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A lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond-- the high-society intrigue of Richelle Mead's Glittering Court series meets the romance of Melissa de la Cruz's Alex and Eliza. In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to A lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond-- the high-society intrigue of Richelle Mead's Glittering Court series meets the romance of Melissa de la Cruz's Alex and Eliza. In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to be known as the Hope Diamond from King Louis XIV, she has one final chance to convince the King that her motives were pure. If she fails, this night may be her last. Recording her confession is Rene, a scribe for the king and the man she loves. But Rene won't even look her way, let alone begin to forgive her for her betrayal of him. Before Juliet was imprisoned, she was the daughter of the finest gem cutter in all of Paris. The young King Louis XIV hand-selected Jean Pitau to be his crown jeweler, the only man who could make him shine like the sun. When Louis purchases the Tavernier Violet, a large, deep-blue diamond the likes of which the French court has never seen, Jean is tasked with turning it brilliant. But Juliet's father has never cut a diamond quite like this--and shaping it is risky business. While Jean spirals into depression, Juliet takes it upon herself to have the diamond cut for the King. But with every misstep, she brings her family closer to ruin, and closer to probable death at morning's light once Louis casts his sentence.


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A lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond-- the high-society intrigue of Richelle Mead's Glittering Court series meets the romance of Melissa de la Cruz's Alex and Eliza. In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to A lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond-- the high-society intrigue of Richelle Mead's Glittering Court series meets the romance of Melissa de la Cruz's Alex and Eliza. In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to be known as the Hope Diamond from King Louis XIV, she has one final chance to convince the King that her motives were pure. If she fails, this night may be her last. Recording her confession is Rene, a scribe for the king and the man she loves. But Rene won't even look her way, let alone begin to forgive her for her betrayal of him. Before Juliet was imprisoned, she was the daughter of the finest gem cutter in all of Paris. The young King Louis XIV hand-selected Jean Pitau to be his crown jeweler, the only man who could make him shine like the sun. When Louis purchases the Tavernier Violet, a large, deep-blue diamond the likes of which the French court has never seen, Jean is tasked with turning it brilliant. But Juliet's father has never cut a diamond quite like this--and shaping it is risky business. While Jean spirals into depression, Juliet takes it upon herself to have the diamond cut for the King. But with every misstep, she brings her family closer to ruin, and closer to probable death at morning's light once Louis casts his sentence.

30 review for The Jewel Thief

  1. 4 out of 5

    Melissa

    A captivating tale set in 17th century France, and in a world a knew nothing about: gem-cutters. I was fascinated by this story, by how Juliette was ready to risk everything to save her father. I liked how the story is told from Juliette's perspective, and that she mentions René, her lover, directly while narrating it, because, well... she was telling him her story, hoping to save herself, or, at least, their love. It is a unique story that will let you wish you could time-travel. Many thanks to A captivating tale set in 17th century France, and in a world a knew nothing about: gem-cutters. I was fascinated by this story, by how Juliette was ready to risk everything to save her father. I liked how the story is told from Juliette's perspective, and that she mentions René, her lover, directly while narrating it, because, well... she was telling him her story, hoping to save herself, or, at least, their love. It is a unique story that will let you wish you could time-travel. Many thanks to PenguinTeen Canada for the complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Tara (Spinatale Reviews)

    The Jewel Thief is an absolute hidden gem. This lush, beautifully written historical fiction novel swept me off my feet. Although the story was a bit slow at times, everything came together beautifully at the end. I loved Mobley’s choice to tell this story as a story within the novel. Given that Juliet is incarcerated for most of the novel, her telling the story to René felt more intimate than it would have otherwise. Although some of the ending is revealed at the beginning of the novel, I alway The Jewel Thief is an absolute hidden gem. This lush, beautifully written historical fiction novel swept me off my feet. Although the story was a bit slow at times, everything came together beautifully at the end. I loved Mobley’s choice to tell this story as a story within the novel. Given that Juliet is incarcerated for most of the novel, her telling the story to René felt more intimate than it would have otherwise. Although some of the ending is revealed at the beginning of the novel, I always needed to know what happened next. Plus I was absolutely rooting for the romance. If you’re looking for an enchanting novel that you can get absolutely lost in, I would absolutely recommend The Jewel Thief. Although I feel like it should come with a disclaimer that you’ll go down a deep internet rabbit hole regarding the royal gems of Europe afterward. *Disclaimer: I received a digital advance copy of this book for free from the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Claudia

    What a stunning book! Mobley, already an award-winning author of historical fiction for middle-grade readers, dazzles in this enormously ambitious tale for YA (and adult) readers: a story of daughterly devotion, court intrigue, the search for artistic integrity, and sizzling romance, all set during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King, in Paris. Juliette is the daughter of the King's crown jeweler, who has been charged with cutting an enormous - and dauntingly challenging - diamond in a way that What a stunning book! Mobley, already an award-winning author of historical fiction for middle-grade readers, dazzles in this enormously ambitious tale for YA (and adult) readers: a story of daughterly devotion, court intrigue, the search for artistic integrity, and sizzling romance, all set during the reign of Louis XIV, the Sun King, in Paris. Juliette is the daughter of the King's crown jeweler, who has been charged with cutting an enormous - and dauntingly challenging - diamond in a way that defies his skill. Anguished over her father's failure and the humiliation that follows, Juliette takes staggering risks to try to achieve what he thought impossible. The book opens with Juliette imprisoned and awaiting execution, where her fate will turn on the confession she is making to the court's appointed scribe - who also happens to be the man Juliette has loved, and lost. As I read, I was torn between wanting to savor my time spent in the world of 17th century Paris, rendered here in delicious evocative detail, and turning pages faster and faster to learn if Juliette can save her life - and regain her lover's heart in the process. Mobley's writing is beautiful and riveting from the first page to the last. THE JEWEL THIEF is a tour de force of meticulous historical research, ingenious plot twists, and heart-stopping love in so many different forms: love of a daughter for a father, of a woman for her lover, and of an artist for her work. This is a book I'll long remember.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Dana Al-Basha دانة الباشا

