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The Queen of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner

The Queen of Attolia (2000)

by Megan Whalen Turner

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Queen's Thief (2)

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1,383765,509 (4.23)1 / 163

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Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
Actual rating: 3.5 stars. Now that I'm more familiar with the setting and characters, from [b:The Thief|448873|The Thief (The Queen's Thief, #1)|Megan Whalen Turner|https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1388265525s/448873.jpg|1069505], I had a much better time easing myself into the story here. And there's certainly a lot of texture to it.

Turner's writing is so interesting in that--well, I don't feel like this book had a plot, per se. But there are a lot of cool twists and turns. It seems like Turner's style is to chuck foreshadowing aside completely and just keep surprising you with new turns. But it's very cleverly done, and quite enjoyable.

I also thought Turner used the omniscient perspective to great effect. Felt like I got to know all the characters better--while at the same time enhancing that "what the heck is going on?" vibe I sometimes get because Turner writes so many twists.

The romance here came out of nowhere, and I thought I wasn't going to like it. Yet, strangely, by the end, I did.

I'm finally starting to see, just a little bit, why people love these books so much. ( )
  elephantine | Nov 27, 2015 |
I had decided to pick this series up because I had dipped briefly into the sequel, "The King of Attolia" and found it intriguing. The first book, "The Thief", had much to recommend it, with its invented Greek mythology, its Alexandrian science (these ancient Greeks have primitive guns), its unreliable narrator, and its rather Roman architecture. This one, while still innovative in its way, is contrived, with a grim tale leavened with unsuitable humour, some bizarre plot holes, and no real explanation of the gods' behavior. I'm still hanging in there for the third one, since that is what got me interested in the series in the first place. ( )
  themulhern | Aug 18, 2015 |
I liked The Queen of Attolia, it turned out to be a great book about loyalty and had many political aspects. The queen of Attolia especially went from dislike to hatred to mild admiration all in one book, although admiring might be too strong of a word just yet.

I liked seeing elements of high fantasy play about in this book that weren’t as pronounced in the first book. It got a bit boring in the middle where it was a lot more setup and we’re just waiting to get on with the main twists.

Learning more about Attolia’s history as well as Eddis was really amazing, and showed their maturity at relatively young ages. One of the things that threw me off was the out of nowhere love for Gen had for Attolia (if someone can pinpoint when exactly he fell in love with her, I might’ve missed it somehow).

Also, the book has some bargains set that really turned the book around for me. It was basically like watching a historical TV show unfolds all in one episode. And I found that a lot of the dinners could’ve been skipped in the middle but I see Turner was trying to show Gen’s desperation after basically losing his life’s meaning.

Beginning of the book: 4 stars, middle: 2 stars, and end: 4 stars. ( )
  bubblyair | Jun 8, 2015 |
The Queen of Attolia is the sequel to The Thief. While they are very different books, you probably should read The Thief first. The Queen of Attolia jumps into action immediately, and you’ll likely need the background information that The Thief provides.

Whereas The Thief was a more limited story with a first person narration, The Queen of Attolia is a much broader story with a third person omniscient viewpoint that helps it show the relationships and intrigue between three warring kingdoms.

Sounis, Attolia, and Eddis are three neighboring kingdoms, all threatened with invasion from the powerful Medes. The countries must unite to stand against the Medes’ powerful empire, but which kingdom will rule the others? Who’s independence will be sacrificed? Eddis, the small mountain kingdom, has one of the most precarious positions of all, but Eddis is determined to maintain her freedom.

Much of the book revolves around the battle of wills of the queen of Eddis and the queen of Attolia. It would be easy to fall into the Good Queen vs. the Bad Queen trap, especially as the country of Eddis is the one belonging to the protagonists. However, the situation’s more complex than that, and Attolia is never presented as one dimensional or evil. She’s simply acting as she has to in order to maintain power and do the best for her country, even if it involves taking brutal steps.

