The Shadow Thieves

The Shadow Thieves

Illustrated by: Eric Fortune
For Ages: 8 - 12
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See that girl, the one with the bright red hair, overstuffed backpack, and aura of grumpiness? That's Charlotte Mielswetzski. And something extra-ordinary is about to happen to her.

Oh, it's not the very cute kitten that appears out of nowhere and demands to go home with her. It's not the sudden arrival of her cousin Zee, who believes he's the cause of a mysterious sickness that has struck his friends back in England. It's not her creepy English teacher Mr. Metos, who takes his mythology lessons just a little too seriously. And it's not the white-faced, yellow-eyed men in tuxedoes, who follow Charlotte everywhere.

What's so extraordinary is not any one of these things....It's all of them. And when Charlotte's friends start to get sick one by one, Charlotte and Zee set out to find a cure. Their quest leads them to a not-so-mythical Underworld, where they face rhyme-loving Harpies, gods with personnel problems, and ghosts with a thirst for blood.

Charlotte and Zee learn that in a world overrun by Nightmares, Pain, and Death, the really dangerous character is a guy named Phil. And then they discover that the fate of every person -- living and dead -- is in their young hands.

In her dazzling debut for young readers, Anne Ursu weaves a tale of myth and adventure, danger and magic that will keep readers engrossed until the very last secret is revealed.
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  • Atheneum Books for Young Readers | 
  • 432 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781416934479 | 
  • May 2006 | 
  • Grades 3 - 7
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Reading Group Guide

A Reading Guide to THE SHADOW THIEVES By Anne Ursu
ABOUT THE BOOK
Charlotte and Zee uncover a mystery that is causing all of their friends to become seriously ill. Their quest for the cure leads them to a not-so-mythical Underworld, where they face rhyme-loving Harpies, gods having problems with their personnel, and ghosts with a thirst for blood. They discover on their journey that the fate of every person -- living and dead -- is in their young hands. In her dazzling debut for young readers Anne Ursu weaves a tale of myth and adventure, danger, and magic that will keep readers engrossed until the very last secret is revealed.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Anne Ursu was raised in Minnesota and currently lives in Cleveland, Ohio, with her husband, son and cats. The Shadow Thieves is the first in a trilogy. For more information, visit www.cronuschronicles.com
BEFORE READING
What do you know about the Greek myths? Why do you think these stories have been passed down for thousands of years? What is the underworld in mythology? Who presides over it?
DISCUSSION TOPICS
1. Describe Charlotte, both her physical appearance and her personality. How does she get along with her parents? Her peers? Would you be her friend? How would she fit in at your school? What are her strengths and weaknesses?
2. Why is Zee sent to his cousin's house? How do kids from Charlotte's school treat him? Why? Is his presence good for see more

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