Riot Headline 10 Exciting Books to Read this Summer
Science Fiction/Fantasy

Books for Fans of The Queen’s Thief Series

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Jessica Yang

Staff Writer

Jessica grew up in Silicon Valley, yet somehow ended up rather inept at technology. She dreams of reading luxurious novels all day in a greenhouse, and is guilty of writing puns for money. Majoring in Japanese and English literature made her both wary and weary of the Western canon. She can be bribed with milk tea. Follow her on Twitter @jamteayang.

The release of the fifth book in The Queen’s Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner snuck up on me like, well, the best kind of surprise. I would say it snuck up on me like a thief in the night, but that would only hold water if the thief was a Robin Hood-esque figure who showed up on my front stoop to gift me with banana bread and the joy of reading.

The Thief by Megan Whalen TurnerI saw a tweet on my dash about the book the night before its release, and I immediately fell off my chair onto the floor. Then I crawled to my phone to text my friends and frantically tweet about it. I’ve been in love with the series since middle school, when I accidentally read the The King of Attolia (the third book in the series). The series starts out with The Thief, which is set in a fantasy world inspired by ancient Greece and centers on the scrappy thief Eugenides as he travels the land in search of an ancient treasure. He does all this against his will with a lot of hilarious whining, and ends up bound up in the plans of the gods.

What stands out about the series is the incredibly detailed yet subtle worldbuilding, mindblowing plot twists, the vivid characterization — okay, I’m just naming every element of a book. All this to say, I’m super excited for the latest book, Thick as Thieves.

Unfortunately, I’ve still got a week or so to wait until the book arrives on my doorstep. But I’ll live. There are quite a few other books that invoke what I love about The Queen’s Thief series – detailed worldbuilding, mythology, and scrappy heroes. Here’s what I’ll be reading in the meantime:

The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller – A beautifully written retelling of the Iliad, focused on Achilles and also his blossoming romance with Patroclus. Swoon times one thousand.

Promise of Shadows by Justina Ireland – Zephyr Mourning is a peace-loving failure of a harpy, better at watching TV than practicing magic. But when her sister is murdered, she ends up on the run, serving time in the pits of Tartarus, and encountering Greek gods and goddesses.

Antigoddess by Kendare Blake – When the modern day, supposedly immortal Athena and Hermes start dying, they seek out the prophetess Cassandra, now a regular girl. Together, they fight back against the wave of anti-gods, ancient Olympians determined to preserve their lives by killing off others.

Crown Duel by Sherwood Smith – Countess Meliara and her brother promise their dying father that they will defend their people against the king and keep their father’s convenant. This sends the two impoverished members of nobility into a revolution that shakes up the land.

So, have you read Megan Whalen Turner’s latest yet? Is it good? Please tell me it’s good.