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Thieves Gambit by Kayvion Lewis

Kayvion Lewis is a US-born writer now living in the Bahamas. Known for the adventurous style of writing, Lewis releases one of the bigger things to happen to YA fiction in 2023 with Thieves’ Gambit. The first book in a series that focused on the biggest competition in the world of thieves where those involved play for much much more than the prize, they play for their lives and the lives of those they love.

The first sentence of the first page hooks like no other has this year: A Quest can’t trust anyone in this world - except for a Quest” and the high level of anticipation hangs the reader on to the very last page. It’s a world that sucks you in, wrings you out, and leaves you wanting more.

Taken from the first person perspective, the writing is high quality, particularly the use of dialogue which has a realism to it, and a quality to the style and energy created throughout the narrative. Lewis clearly knows how to put stories together and takes world building to a new level of detail for this age group. Reminiscent of The Hunger Games in some places, it carries the reader along the journey.

Leading the story is Rosalyn (Ross) Quest, the latest in a long generational line of thieves and, as aforementioned, Quests only trust Quests. The ruthlessness of the thieves is evident, but throughout it all, the spirit of family and trust is what holds everything together. When Ross’s mother is kidnapped she must make the heartbreaking decision to enter the games (The Thieves’ Gambit) it really is a case of life or death - for her mother.

Brutal and cunning, adventurous and fast paced, this is the type of novel that will captivate even the most reluctant of reader and take them into the world of the thieves and overcome all kinds of obstacles to achieve the goal of saving her mother, and allowing another to win her heart.

Reviewer: Chris Reed

Simon & Schuster

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