The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke:
I had read this book when I fourth grader and I fell in love with it. I had forgotten the name over the years but I never forgot the storyline. It tortured my soul and sent my heart into turmoil. Okay it didn't, but it did bother quite a bit. So, I sat down one night and Googled children's books. I had to trial and error, but I did it. I found the book. This wonderful, wonderful book and I am so happy. I got a FIRST edition of it in the mail today. Well, I think it's a first edition. That's what Amazon told me anyway. Either way, I'm happy about it.
What's that I'm sensing? Am I sensing my dear reader's begging for more? Do you want to hear more? Maybe, if you're good I'll tell you more.
Ahhhhhhhhhhh, who am I kidding?! You're ALWAYS good. So here you go:
"Welcome to the magical underworld of Venice, Italy, where hidden canals and crumbling rooftops shelter runaways and children with incredible secrets...
Prosper and Bo are orphans on the run from their cruel aunt and uncle. The brothers decide to hide out in Venice, where they meet a mysterious thirteen-year-old boy who calls himself the "Thief Lord." Brilliant and charismatic, the Thief Lord leads a ring of street children who dabble in petty crimes. Prosper and Bo delight in being part of this colorful new family. But the Thief Lord has secrets of his own. And soon the boys are thrust into circumstances that will lead them. and readers, to a fantastic, spellbinding conclusion. "
-- The Inside Flap of the Book.