    What a cover!! What a cover!!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Natalie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. 2.5 stars The dual timelines were interesting (Juliette, in jail in the present, recounting the events that led to her imprisonment) and the transitions from present to past were smooth. However, I just could not get behind Juliette as a character. She withholds information and makes choices that put herself and others at risk, and I couldn’t get behind that, especially how the Jewish family was treated. Ugh I felt so bad for them! I hated Andre (and obviously he was a villain, but for whatever r 2.5 stars The dual timelines were interesting (Juliette, in jail in the present, recounting the events that led to her imprisonment) and the transitions from present to past were smooth. However, I just could not get behind Juliette as a character. She withholds information and makes choices that put herself and others at risk, and I couldn’t get behind that, especially how the Jewish family was treated. Ugh I felt so bad for them! I hated Andre (and obviously he was a villain, but for whatever reason Juliette decides to trust him even though she doesn’t like him which was another reason I didn’t care for her) and the father was weak and useless. The other problem for me was the romance. Since the story is largely told in flashbacks, they’re already in love and the reader is just supposed to go with it. I didn’t see a connection between the two of them at all and even though he’s furious with her for all of her lies in the beginning, he changes his mind pretty quickly and decides to help her escape her fate. He seemed to forgive her at the drop of a hat. And ugh, that random sex scene in the dirty jail cell did not need to be in there. Overall I liked the historical aspects and learning about the process of cutting and setting the diamonds was interesting, but the main character and the romance detracted for me. tw - antisemitism

  6. 5 out of 5

    Nicole N. (A Myriad of Books)

    I picked up an ARC of this book from the publisher’s booth while attending the North Texas Teen Book Festival in March 2020. Content warnings: anti-Semitism, attempted rape This was truly such a lovely and unique book. I adore historical fiction and the premise sounded too good to pass up. I was so happy to dive into 17th century France and to learn a bit more about the origins of the Hope Diamond. I found the writing and the story as a whole incredibly engaging, and while I though this would be an I picked up an ARC of this book from the publisher’s booth while attending the North Texas Teen Book Festival in March 2020. Content warnings: anti-Semitism, attempted rape This was truly such a lovely and unique book. I adore historical fiction and the premise sounded too good to pass up. I was so happy to dive into 17th century France and to learn a bit more about the origins of the Hope Diamond. I found the writing and the story as a whole incredibly engaging, and while I though this would be an epistolary novel, it’s not. Rather the main character, Juliette, tells her story to her former lover, René, as she was put into prison by the king, accused of crimes we aren’t too sure she committed. I really enjoyed the way the story flows smoothly back and forth from past to present. We really get an idea of what life was like for Juliette and her father, the king’s jeweler. King Loui XIV was known as the Sun King, and his vanity shines through in as much as he loves his diamonds and jewels. But like any king, he’s selfish and desires the world to revolve only around him. We see him bring a family low and to ruin with his impatience and lack of mercy. Juliette is definitely the shining star of this novel. While those around her struggled, she did everything within her power to bring glory to her family. I felt bad for her, though, and how her family slowly fell apart. But I’m glad she was able to see through the fog of her father’s depression. The whole story is gem-cutting and creating jewels during this time period is really fascinating too. I don’t think I’ve ever read a book about it or how in-depth, the mechanics and calculations that really go into creating something worthy for a selfish king. I wasn’t sure how I felt about the romance between Juliette and René, but it ended up being really sweet and wholesome. It’s definitely filled with “first love” emotions but that’s what makes it so good. However, I do wish we had gotten a little more of the world-building. Juliette’s family has the Kong’s patronage and it’s seen from the beginning they live a lavish lifestyle. Just as a personal preference, I wanted a bit more of that court life and the glittering luxurious-ness of it all.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Amanda (MetalPhantasmReads)

    *I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for a free and honest review. All thoughts are my own** This historical fiction is based around the famous Diamond and a jewel heist so I was really interested to check this book out. But sadly, this book feels like it should've come out in the 2000's instead of 2020. I have read so much YA in the last 3 years that are more entertaining, compelling and better written than this. Juliette is such an idiot who lies or withh *I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for a free and honest review. All thoughts are my own** This historical fiction is based around the famous Diamond and a jewel heist so I was really interested to check this book out. But sadly, this book feels like it should've come out in the 2000's instead of 2020. I have read so much YA in the last 3 years that are more entertaining, compelling and better written than this. Juliette is such an idiot who lies or withholds information for stupid and selfish reasons and that seriously puts people at risk. I never cared or could get behind the dumb things she did. Plus since she is telling her story, all the emotion or surprise of what happens in the past is lost in how she summarizes everything and heavily foreshadows what happens. That kind of storytelling isn't useful for me to make the story have any tension or let the reader guess what's going to happen. I recommend books like "An Affair of Poisons" or "The Gilded Wolves" for much better YA books set in Paris. This was a major fail for me. Review to come on the blog next week. *Thanks to the publisher for the review copy* I got approved for this on Edelweiss!! :) SO FREAKING EXCITED!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sue (BeautyBookCorner)

