Friday, 17 August 2018

Book Review: The Honourable Thief (Historical / Contemporary Fiction)


Title: The Honourable Thief
Author: Meaghan Wilson Anastasios
Publisher: Pan Macmillan 
Publication Date: 31st July 2018
RRP: $29.99
Pages: 448
Format read: Paperback
Source: courtesy of publisher

'Achilles? Because...?'
'Obsession of mine. Half man, half god - and his own worst enemy.
My kind of man.' He laughed.

Istanbul, Turkey 1955

Benedict Hitchens, once a world-renowned archaeologist, is now a discredited - but still rather charming - shell of his former self.

Once full of optimism and adventure, his determination to prove that Achilles was a real historical figure led him to his greatest love, Karina, on the island of Crete and to his greatest downfall, following the disappearance of an enigmatic stranger, Eris.

He has one last chance to restore his reputation, solve the mystery of Eris and prove his Achilles theory. But it is full of risk, and possibly fatal consequences...

In her breakout novel, Meaghan Wilson Anastasios weaves an action-packed tale of honour, passion, heroes and thieves across an epic backdrop of history.

Move over Indiana Jones.

Dr Benedict Hitchens renowned archaeologist’s life ambition is to find the final resting place of Achilles and prove his theory that Achilles was a real person.
Ben is tall, blond with rakish good looks. Hearts will be broken on his journey.

I dare you not to fall for this broken ant-hero! I know I did.

Wherever Ben goes trouble soon follows and at times even his credibility starts to be questioned leaving his career in tatters. Ben is forever searching for the next big discovery. He makes some bad decisions and runs with his heart rather than his head.

The story moves around from 1955 back to 1938, pre war Greece with the threat of war looming over the quiet Greek island, with flashback of the years between. This style of narration may be off putting to some although as the story progresses the date changes become easier to adapt to.

This moderately paced adventure drama lends itself to both the Historical Fiction genre with the inclusion of the effects of war and the German invasion on the small Greek island, with Ben joining the Resistance Movement, and the tumultuous history between Turkey and Greece and Contemporary Fiction genre as Anastasios describes the people, their way of life and the vivid village street celebrations and feasts. Don’t pass this up just because you don’t read historical fiction.

I would love to see this on the big screen it has all the elements of a Hollywood hit.

The Honourable Thief is an epic adventure of love and loss, greed and cunning, obsession and danger.

The story although fictional was inspired by real events.

An interesting author interview with Meaghan Wilson Anastasios, where she explains the inspiration behind the book, can be found on Theresasmithwrites. Well worth a read!

My rating 4.5/5 🌟🌟🌟🌟☆

Content: occasional coarse language
                 minimal sex scenes
                 allusion to paedophilia
                 minimal violence

 Meaghan Wilson Anastasios spent her formative years in Melbourne before travelling and working as an archaeologist in the Mediterranean and Middle East. She holds a PhD in art history and cultural economics, has been a lecturer at the University of Melbourne and was a fine art auctioneer. Meaghan now uses her expertise to write and research for film and TV. She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband and their two children. The Water Diviner was her first novel, which she co-wrote with her husband Andrew. The Honourable Thief is her first solo novel. 

Connect with the author at the following sites:



  1. Thanks for the interview link! Great review. Between this and the interview, I am keen to read the novel as soon as I can.

    1. My pleasure Theresa. I loved the story, Ben frustrated me no end but I still adored him. Hope you love it too.

  2. This sounds like an interesting and unique story. Great review.

    1. I loved it! Ben was made so many bad decisions but he was so endearing.

  3. I love the stories set on the backdrop of a historical event. It is riveting and at the same time,exciting too. Nice review.

    1. I love Historical Fiction but I am no means a history buff.

  4. This sound like a great way to wrap up summer reads.

  5. I am woefully lacking in my Greek mythology - thanx for the review

  6. I enjoy a good anti-hero! Great review.

    1. So do I and It's so good to come across one that's written so well.

  7. Reminded me a bit of Indiana Jones with people disbelieving the archaeologist. Great review.

    1. Even the descriptions of the markets reminded me of the Indian Jones movie but Ben wasn't all good guy.

  8. This sounds like a great read!

  9. What a fantastic setting!! :O This sounds like one that would really grip me, I love the premise and Turkey/Greece is just the perfect backdrop.

  10. Oooh! I really like that cover!!