THE MAGIC THIEF by Sarah Prineas
So far, there are three books in the Magic Thief Series: The Magic Thief, Lost, and Found. (As of Sept. 2010, I believe five books are planned for the series.) I really like this series. We meet, Conn, a young orphan surviving on the streets of Wellmet by his slight of hand as a pickpocket, until he pickpockets a wizard--then things begin to change for Conn. Eventually, Conn becomes his apprentice. Conn must learn to read in runes, memorize spells, and locate a locus magicalicus--a stone that enables a wizard to perform magic. Conn must also face a force of dark magic looming over the city.
Ms. Prineas has carefully constructed this wonderful fantasy with it's own history and culture. And, her story is full of interesting and compelling characters. Conn is bright and honest. His wizard mentor, Nevery Flinglas, seems harsh and cold, but we learn he actually cares a great deal about Conn. I especially enjoyed the wizard's journal entries, "reproduced" periodically throughout the book. This gives us a unique insight into his thoughts and feelings.
When I read these books, I become immersed in the world of Wellmet. This is a sure pick for those who enjoyed Harry Potter or any fantasy fan. My children and I actually listened to the first one as an audio book. It was very well done. I didn't want to stop driving. We liked the book so much, we went to a talk by the author. We were the first in line to meet her. She autographed a book for each of us and wrote a message in Rune for us to decipher using the tranlation page in the books. The book's website may also be of interest to readers.
I've only read the first two and I can't wait to open up the third!!