“She thought of the hardness and the coldness she had cultivated over those years and wondered if they were the mask she wore or if the mask had become her self. If the longing inside her for kindness, for warmth, for compassion, was the last seed of hope for her, she didn’t know how to nurture it or if it could live.”

Compared to Attolia, Eddis has an easy time of it. She was instantly accepted as queen and her court adores her. She has people around her that she can trust. She can afford to be nice where Attolia can’t.

The characterization is splendid. Eugenides, Eddis, and Attolia are at the heart of the novel and all fascinating characters. If you haven’t guessed, Attolia’s the one who I find most interesting.

While Queen of Attolia is marketed as young adult, it almost has more in common with the second world fantasy novels aimed at adults. Political intrigue is not a common feature of the YA genera. However, this makes Queen of Attolia a breath of fresh air. It doesn’t fit into preconceived genre tropes and is allowed to be original and different.

My one qualm is that I was a bit dubious with how the romance worked. I was alright with it in the end, but I was giving it sideways glances the entire time.

I’d recommend The Queen of Attolia to fans of well written second world fantasy.

Originally posted on The Illustrated Page. ( )
1 vote pwaites | May 3, 2015 |
A re-read, since I was distracted last time, and in preparation for the fourth book's release.

This is a very well-crafted book and I am glad to have re-read it, although I continue to have a bit of difficulty with the central relationship of the story. But I'm very eager to re-read KING OF ATTOLIA next!
  devafagan | Jan 2, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 76 (next | show all)
Fantasy succeeds to the extent that it creates a deep, totalizing world, one that invites us to suspend disbelief. For the most part, Megan Whalen Turner succeeds in ''The Queen of Attolia,'' the sequel to her Newbery Honor book, ''The Thief.'' ... ''The Queen of Attolia'' is a book to turn children into readers -- bound, one hopes, for richer fare.

» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Megan Whalen Turnerprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Wyatt, DavidIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Susan Hirschman
First words
He was asleep, but woke at the sound of the key turning in the lock.
"Nahuseresh, if there is one thing a woman understands, it is the nature of gifts. They are bribes when threats do not avail."
"Steal peace, Eugenides. Steal me some time."
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Wikipedia in English (1)

Book description
Someone slid a tray of food through the slot in the bottom of the cell door. "I heard she was going to hang you but she changed her mind." said the keeper. "Don't worry, lad, she never changes it for the better."

Rotting in an Attolian prison, the Thief awaits his fate. For Eugenides has taunted the Queen of Attolia one time too many, and now he must pay.

Has the Thief's chaotic reign been cut short, or is there one more thing Eugenides can steal - this time for himself?
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060841826, Paperback)

In the firelit torture chamber the executioner's sword descends--and the Eugenides--the Thief of Eddis--no longer has his clever right hand. The Queen of Attolia sits calmly and watches the dreadful amputation behind her carefully cultivated mask of coldness, but later agonizes over what she has done to him. At the same time, she rages at herself for not hanging her captured prisoner outright.

Readers who first met Eugenides as the rascally teenager Gen in the Newbery Honor-winning The Thief will find that in this sequel he deepens through suffering and loss, but keeps the same witty talent for elaborate, crafty schemes of espionage and theft. Caught between two rival queens in a landscape based on that which surrounds the Mediterranean Sea, Eugenides is loyal to Eddis as her Queen's Thief, but in love (despite himself) with the beautiful and seemingly ruthless Attolia. In her small mountain country, Eddis controls the only bridge between the valley nation of Sounis and the coastal kingdom of Attolia, while all three are threatened by the ships of the powerful Medes. As the web of intrigue and shifting allegiances expands, and war is imminent, the Queen's Thief risks everything on an audacious and cunning military strategy to bring the two queens together--and to steal Attolia for himself. This remarkable fantasy, with its appealing characters, emotional intensity, witty dialogue, and inventive plot, will have teen fans panting for more. (Ages 12 and older) --Patty Campbell

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:32 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Forsaken by the gods and left to his own devices, Eugenides, Royal Thief of Eddis, summons all his wit and wiles in an attempt to conquer the rival Queen of Attolia.

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