Author Turner started this complex adventure in The Thief, and continued it in The Queen of Attolia and The King of Attolia. I had not read any of these before reading A Conspiracy of Kings. I still really liked it, but I think I would have liked it even more if I had read the other ones first. A lot of the plot has to do with political strategy, enemies, alliances, agreements & betrayals. When you can keep it straight, the brilliance of the strategizing is really fun.
Think of it as the TV show Survivor…only the players are real queens and kings and countries are at stake. They really are just trying to outwit, outplay & outlast each other. But in this game, if your torch goes out, you’re dead and your country is invaded.
In this one, the future King of Sounis is Sophos. He’s a teenager. I read that he made a kind of clumsy, whiny appearance in the other books. The very last thing he wants is to be King. There are actually a lot of other people who don’t look forward to him being King either. His own father has hidden him away with his books and his tutors – out of sight, out of mind.
When Sophos is kidnapped in a surprise attack and sold into slavery, he oddly finds relief from the pressure of having to face his future. As a slave, he has certain doable tasks to perform. He doesn’t have to make any decisions. He makes friends. What he doesn’t expect is all the information he can get when he isn’t living as the protected prince. He finds himself unable to ignore the battles that are taking place that imperil his country, his family and his friends. He also discovers that the the things he has been learning in books really can help him in his real life. He also discovers that having people think you are capable of very little, can be a pretty powerful tool. He plots a daring escape, manages an unlikely rescue and begins planning a complex series of alliances and maneuvers that show he really has the stuff of which leaders are made. Play the Power Match Game to see if you are clever enough to be King. Author: Megan Whelan Turner
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|Here are links to the other books in the series. If you like these, also try The Ranger’s Apprentice series.|