    I loved this book so much! The writing style, the history, and the high stakes drama all made for a really engaging read. RTC!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kat

    * Thank you Penguin Teen Canada for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review * ACTUAL: 4.25 stars This story begins with Juliet, who is imprisoned for stealing the Hope Diamond from King Louis XIV. She has only the night to recall the events leading up to the night to the scribe across the cell, Rene, the man she loves but lost. She's reeling from her father's failure but still plans to use this night to fight for her life, before her sentencing the next day. I really enjoy heists and roya * Thank you Penguin Teen Canada for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review * ACTUAL: 4.25 stars This story begins with Juliet, who is imprisoned for stealing the Hope Diamond from King Louis XIV. She has only the night to recall the events leading up to the night to the scribe across the cell, Rene, the man she loves but lost. She's reeling from her father's failure but still plans to use this night to fight for her life, before her sentencing the next day. I really enjoy heists and royalty themes so this one first interested me from the synopsis. One of the most unique aspects of the novel was the writing style. The story goes between present tense in her cell, and the past as she recounts the months leading up to the theft. In the beginning this was a bit confusing, but I did not mind it all as the story evolved. The last third was definitely the highest stakes, and I am so thrilled with how the story ended. I liked the characters, the historical elements, and the plot, and will be recommending this one to YA historical fiction fans.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Alyson Kent

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Beautifully written and engaging, I only had a problem suspending disbelief over the state Juliette was in during most of the novel (beaten, bloody, cracked ribs, most likely 2nd or 3rd degree burns to her right hand) in a room described as damp with piss and other things on the floor, and yet she’s still able to draw enough breath to tell her, very long, story (I was a little lenient considering her life was on the line) and engage in other, rather vigorous activities. Otherwise, it’s a fascina Beautifully written and engaging, I only had a problem suspending disbelief over the state Juliette was in during most of the novel (beaten, bloody, cracked ribs, most likely 2nd or 3rd degree burns to her right hand) in a room described as damp with piss and other things on the floor, and yet she’s still able to draw enough breath to tell her, very long, story (I was a little lenient considering her life was on the line) and engage in other, rather vigorous activities. Otherwise, it’s a fascinating work of historical fiction and I know some of our patrons will really enjoy it. Thank you, Edelweiss, for the eARC.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Kim

    "But you have confessed to conspiracy and theft against the crown, and that remains punishble by death." I am giving the Jewel thief a 3 out of 5 star rating. It's hard to know where to start. As I progressed through Juliet's story I began to enjoy the story more. At about 50% I had so much hate for Juliet that I must confess I almost DNF'd and that is one thing I do not EVER do. Juliet Pitau is a 16 year old girl living in the heart of France during the reign of King Louis XIV. She is the daught "But you have confessed to conspiracy and theft against the crown, and that remains punishble by death." I am giving the Jewel thief a 3 out of 5 star rating. It's hard to know where to start. As I progressed through Juliet's story I began to enjoy the story more. At about 50% I had so much hate for Juliet that I must confess I almost DNF'd and that is one thing I do not EVER do. Juliet Pitau is a 16 year old girl living in the heart of France during the reign of King Louis XIV. She is the daughter of the crown's most infamous jeweler and loved by many. Tragedy strikes young Juliet's family when her father is away. she takes matters into her own hand while her father is away. Upon return Monisseur Pitau discovers great loss upon his return and drinks himself into a stupor. Juliet steps up during these drunken stupors to revive her family name all for the sake of love. I've been going back and forth with the rating I wanted to give them. I feel like the love story redeemed some of the books lesser qualities. I really felt like Juliet cared a great deal for her father but at the same time became blinded by her love for him and love for Rene' the love interest in this book. It was hard for me to like her character given the fact that her father basically gave up on her and drank every night. Yet time and time again she went to bats for him. Also, dare I say not always in the best nor smartest of manners. Her blindness cost a lot of problems in this book. She ruined peoples lives but at the same time sort or redeemed herself. She was 16 in the book so maybe it's befitting. I still say she needed to gain a better backbone. Things were left unresolved in this book. I'm assuming that this is a standalone but I would have liked to know what happens to the Jewish families in this book. They played a huge role yet in the end were torn from their home because of a girls rash decision. " I ruined the very people I was trying to save. This time, though I would not make things worse by trying to make amends. This time, I would take the blame, and the punishment. I did enjoy the way the author told the tale itself. It is written as a plea from the Bastille. That was quite unique. In the end I just could not stand behind Juliet and her choices. she made others suffer in the name of love. Some of the plot points did not quite come together. I am very glad I continued to read till the very end. The last chapter was very well written. Just a quick heads up there are some graphic scenes as far as sexual content goes. I would call this more of an adult fiction rather than a YA.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Colby

