Friday, April 19, 2013

Q Is For...Queen's Thief

I was a teensy bit surprised Susan didn't beg to switch places with me so she could write about Queen's Thief herself. I shall attempt to do it justice, but she is the true expert, as you can see in her posts here and here.  I am merely a Eugenides groupie. If you've only read The Thief, you will be completely blown away by the man that boy becomes.

But I can't tell you about it. Queen's Thief fans are incredibly wary of giving away plot points of their beloved novels. Here's why:

...The Queen's Thief is very easy to spoil. These are actually character-centred rather than plot-centred novels, but they're also the kind of novels where learning certain things about the characters reconfigures the story you thought you were reading, and revisiting it once you have that knowledge will always be very different from reading it for the first time. Ana@littlethingsmeanalot 

How do I write a post persuading you to read the books without talking about them at all? Unlike me, Megan Whalen Turner has mastered the art of Withholding. (Obviously, this is not without controversy. Many people think Not Withholding is an Iron Clad Rule. I disagree. As Dalai Lama XIV said, "Know the rules well, so you can break them effectively.") It's hard to withhold when writing in first person, because theoretically, we should know everything the character is thinking about. I can't even tell you how MWT does it. Ask Susan. She knows.

I read The Thief years and years before I read the rest of the series. To me, it was just an enjoyable little story, quickly read, quickly forgotten. Some people love the parts about the gods, but I'm not one of them. It's kind of like the singing in The Lord Of The Rings. Just get on with the story already! Besides, it seemed like such a stand-alone book that I didn't check to see if there were any sequels.

There most definitely are. And after Susan's glowing reviews, I decided to give them a try. The rest of the books are fantastic. Even though The Thief won a Newberry Award, it is the weakest of the books, by far. Did I mention that I'm a Eugenides groupie? How I love that man.

In spite of his being spoiled, petulant and histrionic, he captures my heart. He's the kind of hero that makes any rule-breaking by the author acceptable. And I couldn't find one quote from the books I could share that would help you understand him that didn't spoil the story in some way.

"In the midst of an adventure that turns into political intrigue, which gets wrapped around questions of faith and loyalty, this series contains a love story, and a story of redemption and forgiveness. I can think of no other values and struggles more important for younger readers to start wrestling with, and none in which I need more instruction and illumination myself. It’s all a little humbling, is what I’m trying to say." Charlotte Boulay  
The Queen's Thief Series

1. The Thief
2. The Queen of Attolia
3. The King of Attolia
4. A Conspiracy of Kings
5. Yes. There will be more. 
Hurry Megan. Hurry!


  1. Ah, Melanie, you make my little fangirl heart sing :)

    Should I mention that I got to meet MWT in person, and she is just as amazing and clever as you knew she had to be to write Eugenides?

    So, yes, please, dear readers, let me proselytize w. Melanie - read the series IN ORDER. Don't worry that the first is MG - by the third book you will be blown away.

    You obviously know I think this is a great post!

  2. Thanks Susan! And thanks for introducing me to Eugenides after he was all grown up. You are awesome.

  3. Okay, I know I really need to read this series. The Thief is on my kindle waiting for me. :)

    I'm really curious now because I'm not a fan of withholding, but maybe I've never seen it done right.

  4. This series is complete news to me! But I find myself intrigued. Thanks for sharing this info :)

  5. I think the series is burned into my memory now: I'll find it and read it, I promise. I keep meaning to, but I keep forgetting. It won't happen this time. You guys got me hooked. Thanks Melanie (and Susan!)


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