The King of Attolia

This is the third novel in Megan Whalen Turner’s The Queen’s Thief series so if you haven’t read the first two (The Thief and The Queen of Attolia) but you plan to then stop reading now to avoid spoilers! If you have read the first books but not the third, these are the reasons why you should continue the series:

The second novel ends with Gen, the thief of Eddis, becoming king of Attolia and the third novel is all about his new life and all the complicated situation he’s put himself in. Unlike many men, Gen never wanted to be king of Attolia, all he wanted was to be with the queen. Being king was something he had to accept if he wanted to marry the queen and now Gen needs to learn to live his new life in a new country surrounded by people who hate him. The Attolians doesn’t accept him, the Captain of the Guard is a constant thorn in his side and his attendants do everything to make his life hell. Political controversies brew in the Attolian capital while Gen drags a random soldier from the royal guard into the political craziness. But it’s not a random soldier and Gen is not doing it for his own amusement. As always, the former Thief of Eddis has a secret agenda with everything he does.

It took me over three months to read this book but that is because a number of reasons, one of which is not, however, that I didn’t like the novel. It’s the opposite, actually. I really enjoy this series and this might well have been the best of the three novels. As always, Whalen Turner is an excellent writer and Gen is just as perfect as always. He is a great main character, he can make you laugh, he can make you angry and he always makes you question how it is that he seems to know everything about everyone. Most importantly, he grows very much in every book and it’s really nice to see him evolve throughout the story. His tentative and sweet love story with the queen is also lovely, mostly because it’s important for him but it’s not mentioned very much. There are no love-dovey scenes between them because the book, the entire series, isn’t about their relationship. It’s about them as people, about their country and about their neighbouring countries. The love story is subdued and it makes it even better and even sweeter.

In this novel we meet a new character in Costis, the guard Gen promotes for seemingly no reason. At first Costis, like most people, dislikes Gen but the more he’s around the new king the more he starts to respect the former Thief of Eddis. Costis brings a new and interesting perspective to the story and with him comes the possibility to see Attolia in a new and different light. We also get to see Gen from a new perspective and Costis is, in my opinion, a great addition to the novel. He has his own side story but the main focus stays on Gen and Attolia’s monarchy.

What I like the most about this series is the fact that nothing is ever as it seems and Gen is so good at tricking people in his surroundings, however, he manages to trick the reader as well. He keeps surprising me and I can’t wait to see what kind of trouble he gets into next and how he’s going to try and get out of it. Whalen Turner's story about the Thief of Eddis is certainly one of the best fantasy novels out there and you should definitely give it a chance!