    First of all, thank you to Penguin Teen for sending me an eARC of this! Set in 17th century France, Juliette is the daughter of the disgraced Crown Jeweller. Her father was tasked with cutting the Hope Diamond (the Violet), but when her father travels to Venice to learn the secrets of the great diamond cutters, he comes back empty-handed. The book is told from the end of the story where Juliette waits in a prison cell. She has been arrested on account of stealing the jewel, so much of the book we First of all, thank you to Penguin Teen for sending me an eARC of this! Set in 17th century France, Juliette is the daughter of the disgraced Crown Jeweller. Her father was tasked with cutting the Hope Diamond (the Violet), but when her father travels to Venice to learn the secrets of the great diamond cutters, he comes back empty-handed. The book is told from the end of the story where Juliette waits in a prison cell. She has been arrested on account of stealing the jewel, so much of the book we learn the 'why' of this story, and how they got there. At first, I sort of enjoyed the way the story was told, a bounce back and forth between the past and then to present where her ex-courter, Rene, writes down her harrowing tale. But then she started mentioning Rene in her retelling, and she would say 'you' in reference to him. At times, the author lost track of that, and Juliette would refer to Rene as 'Rene' or 'he', instead, so it got kind of frustrating. I think I would have preferred to be sucked into it fully rather than this constant back and forth between times. Overall, I was just a bit let down. This was a cool concept, and I was really excited to read this one, but I just didn't really enjoy it, much!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nicole Alycia

    3.5/5 rounded down It was a very interesting story about the carving of the Hope Diamond. I liked how the story was told, with the main character recounting what happened to be written down. I wasn’t the biggest fan of the main character though which was part of my problem. They do point out her flaws throughout the book however which was slightly redeeming but I always have some issues with super naive characters and that was Juliette in a nutshell. All in all I think this book is more for peopl 3.5/5 rounded down It was a very interesting story about the carving of the Hope Diamond. I liked how the story was told, with the main character recounting what happened to be written down. I wasn’t the biggest fan of the main character though which was part of my problem. They do point out her flaws throughout the book however which was slightly redeeming but I always have some issues with super naive characters and that was Juliette in a nutshell. All in all I think this book is more for people who enjoy books where the main character would do anything for love. It’s not really my kind of book which is another reason why I don’t think I loved this one.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Raisa Alexis

    cw: anti-semitism in 17th century france I received an ARC of this book at ALAMW but this doesn't impact my review. 17th century French jewel heist that wasn't very heist-y. Juliette Pitau has been arrested for her role in 'stealing' the Tavernier Violet. The story is her confession, as she talks about what really went down. Also, this book wasn't really romance-y, even though it says it's a romance. Juliette's confessing to Rene, a book binder, and the person she's fallen for. It's cool that we cw: anti-semitism in 17th century france I received an ARC of this book at ALAMW but this doesn't impact my review. 17th century French jewel heist that wasn't very heist-y. Juliette Pitau has been arrested for her role in 'stealing' the Tavernier Violet. The story is her confession, as she talks about what really went down. Also, this book wasn't really romance-y, even though it says it's a romance. Juliette's confessing to Rene, a book binder, and the person she's fallen for. It's cool that we're getting the story in reverse, but there just wasn't any chemistry between the two. Telling a story that already happened as opposed to when it's happening is interesting, but it downplays the tension and action, imo. It was an interesting tale set in 17th century France, but it doesn't stick out that prominently in my mind.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alexis (hookedtobooks)

    Thank you to @penguinteenca for sending me a copy of this book! - This book was super fun and stared out very captivating! Juliette’s father is the jeweller of King Louis the sun king and has been tasked with creating a jewel to make the sun king shine! Through a ton of twists and turns Juliette ends up arrested and maybe being sentenced to death, and the book fills in the holes to what happened! - I love that the book was told from the perspective of Juliette’s confession! I thought that this was d Thank you to @penguinteenca for sending me a copy of this book! - This book was super fun and stared out very captivating! Juliette’s father is the jeweller of King Louis the sun king and has been tasked with creating a jewel to make the sun king shine! Through a ton of twists and turns Juliette ends up arrested and maybe being sentenced to death, and the book fills in the holes to what happened! - I love that the book was told from the perspective of Juliette’s confession! I thought that this was different and unique. The action kept me fully entertained in the book and I kept getting so frustrated with the characters, which I think was the intention of the author! Juliette dad was super frustrating because Juliette is doing so much to help her dad but he is not helping her, but also he has experienced some trying things so you couldn’t be fully mad at her dad! If you’re looking for a fun historical fiction book set during the time of the sun king then I definitely recommend this book!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Monica (books_over_everything)

