Little Thieves by Margaret Owen – Book and Audio Review

Hello fellow book nerds!

I’m here with a review of one of my most anticipated reads of 2021 (yes, I’m just now getting to it) and my first disappointment of 2022.

I received an advanced copy from Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group but used the finished audio copy for my review.

Happy Reading!

Little Thieves

Margaret Owen

3 out of 5 stars


Taken from Goodreads

Vanja Schmidt knows that no gift is freely given, not even a mother’s love—and she’s on the hook for one hell of a debt. Vanja, the adopted goddaughter of Death and Fortune, was Princess Gisele’s dutiful servant up until a year ago. That was when Vanja’s otherworldly mothers demanded a terrible price for their care, and Vanja decided to steal her future back… by stealing Gisele’s life for herself.

The real Gisele is left a penniless nobody while Vanja uses an enchanted string of pearls to take her place. Now, Vanja leads a lonely but lucrative double life as princess and jewel thief, charming nobility while emptying their coffers to fund her great escape. Then, one heist away from freedom, Vanja crosses the wrong god and is cursed to an untimely end: turning into jewels, stone by stone, for her greed.

Vanja has just two weeks to figure out how to break her curse and make her getaway. And with a feral guardian half-god, Gisele’s sinister fiancé, and an overeager junior detective on Vanja’s tail, she’ll have to pull the biggest grift yet to save her own life.


I really wanted to like this book. With a beautiful cover and intriguing plot, I thought I’d be sold for this book. Unfortunately that was not the case. The first half of this book was just boring. There wasn’t much to draw me in and the curse wasn’t as interesting as I thought it was going to be. It was just not interesting. I almost decided not to finish the book but I looked over some reviews and a bunch stated that the second half was better, so I figured I’d continue and give it a shot. While I do agree that the second half of the book was a lot better because the plot was finally going somewhere, it did not make up for the first half of the book. I thought that everything beside the curse was interesting but most of the book was about the curse. I wish the secrecy of the margrave was the main focus of this story. I think it would have been more interesting. It would have resulted in a shorter book also, which would have been okay with me.

There was really only one character I liked in the book. And that would be Ragne. I did not like Vanja at all which is probably a big reason on why this book didn’t work for me. I thought that I’d like her better as the book went on but I didn’t really. So I didn’t really care if she broke the curse or not. Emeric was alright but nothing really stood out from him as well. Ragne was honestly the only redeeming character.

Final Thoughts

Overall, Little Thieves by Margaret Owen was not really for me. I absolutely appreciated the atmosphere of the book as it did remind me of the darker fairytales but that was about it. The first half of the book dragged for me and while the second half was better, it did not make up from the beginning. I did not connect or like any of the characters except for Ragne. I pushed through hoping it would get better but unfortunately it did not get better enough for me. I do recommend reading reviews of people who loved this book and give it a try yourself.

Audio Review

NOTE: The narration does not affect my rating of the book

I was so excited when I opened the audiobook and noticed that it was Saskia Maarleveld narrating. She is one of my all time favorite narrators. I think this audio is good and bad. Saskia performed amazingly and really helped with the German words but honestly I was a little lost in the very, very beginning because of the writing. It definitely has that dark fairytale fantasy aspect and if you aren’t a seasoned audiobook reader, I would recommend physically reading this one. Or listening and reading at the same time if you aren’t familiar with German (like myself).

Links for Purchase



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