3:30 pm EDT, August 18, 2019

‘The Queen’s Thief’ book 6 release date delay, plot: Everything we know

After being postponed, Megan Whalen Turner’s The Queen’s Thief book 6 has a new release date. When will the wait for Return of the Thief be over?

The highly anticipated fifth book in The Queen’s Thief series, Thick as Thieves, was published in May 2017 after a seven year wait. Long time fans of Megan Whalen Turner know how to practice patience, so when the release date of Book 6 ,Return of the Thief, was postponed earlier this year indefinitely we weren’t too disappointed, considering it had only been two years since Thick as Thieves was released.

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We won’t have to wait another seven years for The Queen’s Thief book 6, but we do have to wait another year.

Return of the Thief, Queen's Thief Book 6

The Queen’s Thief book 6 release date delay

Originally slated for a March 2019 release, Return of the Thief’s new release date has been set for August 25, 2020 according to Goodreads, following a delay. Considering the fact that The Queen’s Thief book 6 wasn’t even announced until June 2018, the March turnaround seemed fast to those who were used to waiting upwards of four years between The Queen’s Thief book releases.

According to Megan Whalen Turner’s Tumblr post the delay was due to the pressure of deadlines interfering with her ability to write. Considering the time between each of her previous novels in The Queen’s Thief series, the release being delayed to a year from now (a year and a half after it was originally slated to come out) can only help make Return of the Thief stronger.

Known for her intricate details and ability to weave deceptions in between the lines of her prose, fans of Megan Whalen Turner would wait as long as needed to get the ending that Megan wants us to read. The end of Eugenides’ journey deserves to be exactly how Megan has envisioned it, and we are lucky that Greenwillow Books is understanding with her brilliant craft.

Masterful with the usage of point of view, not only in tense choice and the reasoning behind said decision, but in character point of view selection as well in regards to reveals within the books themselves makes Megan Whalen Turner a truly remarkable writer.

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The Queen’s Thief book 6 plot: What to expect

This section contains major spoilers for all of The Queen’s Thief books up until Return of the Thief.

The title itself reveals much, Return of the Thief implies that in the plot of book 6, Eugenides will once more be the point of view character of The Queen’s Thief, which he hasn’t been since book 3,The King of Attolia.

It looks as though Eugenides’ tricks and deceptions in the last two books worked, as he is now the high king of the Lesser Penninsula, which he foresaw that he had to become if they were to defeat the Mede. After bringing Sounis and Kamet to his side, Eugenides as well as Eddis and Attolia may have a chance to save their small countries from the Mede Empire.

The prophetic dream that he and Eddis both shared of a volcano erupting seems to be on the horizon, if the cover can be trusted. When Thick as Thieves was released the previous covers were rebranded, giving the series a unified look with covers that were both stunning and subtly revealing, much like the slow build of the books themselves.

Not only will Eugenides have to fend off the Mede and an impending volcanic eruption, but it looks as though his old enemy Erondites is returning as well. We thought we’d seen the last of him in The King of Attolia but his schemes aren’t quite finished, it seems.

On top of everything else, there is a new prophecy that foretells the king’s death, which of everything the summary of Return of the Thief reveals, gives me the most anxiety. We already know that Attolia herself has been ill, and Eugenides’ health has declined rapidly with each wound he has sustained throughout the series, so the added worry over his life brings another level of intensity to an already suspenseful end to the series.

One thing we know for sure is that there will be new mythological stories dabbled throughout, enriching the world that Megan Whalen Turner has built over the last twenty four years. Mythology is weaved within each of the books, from stories to poems, giving both the reader and the characters themselves a deeper knowledge of the world and its beliefs.

There will be deception, of not only Eugenides’ keeping his plans from his friends, but surely with the return of his point of view, his unreliable narration will also make a triumphant return.

We can only hope that he will remain in his god’s favor, and that the god of thieves won’t let Eugenides fall.

Previous release dates

Twenty four years in the making, The Queen’s Thief series is culminating with the release of Return of the Thief three years after the fifth book was published in 2017. The Thief was first published in 1996, and can be read as a standalone novel filled with the most endearingly venomous unreliable narrator to ever grace the page.

The series itself takes off with political intrigue in the second book, The Queen of Attolia, which came out in 2000. The Queen of Attolia expanded the world that Megan Whalen Turner brought to life in The Thief, giving us depth to the intricacies between the three small kingdoms of the Lesser Peninsula as the invasion of the Mede hovers at their doorstep.

Six years after The Queen of Attolia’s release The King of Attolia came out in 2006, giving us not only Eugenides out of his element and into the spotlight of the Attolian court, but of new point of view characters such as Costis. Costis, naive and a completely different type of unreliable narrator than Eugenides, gave us an outside glance of Eugenides. The plot twists and reveals within the scope of Costis’ view point gave readers a stronger sense of poignancy that wouldn’t have been so strong if it had come from Eugenides’ perspective.

A Conspiracy of Kings came out in 2010, another four years between book releases, the plotline shifting even further from Eugenides, instead concentrating on the story of Sophos, who readers met in The Thief. The shift away from Eugenides was hard to read for some, but the pieces had fall into place by way of Sophos taking the throne of Sounis in order to set up for the events of Return of the Thief.

Likewise, with the release of Thick as Thieves seven years later, once more fans saw a point of view other than Eugenides, this time following Kamet, the servant of Eugenides’ enemy. Costis and Kamet go on an adventure worth telling, bringing all of the characters together like the pieces of a chessboard as the final battle will soon begin with the upcoming release of Return of the Thief.

the queen's thief

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Related: Interview: Megan Whalen Turner shares secrets of ‘Thick as Thieves’, ‘Return of the Thief’ release date delay brings opportunity to read/re-read series

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