    **Disclaimer: I was given a free e-ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.** Title The Jewel Thief Author Jeannie Mobley Description from Amazon Her story begins . . . in Paris. The only daughter of the King’s crown jeweler, Juliette marvels at the large, deep-blue diamond Louis XIV has commanded her father to make shine like the sun. But Jean Pitau has never cut a diamond quite like this, and shaping it is a risky endeavor. As Jean spirals into depression, Juliette ta **Disclaimer: I was given a free e-ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review via NetGalley.** Title The Jewel Thief Author Jeannie Mobley Description from Amazon Her story begins . . . in Paris. The only daughter of the King’s crown jeweler, Juliette marvels at the large, deep-blue diamond Louis XIV has commanded her father to make shine like the sun. But Jean Pitau has never cut a diamond quite like this, and shaping it is a risky endeavor. As Jean spirals into depression, Juliette takes it upon herself to cut the stone, and with every misstep, brings her family closer to ruin. Her story resumes . . . in a cold, dark cell of the Bastille prison. Charged with stealing the King’s diamond, Juliette has but one chance to convince him that her motives were pure. If she fails, this night may very well be her last. Though, death wouldn’t be her worst fate. Because recording Juliette’s confession is René, a court-appointed scribe, and the man she loves. But René holds his own grudge against Juliette, and this is her one and only chance to win back his heart. Release Date May 26, 2020 Publisher Penguin Teen Initial Thoughts I was so excited when I saw this book on NetGalley, I added it to my TBR immediately. France, history, diamond cutting – what more could I want? Then, when Penguin Teen offered me the chance to review it early, I had a borderline panic attack. There were some amazing books that came out in May but this was by far my most anticipated. Some Things I Liked Mathematics represented in YA literature. Ok, ok, it wasn’t exactly math in any crazy way but the main characters discuss Descartes as well as the physics and calculations needed to correctly cut a diamond. I loved seeing representation for my favorite subject. France. I just love France so much and I was in love with the rich details and glittering court life described in this book. Furthermore, Louis XIV AKA the Sun King is my favorite French monarch. I actually had a fish named Louis XIV. He was a beta fish and he lived to be almost 4 years old so he was basically the Sun King of betas since they usually only live about 1 year. Narration from prison. I really liked that almost the entire story was told from the perspective of Juliette’s prison cell. This was a unique way to tell the story and inject reactions from the main character. Series Value While I would love to know more about Juliette, Rene, and all of the other characters we met in The Jewel Thief, this story feels complete. I loved the ending and while it was a bit open ended for more adventures, I was left very satisfied. However, I will say that I want to read more of what Jeannie Mobley writes / has written. I loved her style in this book. Final Thoughts I loved this book. Thank you so much to Penguin Teen for providing a copy. I knew I was going to like this book but I discovered so many more reasons to love it as I read. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Recommendations for Further Reading Madame Tussaud’s Apprentice by Kathleen Benner Duble – if you enjoyed the setting of France, the historic atmosphere, and the concepts of masters and their art, definitely check out this standalone novel. An Affair of Poisons by Addie Thorley – again, if you like books set in France, books rich with history, but, you want a sprinkle of a fantasy / magical element, try this standalone by Addie Thorley Rook by Shannon Cameron – if you liked the French setting and theme of thievery, try this standalone by Shannon Cameron. Although the setting is more dystopian France, the themes are very similar.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Raji

    Find this review and more on my blog at Worlds Unlike Our Own . A huge thank you to PenguinTeen Canada for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review! The Jewel Thief takes us back in time to 17th century France, to the court of the Sun King, Louis XIV, who has just acquired the diamond called the Tavernier Violet that is today known as the Hope Diamond. The Crown Jeweller, Jean Pitau, is entrusted with cutting this precious gem to make it shine, a herculean task, co Find this review and more on my blog at Worlds Unlike Our Own . A huge thank you to PenguinTeen Canada for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review! The Jewel Thief takes us back in time to 17th century France, to the court of the Sun King, Louis XIV, who has just acquired the diamond called the Tavernier Violet that is today known as the Hope Diamond. The Crown Jeweller, Jean Pitau, is entrusted with cutting this precious gem to make it shine, a herculean task, considering its odd shape. His daughter Juliette watches as the seemingly impossible demand the King has made sends her father into a deep depression and she resolves to do whatever it takes to get the job done. From her cell in the Bastille, Juliette narrates her story as she stands accused of stealing the diamond, and the court-appointed scribe, her lost love Rene, records the confession upon which her fate rests. 17th and 18th century France is among my favourite time periods for historical fiction, and while I’ve come across the history of the Hope Diamond briefly, it was interesting to see what might have happened behind the scenes of what is one of the most famous jewels in the world today. The art of gem-cutting, of creating jewels in the time period and the internal politics in the profession were all something entirely unknown to me and I found it quite fascinating, not to mention, I’m now quite curious how it is done in present day. And of course, the world-building was excellent – 17th century Paris was truly brought to life in this standalone novel and the setting of the story had a very authentic feel to it. The one thing I would have liked to see more of in this aspect was court life itself as I have always found stories of the famously glittering and luxurious French court to be very intriguing and it would have been nice to see it from Juliette’s point of view. Narrated from Juliette’s perspective, the story alternates between past and present in an exciting and moving narrative that depicts beautifully how she fought and refused to give up even as a diamond and a King’s selfish desires brought her family to ruin. However, despite her ultimately good intentions, she makes some very rash decisions, withholding crucial information several times placing herself and her family in more and more danger. I loved the narration style and it was very easy to get caught up in the story as the tension increased by the page. As I mentioned in one of my recent reviews, I really enjoy this type of story where the book begins with the climactic event and then steps back to narrate the events that lead up to it. The Jewel Thief was an engrossing novel that I read in one sitting. While this was largely fictional, it was nevertheless a thrilling read and I was very satisfied with how the story ended though the final chapters did feel a little rushed. It was fun to return to one of my favourite eras in history with this fast-paced narrative and I would definitely recommend this book for historical fiction fans.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Elisha Jachetti

