Mark of the Thief

Mark of the Thief

Book - 2015
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When Nic, a slave in the mines outside of Rome, is forced to enter a sealed cavern containing lost treasures of Julius Caesar, he finds himself in possession of an ancient amulet filled with magic once reserved for the Gods, and becomes the center of a conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and destroy Rome.
Publisher: New York : Scholastic Press, ©2015.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9780545561549
Characteristics: 339 pages ;,22 cm.


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Mar 24, 2020

Mark of the Thief by Jennifer A. Nielsen is an amazing book! This outstanding story is about a runaway slave named Nic who discovers in a cave the lost treasure of Julius Caesar. This lost treasure is no ordinary treasure, but a treasure full of magic that gives its beholder powers that was once reserved only for the Gods. Magic that certain Romans would kill for. With the new surge of power pulsing through his veins. Nic now thirsts for freedom more than ever. However, instead he gets himself in the center of a conspiracy to overthrow the emperor and start a war that would destroy Rome from within when he finds out a deadly secret. In order to stop the rebellion he must harness his newfound powers and defeat the empires most powerful men and ruthless leaders. My personal experience of reading this book was that the plot was phenomenal and very interesting. I loved the Roman mythology and history combined into this amazing mix. The writing style however was not the best as it did feel slightly repetitive. The characters such as the main villain I did find a bit cliche. Also this author has a completely different type of plotline, atmosphere, and writing compared to Rick Riordan who also writes about stories based on mythology as well. I highly recommend this book for people who love action, adventure, mythology all mixed perfectly into one great book!


Mark of the Thief by Jennifer A. Nielsen is the first novel of the Mark of the Thief series. Nic, a slave in Ancient Rome, stumbles upon a mythical locket. I would rate this story 4/5 stars. The writing style was great, but I disliked the protagonist himself because he was a bit cliche. In fact, I found a majority of the characters cliche. The plot was beautiful, and the pacing was flawless. I didn’t see the plot twist coming, but it still didn’t shock me either. I loved the worldbuilding. I thought the fundamentals of magic in this society was really well-written. Alana, grade 11, of the Yorba Linda Teen Book Bloggers

Jul 06, 2019

I didn't get far in this book, since there are so many historical inaccuracies. First of all: bullae (sing. bulla) were not only worn by the wealthy. ALL young boys wore them, and it was said that if your bulla cord broke, you could have just died and the bulla saved you. Caesar's initials would also be GIC, not GJC, for Gaius Iulius Caesar. The Romans did not have the letter J. I think that this book could be entertaining for those who haven't studied Rome, but take it with a grain of salt, because parts of it do not comply with its historical setting.

Dec 07, 2018

Mark of the Thief is a great book. Originally, I read it because I liked other books by Jennifer Nielsen, but I read the rest of the series because I enjoyed it so much. It is set in Ancient Roman times so some of the vocabulary used can be confusing. I found that most words that I was unfamiliar with were explained, which doesn’t always happen with books set in different time periods. The book was very exciting and I couldn’t put it down. I loved every moment of reading it. Mark of the Thief is an amazing book that should be your next novel. @ToastieTaco of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

This book follows a young Roman slave, who finds Caeser’s treasure, and instead of cursing him, it gives him powers. With his powers, he decides to escape from his slave life, but he doesn’t realize just how powerful he had become. Ancient Rome is always a perfect setting for a book, and this book did not disappoint. Nielson uses just the right amount of history and fantasy to create the perfect book to read on a plane, or on a roadtrip. This book is only the first in a series, and it truly starts the series off in an interesting way. If you read the first book, then you must read the rest of series. I would rate this book a 9/10.
@Sonorous of the Teen Review Board at the Hamilton Public Library

Sep 17, 2018

Thi is an awesome book! I think that both the False Prince and this book are equally good. I love all the twists, especially in the ending. Nielsen never gives you the ending you expect, making the books a lot more interesting!

Jun 23, 2018

As an adult reading this book, I found it very repetitive in the writing, however, I tried to forgive that aspect because it's intended for a younger audience who will probably not read it as rapidly as I did.

Overall, the story was nice, and the magic and adventure elements were engaging. I've recommended it to friends based on its success as a story without what I'd call great writing. It might have been a lot more satisfying a read for a young person. But I couldn't wait to read the next book, regardless of how I felt the writing itself was lacking.

Aug 29, 2017


Jun 26, 2017

I would not recommend this book. Why? Because the author is much much better then this. The characters were shallow and weak. It felt like the author wrote this in a day. Not well done!

Jun 24, 2017

It was a pretty good book! With all the fantasy it engages readers to read it and never put it down. It would have been better if there was a little more less dragging on! WE GET IT ALREADY!

Jun 23, 2017

I didn't mind reading this book, but The False Prince was significantly better. The dialogue dragged here, and the characters were not well drawn. I wouldn't recommend it, but I wouldn't discourage anyone from reading it either.

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Jun 23, 2018

anihow1 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

Jun 24, 2017

brown_bear_1383 thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 10 and 70

May 31, 2017

black_eagle_573 thinks this title is suitable for 11 years and over


Add a Quote
Oct 14, 2020

"I figured Rome would probably not have another venatio for some time. Mostly because they had just lost every single one of their animals." - Nic

Oct 14, 2020

"Inwardly, I smiled. Maybe she didn't decide to become sad or happy, but I'd certainly seen her get angry." - Nic

Jul 13, 2016

"As part of the grand joke that had become my life, the gods had given me a master with the wit of a withered carrot and compassion of a wasp."


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