The Readymade Thief by Augustus Rose

The Readymade Thief

Augustus Rose

The Readymade Thief heralds the arrival of an astoundingly imaginative and propulsive new voice in fiction for fans of Marisha Pessl and Ernest Cline.

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“A debut novel that’s unexpected, uncategorizable, unputdownable.” –Robin Sloan, New York Times bestselling author of Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore

Lee Cuddy is seventeen years old and on the run.
Betrayed by her family after taking the fall for a friend, Lee finds refuge in a cooperative of runaways holed up in an abandoned building they call the Crystal Castle. But the façade of the Castle conceals a far more sinister agenda, one hatched by a society of fanatical men set on decoding a series of powerful secrets hidden in plain sight. And they believe Lee holds the key to it all.
Aided by Tomi, a young hacker and artist with whom she has struck a wary alliance, Lee escapes into the unmapped corners of the city—empty aquariums, deserted motels, patrolled museums, and even the homes of vacationing families. But the deeper she goes underground, the more tightly she finds herself bound in the strange web she’s trying to elude. Desperate and out of options, Lee steps from the shadows to face who is after her—and why.
A novel of puzzles, conspiracies, secret societies, urban exploration, art history, and a singular, indomitable heroine, The Readymade Thief heralds the arrival of a spellbinding and original new talent in fiction.

Advance Galley Reviews

Augustus Rose is an incredible author with a distinct style. His writing is quite dense but worth reading through. I was repeatedly challenged while reading. He mixes in multiple theories and a vast knowledge of art history about Marcel Duchamp. At times the plot is hard to follow and you don't know how the information fits into the context of the book. Even after finishing the book I am still trying to fit pieces together. Some of these pieces caused it to be stretched out further than it needed to be. I really enjoyed the book. I look forward to another Augustus Rose book, but hopefully next time it won't be so dense.

This is the kind of book that catches your attention from the very first line. The intriguing plot is so dense of content (from avant-gard to the deep web and the string theory) that I kept thinking that this would never be a good combination. I was so very whong :). And I'm glad for it, it's been a while since a book suprised me so much. The epilogue is fantastic, I don't know what else to say... I adored it and Augustus Rose is definitely a name I'll be searching for on bookstores,

This was a great fast paced story. If I could have, it would have been read in one go. I didn't want to put it down. I was particularly enchanted by the story because I was familiar with and had seen works by the artist mentioned in the story. This story is an inner connected web of lies and deceit that keep the story going until the very end. I especially liked Lee, the main character. She had to find her own way and personal truth in this story. I hope to read more stories by this author in the future.

A mysterious novel that is the darkest thing I have read in a while. While I knew from the synopsis that this wasn't going to be something like a light and fluffy contemporary, it still took me by surprise. Some of these dark aspects I did enjoy, others may have been a bit too much. Despite the fact that the topics throughout this book were unique and satisfying, the flow of everything wasn't the best. The ideas were spectacular and I enjoyed the aspect of decoding, although sometimes it was a little hard to follow. The one really amazing thing about this novel was that I refused to put it down because I was so invested in the plot. Rose has created a story unlike anything else and managed to take me into this dark and mysterious novel and never let go. So overall, it was a pretty good book.

A strange mixed up story of a smart young girl, but naïve and vulnerable drawn into intrigue about coded art, drugs which led into abusive relationships and situations. Crazy puzzles, twists and turns and Lee needy for attention and acceptance is betrayed by eccentric and sick people trying to decode an elusive message left by Duschamp. Hard to keep up with and understand the eclectic references, but the ending was sad but satisfying.

This story was really dark and almost a little disturbing. It does remind me a bit of The Da Vinci Code or a darker version of Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore, with the theme of finding hidden meaning in art, literature, etc. I really like books with that kind of plotline. I did enjoy this story, but I'm not entirely sure I understand it. All of the references to Duchamp's art were really confusing, and I found myself having to re-read sections of this book to understand what was going on. All in all, I liked this story, I mostly liked how it ended, and I would definitely recommend giving it a shot. Just be aware that this is not a light, fluffy read - it requires your full attention to really understand the story, and readers should be prepared for quite a bit of darkness and some violence. Overall though, definitely a really interesting, unique story.

Overall a good book. I had to take a break at times because the storyline didn't really flow for me. It's hard to imagine all of that bad luck for one poor girl, but I'm glad at how it ended. Thanks for my chance to preview this novel First to Read!


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