    THE JEWEL THIEF by Jeannie Mobley is a YA Historical Fiction novel, set in Paris, France during the reign of the Sun King. Juliette is the daughter of the King’s crown jeweler, which seems like an illustrious position, but in truth is quite dangerous. Jean, Juliette’s father, realizes the risk of not meeting King Louis XIV’s expectations, when he’s commissioned to cut the Tavernier Violet. Due to its odd shape, the task of turning the diamond brilliant is almost impossible. The more Jean tries t THE JEWEL THIEF by Jeannie Mobley is a YA Historical Fiction novel, set in Paris, France during the reign of the Sun King. Juliette is the daughter of the King’s crown jeweler, which seems like an illustrious position, but in truth is quite dangerous. Jean, Juliette’s father, realizes the risk of not meeting King Louis XIV’s expectations, when he’s commissioned to cut the Tavernier Violet. Due to its odd shape, the task of turning the diamond brilliant is almost impossible. The more Jean tries to find a solution, the more depressed he becomes, to the point that Juliette must take over the work. Yet, with the best of intentions, Juliette’s actions land her in the Bastille, with the threat of execution the next day. What’s worse is that Rene, the man she loves, now feels betrayed by her. In order to convince him she’s the girl he thought she was, and to get pardoned by the King, Juliette must make a confession. However, it may be too little, too late on both accounts. I absolutely love this book. There’s romance, a quasi-heist, political intrigue, and royalty— what more could I possibly want? With that being said, the most compelling element of the story is the love between Juliette and Rene. There are so many swoon-worthy moments, which are dramatized by how the book is structured. By flipping back and forth in time, Juliette has to win Rene back, while simultaneously, the audience gets to see them fall for each other. This creates tension. Mobley also successfully shows us how their love transcends rank and does this in quite a clever way. My other favorite element of this book is the Benzacars. Isaac and his grandfather are such dynamic characters, and the injustice served to them breaks my heart. Their story, though fictional, is presumably an experience many can relate to, even today, which is part of the reason why I love historical fiction novels. They remind us of the mistakes we keep making as a society. The Benzacar plotline allows us to see some of the religious politics of the time, not just in France, but in other countries as well. To be thorough, I must mention that the stakes feel quite low throughout the novel. Of course, it is life or death for Juliette, but I know from the beginning she’ll make out just fine. This may be a product of Juliette’s demeanor or the fact that we as the audience don’t viscerally sense time slipping away for her. I also don’t believe that Juliette would be able to do all that she physically does with broken ribs. However, despite these minor points, this is a book I could read again and again. THE JEWEL THIEF is a fictional origin story of the Hope Diamond, but more than that, it is a tale of a girl who is willing to risk it all for the ones she loves. Anyone who is looking to get completely swept away by a story will enjoy this one. Review originally posted on YA Books Central: https://www.yabookscentral.com/yafict...

  19. 4 out of 5

    Elisa (The Overflowing Bookshelf)

    If you’re looking for a binge-worthy historical fiction book then look no further! Jeannie Mobley’s The Jewel Thief is a lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond. The romance and excitement all set in France’s high society is the book you need to read right now! In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to be known as the Hope Diamond from If you’re looking for a binge-worthy historical fiction book then look no further! Jeannie Mobley’s The Jewel Thief is a lush, slow-burn romance set in 17th century France, and centered around the broken history of the Hope Diamond. The romance and excitement all set in France’s high society is the book you need to read right now! In the depths of the Bastille, sixteen-year-old Juliet Pitau sits cold and filthy in her cell. Charged with stealing what has come to be known as the Hope Diamond from King Louis XIV, she has one final chance to convince the King that her motives were pure. If she fails, this night may be her last. Recording her confession is Rene, a scribe for the king and the man she loves. But Rene won't even look her way, let alone begin to forgive her for her betrayal of him. Before Juliet was imprisoned, she was the daughter of the finest gem cutter in all of Paris. The young King Louis XIV hand-selected Jean Pitau to be his crown jeweler, the only man who could make him shine like the sun. When Louis purchases the Tavernier Violet, a large, deep-blue diamond the likes of which the French court has never seen, Jean is tasked with turning it brilliant. But Juliet's father has never cut a diamond quite like this--and shaping it is risky business. While Jean spirals into depression, Juliet takes it upon herself to have the diamond cut for the King. But with every misstep, she brings her family closer to ruin, and closer to probable death at morning's light once Louis casts his sentence. This book hooks you in from the beginning and doesn’t let you go until the very end. The narration of the story (Juliette recounting the last two years to Rene) keeps the plot engaging and exciting. The world of gem cutting was fascinating to read about. Although most of the characters in the story were fictional, the way Mobley interweaves history and fiction together makes for a wonderful story. The historical aspects of this novel (the way Jews were treated in France, the politics of French courts, the way jewelers worked, etc.) was super interesting to read about and piqued my interest in a time period I really had no prior knowledge about. Aside from the plot, the character’s were fantastically flawed and each and every one of them wonderfully developed. Juliette’s ambition is both inspiring and frustrating to read about, which makes her, as a narrator, so much fun to read about. The way she is willing to risk everything to help her father succeed again and the later risk her own life to protect the ones she loves is heartbreaking and beautiful to see. Her struggles and her determination help propel the story and Mobley develops her into a fantastic protagonist. Overall, this book will make you smile, make you cry, and make you want to binge the entire novel in one sitting. Fans of historical fiction and YA literature will love this story and it’s the perfect addition to your summer reading list!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Amanda TheFunSizeReader

