this one to middle graders and older people who crave some fairy tales in their life.
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This is simply the magic and wonder that I would come to expect from a Sophie Anderson book. It was beautifully written, the world was just stunning and the characters were wonderful. It was full of heartache and love and unintentionally relevant to the world we are currently living in. A masterclass of a middle grade book. Thank you so much for the ARC. I have already preordered the physical copy.
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I love Sophie Anderson's books, so was delighted to be given the chance to read this ARC. The writing is beautiful: atmospheric and captivating - just as I would expect. I had to work quite hard for the first few chapters to work out what was going on and who the main characters were. I liked this as it really sucked me into the plot. The vocabulary is challenging and will certainly stretch even the most able reader - i had to look up alkonosts and thought this was a really interesting difference.

The characters are so individual and interesting: Linnet has some unique friends - especially Lumpy and Whiskers. I thought the relationship with Hero was cleverly plotted.

However, I found the nostalgic memory chapters a little clunky, which I am sure was deliberate by such a skilled storyteller as Anderson, but I didn't like it at all. The use of ellipses to take the reader elsewhere was repetitive and tiring. I understand they filled in the back story, but wished there was a less overt way to do this. It is a technique that we often try to teach children not to do.

A wonderful story with a powerful message - one to read - but I preferred other titles which I have read previously by this amazing author!
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Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for an early review copy. 

I’ve loved reading Sophie Anderson's previous books and was really looking forward to reading this one. 

The book is centred on Russian folklore. An area where people and alokonasts(known as bird-people) are not able to live peacefully due to tragedy that occurred there.

Due to something that happened in the incident that occurred Linnet’s mother died. She lives with her father, but after he is arrested, she begins on a journey to save him.

A beautiful story of love, bravery and friendship. Even though the characters had their faults, you still hoped everything worked out their way. 

Recommend this book.
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The latest book from Sophie Anderson is a timely tale of division, courage and the power of love and friendship. 
On the island of Morovia, the two groups of inhabitants the humans and the alkonosts (the bird-people) live separate lives following a terrible tragedy. The effects of prejudice, power and division are clear to see. The protagonist Linnet (who lost her mother in the tragedy) is exiled to the deepest swamps along with her father Nightingale and the other alkonosts where their singing magic is banned. Linnet longs for her singing powers to develop so that she can use them to work towards reconciliation for her homeland. However, an act of theft against the humans leads to consequences that mean Linnet is more alone than ever. With her father arrested, Linnet embarks upon a quest to save him before it is too late. Drawing upon her inner strength and with the help of friends (old and new) a dangerous and unpredictable mission is undertaken. Love, courage and hope are tested along the way as grief, betrayal, prejudice and fear make success seem impossible.
This magical adventure and the timeless messages within its pages will appeal to readers old and young. I will certainly be recommending it to my students!
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Enjoyed this middle grade book about magic, songs, and grumpy yeti guardians. This is a beautiful story about prejudice, unity, and friendship. Linnet’s journey through wrecks, swamps and more makes her understand that being without magic might not mean that she is powerless.
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3,5 stars 

I've heard great things about Sophie Anderson's middle grade books so I was quite happy to pick up The Thief Who Sang Storms for review. I didn't love it as I hoped I would but that doesn't change that I can see what appeals others to her writing. And I will still pick up other books by her for sure.

The Thief Who Sang Storms follows 13 year old Linnet who has been living in the swamp for the last 3 years. Ever since the flood and the death of the queens the island has been divided. The alkonosts, the bird people, are being prosecuted for using their singing magic. When Linnet's father gets taken she is determined to free him.

This book has a wonderful setting of three islands that float over the ocean in different directions, sometimes coming close, sometimes moving away from one another. Each island has its own people. Morovia as the Alkonosts, bird people who can use singing magic. They took humans onto their island hundreds of years ago. It is a beautiful setting, whimsical in places. But it felt like not enough was done with it.

I wanted to really settle into this story but I was constantly yanked out by the many chapter memories we got thrown into every few chapters. Some where a good addition but others could have been trimmed down to a paragraph memory in the previous chapter. It felt too much like a formule. Two and three chapters with the ending with a set prelude to the memory. It ruined the flow of the story to me.

It was also very idealistic. The solution, the forgiveness, always seeing the good in others. I know this is middle grade and fantasy but a bit of realism would have been nice. Kids of this age, especially in this era, aren't stupid about repurcussions.

On the other hand I liked how it dealt with some themes. Like grief. How you can't rush grief and how everyone grieves in their own way. Or how important it is to talk with each other about feelings. That parents can sometimes close off from their kids with their grief and feelings but that it is important to talk with your kids about it. But there is also no judgement towards the parent. I loved that. Because there are the themes so many kids these days have to deal with.

So all in all I do think it is a good middle grade to recommend for its messages but a bit less for the execution of the story.
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Having loved all of Sophie Anderson's previous books, I had high hopes for The Thief Who Sang Storms and I was not disappointed. Once again based on Russian folklore, this book tells of a land torn apart by a tragedy, where humans and alokonosts (bird-people) no longer live in harmony. 

Linnet is a young alkonost who lost her mother in the tragedy. Along with her father, she tries to survive in the swamplands but when her father is arrested she must embark on a dangerous quest to save him. 

This is a story of bravery and courage, friendship and love. Despite their flaws, the characters have you rooting for them and for everything to work out well. And an appearance from an old friend is always welcome.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for allowing me to read an advance copy of this book.
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