The Queen of Attolia
By Megan Whalen Turner
I read The Thief, the first book in Whalen Turner’s series, back in March of this year. I liked it but wasn’t blown away at the start. The more I thought of it though, the more I liked it which was what make me want to read The Queen of Attolia.
Eugenides, the Queen of Eddis’s royal thief, is caught once more, this time by the queen of Attolia. Captured sneaking out of her castle, he’s thrown in prison, and as punishment, she cuts off his hand and returns him back to his queen. Thrown into a depressive state over the loss of his hand, and essentially his livelihood, he hides from everyone and everything. When he finally manages to pull himself out of his stupor, he finds his country at war with Attolia, and several other neighboring countries threatening war, and he feels he must finds a way to bring peace.
Megan Whalen Turner is very good at weaving an intricate tale that allows you get lulled into a story only to be taken aback by a small confession from a character. Yes, it was probably something I should have seen coming, but I was content to ride this one out waiting patiently to see how it would end, which is very odd for me. To be honest, there’s not a lot of action in this book even with the wars going on. There’s a lot of strategy talk though but there’s something interesting about it that I when I got to the end I wanted to pick up The King of Attolia right away. While it may not be a huge cliff hanger at the end, it’s enough that you want to know how things will be working out.
What I really enjoy about these books are the stories within the story. Characters tell tales, mostly about their gods and goddesses, but I find these fables so wonderful. It provides great background for some of the actions of the main characters and you do see the stories mirroring each other in some places. Whalen Turner brings a nice balance to the religious aspect and while it isn’t overt, it’s interesting to see how each character deals with their beliefs. I don’t usually care for religion in my fiction but it’s subtle and so well blended that it feels more a part of the story rather than an add on.
I’m reading The King of Attolia and will be hoping that my library has A Conspiracy of Kings, the fourth book in the series.