Book Review

Book Review: The Devil’s Thief (The Last Magician #2) by Lisa Maxwell

Rating: ☆☆☆
Audience: YA Historical Fantasy
Length: 704 pages
Author: Lisa Maxwell
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Release Date: October 9th, 2018
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads


In this spellbinding sequel to the New York Times bestselling The Last Magician, Esta and Harte set off on a cross-country chase through time to steal back the elemental stones they need to save the future of magic.

Hunt the Stones.
Beware the Thief.
Avenge the Past.

Esta’s parents were murdered. Her life was stolen. And everything she knew about magic was a lie. She thought the Book of Mysteries held the key to freeing the Mageus from the Order’s grasp, but the danger within its pages was greater than she ever imagined.

Now the Book’s furious power lives inside Harte. If he can’t control it, it will rip apart the world to get its revenge, and it will use Esta to do it.

To bind the power, Esta and Harte must track down four elemental stones scattered across the continent. But the world outside the city is like nothing they expected. There are Mageus beyond the Brink not willing to live in the shadows—and the Order isn’t alone in its mission to crush them.

In St. Louis, the extravagant World’s Fair hides the first stone, but an old enemy is out for revenge and a new enemy is emerging. And back in New York, Viola and Jianyu must defeat a traitor in a city on the verge of chaos.

As past and future collide, time is running out to rewrite history—even for a time-traveling thief. 


I finally picked this series back up (I don’t know why it took me so long, I loved The Last Magician!). This was a hefty tome to read, and was filled with a lot…and nothing…all at the same time.

My biggest complaint is the length, there was no way this needed to be 700 pages. It became very unfocused and searching after ONE stone took up the entire book. It led to off pacing, moments where the characters themselves were dragging their feet and I was wishing things would get a move on.

The writing is great though. Even with how thick it is, I didn’t start feeling that strain until late in the second half of the book. I wanted to read every word, wanted to know what was going to happen next. I think it’s also because I enjoy most of the characters. They’re endearing and frustrating, which makes them feel real. Esta probably annoyed me the most because she kept FLAT OUT REFUISNG to let Harte help her with anything. It was like she had to prove she could do anything on her own, every. dang. time. I need this character arc to bring in some ability to ask for and accept help.

There’s MANY points of view here. Some that made sense, I understood, was overall fine with. Then, there were others that I’m questioning why they were necessary? I don’t think the handful of them really added anything and probably could have been left out and the story wouldn’t be lacking.

The historical aspects of this were interesting. I haven’t read a book set in this time period and in this location. I liked the Author’s Note at the end as well that explained some more of the history, her writing choices and other books to read on the subject. I love when this is put in there for historical fiction-ish based books.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Historical Fiction / Fantasy
  • Language: some
  • Romance: kisses to heated make-out
  • Violence: physical altercations, explosions, magical attacks, train wrecks, poisoning
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: hate crime, racism, substance abuse, pain-med addiction

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