    Do you know the history of the Hope Diamond? How about the curse? *cue flute solo from Titanic* The Fun Size Reader Instagram | BookTube Channel No but really. I don’t know a lot about the hope diamond, but after reading this, I want to know more! The Jewel Thief is a story about Juliette, the daughter of a master jeweler who works at the command of King Louis of France in the 1600s. Juliette’s father is tasked with cutting the largest blue diamond that Europe has ever seen, but here’s the catch: he Do you know the history of the Hope Diamond? How about the curse? *cue flute solo from Titanic* The Fun Size Reader Instagram | BookTube Channel No but really. I don’t know a lot about the hope diamond, but after reading this, I want to know more! The Jewel Thief is a story about Juliette, the daughter of a master jeweler who works at the command of King Louis of France in the 1600s. Juliette’s father is tasked with cutting the largest blue diamond that Europe has ever seen, but here’s the catch: he says it can’t be done. Juliette is not willing to take that as an answer, and seeks to find another master cutter who can help her and her father. But the key is, in order to get the job done, she is going to have to steal the diamond. This book was a fun look into another part of history that I don’t know much about. Despite being an avid Titanic watcher in my youth, I had no idea this was about the Hope Diamond, aka the heart of the ocean. And now I want to learn so much more about it. I will say I was a little thrown with the style of this book. It is told in reverse, where Juliette is telling her story to her love, in jail, to exonerate herself in the eyes of the king. The style was a little off-putting at first. I kept trying to figure out what was story and what was “current” which was a tad confusing. After I had read it for a while, it was easier to follow, although I feel like I would have felt a lot more connection to the characters, love story, and suspense if it was told in the order it happened. Overall it was a fun read about a very cool historical subject matter.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Shelby

    3.5 stars *Thanks to Penguin Teen for providing me with an ARC THE JEWEL THIEF was a really interesting historical fiction novel. The story is told by Juliette, whose father became the Crown Jeweler and is given the assignment of cutting the Hope Diamond, a seemingly impossible task. I loved the way the story is told: Juliette recounts the events leading up to her current predicament, with present-day commentary every chapter, then jumping back into the past. This kept me intrigued in the story a 3.5 stars *Thanks to Penguin Teen for providing me with an ARC THE JEWEL THIEF was a really interesting historical fiction novel. The story is told by Juliette, whose father became the Crown Jeweler and is given the assignment of cutting the Hope Diamond, a seemingly impossible task. I loved the way the story is told: Juliette recounts the events leading up to her current predicament, with present-day commentary every chapter, then jumping back into the past. This kept me intrigued in the story and gave an element of suspense, despite the fact that we already knew what her current situation was. We also got a fair bit of political intrigue, what with the king, the guilds, and the stressors of working for a king like Louis XIV, which was interesting. In historical fictions, I always like being immersed in the world. As this story takes place in 17th century France, I was expecting more of an atmospheric read and hoping to be more immersed in the French culture and setting more than I was. The story focused mainly on the heist that occurs rather than the setting, which I was disappointed in. I also thought the side characters weren't completely developed, though the flashback element of the story could have caused this. The entire plot around the Hope Diamond and the cutting of it was completely unique and so interesting to read about, and I loved it! This is a must read for fans of 17th century France and the mysterious past surrounding the Hope Diamond.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Vanessa

    **Thank you to Penguin and Netgalley for letting me review this arc! This was an exciting historical fiction about the cutting and theft of the French Blue diamond. It follows the daughter of the King's disgraced jeweler as she masterminds a plot to save her father's reputation and cut the King's most precious diamond to bring him, France, and her family glory. This is a part of history that I had never explored before, and this book made it a fun and gripping experience, with the story moving fr **Thank you to Penguin and Netgalley for letting me review this arc! This was an exciting historical fiction about the cutting and theft of the French Blue diamond. It follows the daughter of the King's disgraced jeweler as she masterminds a plot to save her father's reputation and cut the King's most precious diamond to bring him, France, and her family glory. This is a part of history that I had never explored before, and this book made it a fun and gripping experience, with the story moving from one triumph of Juliette's genius, to a new danger she lands herself in, to the next stroke of genius to get her out of it. Juliette's character is complex and realistic, with a whole range of human assets and flaws. She is cunning, brash, brave, ambitious, sometimes manipulative and other times genuine. I would have loved to see her love story be a little more developed, but I appreciated how much focus was on her journey with the gem, and her ambitions and follies while executing her plan. The history of the French Blue is largely unknown, which gave this book room to play with history, and the author built a beautiful cast of characters and a lively story out of that mystery. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys historical fiction.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lauren Hicks

    I received this as an ARC from Net Galley and the following are my opinions of the book. I wanted to love this book... I really did! I have always loved stories that are based on french history, and this one sounded like it was going to be a huge hit. However, it fell a little flat for me. It was so sad and the characters were so frustrating (apart from Rene and the Benzacar family). I think I would have enjoyed it more if there was a bit more court intrigue with a build up of romance between he I received this as an ARC from Net Galley and the following are my opinions of the book. I wanted to love this book... I really did! I have always loved stories that are based on french history, and this one sounded like it was going to be a huge hit. However, it fell a little flat for me. It was so sad and the characters were so frustrating (apart from Rene and the Benzacar family). I think I would have enjoyed it more if there was a bit more court intrigue with a build up of romance between her and Rene and less moments in a workshop; it just got to be a bit monotonous. With that being said, I did think the author was clever in telling the story in dual times (one in the present while in a jail cell and the other in the past leading up to it). Even though it was a bit of a flop for me, it has great potential, and I predict there will be a good number of people who will enjoy it!

  24. 5 out of 5

    John Clark

    A fresh and intriguing plot structure. Juliette is the daughter of the French king's jeweler. When this tale begins, she's in chains, suffering extreme pain from broken ribs and a badly burned hand, while being berated by the king because he believes she stole the blue diamond her father was to cut into a stone that would cement King Louis XIV's place in history. From there, you are taken to the cell where she is to confess to Rene, the handsome scribe she loves, but feels no hope of ever being A fresh and intriguing plot structure. Juliette is the daughter of the French king's jeweler. When this tale begins, she's in chains, suffering extreme pain from broken ribs and a badly burned hand, while being berated by the king because he believes she stole the blue diamond her father was to cut into a stone that would cement King Louis XIV's place in history. From there, you are taken to the cell where she is to confess to Rene, the handsome scribe she loves, but feels no hope of ever being anything more than a criminal in his eyes. Each chapter takes you deeper into what led her from being a gem cutter's daughter to a prisoner facing execution. The intricate plot, revealed through her confession, written down by Rene, involves a secret way of cutting diamonds believed lost, racial prejudice, backstabbing, intrigue by the bucketful and Juliette's desperate efforts not only to save her father and redeem his reputation, but save her own life. The ending is a dandy one.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    I adored this. The narrative style was so unique. There's a note from the editor at the front of the ARC that compares the story to Ever After (my favorite movie), and while it's not at all a Cinderella retelling, I can absolutely see the parallels in the romance, in the ways Juliette was trying to do the right thing, in the family problems, in the way the lies just kind of spiraled out of control. It was a pretty remarkable story. I will put a MAJOR content warning for anti-Semitism, though. Jew I adored this. The narrative style was so unique. There's a note from the editor at the front of the ARC that compares the story to Ever After (my favorite movie), and while it's not at all a Cinderella retelling, I can absolutely see the parallels in the romance, in the ways Juliette was trying to do the right thing, in the family problems, in the way the lies just kind of spiraled out of control. It was a pretty remarkable story. I will put a MAJOR content warning for anti-Semitism, though. Jewish people weren't legally allowed to even be in Paris and were outlawed from a number of European countries. So there's a lot of anti-Jewish sentiment in the book. Juliette unlearns a lot of her feelings, but not everyone around her does, especially as it's literally the law to be anti-Semitic. So, if you're a Jewish reader, I would go in with that awareness.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Megan Mann

    I thought this was really great. I thought the pacing was great, the mystery of it all was amazing. You wanted to see what would happen next, so it kept you glued to the page. I really enjoyed that. I also enjoyed that while this was historical fiction, the history was in the world and the fiction heavily in the story. I really enjoyed that. It was a great story about the mystery Tavernier Violet which was cut into the Blue of the Crown, which was stolen during the revolution and then turned into I thought this was really great. I thought the pacing was great, the mystery of it all was amazing. You wanted to see what would happen next, so it kept you glued to the page. I really enjoyed that. I also enjoyed that while this was historical fiction, the history was in the world and the fiction heavily in the story. I really enjoyed that. It was a great story about the mystery Tavernier Violet which was cut into the Blue of the Crown, which was stolen during the revolution and then turned into the Hope Diamond. I just think it’s amazing history. And a great story of ambition, love, and loss.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Kibby

    DNF @ 65%. I'll get a review up to explain my DNF at some point, but it was half me and half the book to blame for the DNF. If you like historical fictions of this era for the court intrigue this is not the book for you.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Hira Chaudhary

    Juliette is on trial for treason and she has one night to prove that she was only trying to do what the king asked of her father. To create the most beautiful and largest diamond in his collection, to make it shine like the sun and bring glory to the king. But Juliette made some mistakes along the way, told a few lies, and now her family is in hiding and she's been caught, forced to reveal to the man she loves everything she did in an attempt to exonerate herself. The setup of this story is inter Juliette is on trial for treason and she has one night to prove that she was only trying to do what the king asked of her father. To create the most beautiful and largest diamond in his collection, to make it shine like the sun and bring glory to the king. But Juliette made some mistakes along the way, told a few lies, and now her family is in hiding and she's been caught, forced to reveal to the man she loves everything she did in an attempt to exonerate herself. The setup of this story is interesting, because it drops you right in the middle of things, as Juliette has been caught and is now explaining everything that led up to her capture and the reasons for it. I really loved Juliette and René, and everything about their history together and how she won him back over. I love a good historical fiction story, and this one was just amazing and I loved every moment of it. Juliette was a very ambitious, brave, and determined protagonist who never gave up, who stood up for the people she loved, and who fell in love amidst the insanity that was her life. CW: attempted sexual assault, antisemitism, death of family members

  29. 5 out of 5

    A.R. Hellbender

    This is such a gripping story and a very quick read. Every time it seems like the situation can't get any worse, it does. It also appeared to be very well-researched, with a lot of detail about the time period, how Jewish people were treated, and about how diamond cutting works.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Erin Arkin

    Full review to come.

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