Parental Warning: “The Return of the Thief”

It is with great regret and no small measure of annoyance that we find the need to warn parents that the sixth and last book of Meghan Whalen Turner’s The Queen’s Thief series needs editing.

After successfully skirting dangerous issues for five wonderful and engaging installments – leading us to recommend the series in our Issue 3 “Book List” – in the sixth installment the author comes out of left field and makes it clear that two of the supporting characters are homosexual.

While there are no gratuitous sex scenes, nevertheless there is also no mistaking it. There are perhaps 5 or 6 scenes throughout the book that make further reference to it, or to the same issue with minor characters.

We cannot express just how disappointing and frustrating this is, and wanted to make sure you had adequate warning before simply purchasing the book for your teens on the assumption that it would be clean like the others.

Below, we have given the pertinent page and line numbers for parents who wish to salvage the book without having the time to read the entire series. The insertions fit smoothly with the general storyline and character arcs.

If anyone finds a scene we missed, please let us know via our contact page.

Spoiler-Free Edits (Hardcover Edition)

Necessary hand-written insertions/replacements are in itallics. Deletions are shown by …

Page 161

  • Line 5. Change to: “Someone believes in me, even with all my faults, and don’t give me that look. You’ll learn to care, someday.”
  • Lines 7-9. Cut so it reads “By then, I knew…how Relius had been arrested for treason when his lover had turned out to be a spy for the Mede emperor.”
  • Line 15. Change to “this friend had been constant for years”
  • You may wish to cut other sentences on this page, but by this point in the series no one will be expecting Relius to be living a saintly life and the information won’t come as a shock.

Page 222

  • Lines 3-4. Cut the first sentence on line 3 up to the word Teleus. Then change the rest of the sentence to say, “Teleus turned to see my frown.”
  • Line 5. Change to, “He does not approve of my going,” said Relius.
  • Lines 19-20. Change to, “Teleus clapped him grimly on the shoulder and left.”
  • Lines 22-23. Cut completely.

Page 229

  • Lines 14-15. Cut the sentence about winter sports in Eddis.

Page 269

  • Lines 2-3. Cut the entire sentence about Legarus. You may want to retroactively edit the scene near the two-thirds mark of King of Attolia where Aristogiton’s squad is in prison and Legarus is crying to say that he was betrayed by a friend.

Page 365

  • Line 11. Change to, “that the friend he’d betrayed had died”

Page 422

  • Line 16. Cut “and kisses.” It has been established that formal greetings involve some kind of kiss of peace but in the context it just comes across weird.

Pages 441-443 (Optional)

  • You may want to modify the exposition about the behavior of the gods and goddesses, but since Greek/imitation Greek deities are notoriously immoral it can probably be glossed over and ignored.

Issue 12

For your reading enjoyment in all the extra leisure moments you may be having these days, we are happy to present our next issue!  Be sure to check out the section on giving haircuts – it may come in handy!

Altar & Hearth Issue 12 Spring-Summer 2020 cover

Merry Christmas, and…

…enjoy Issue 11!  We made it, yay!  (And there’s a bit of an explanation of why this issue is sooooooo late inside.)  As always, we welcome your feedback, and we’re always accepting submissions and ideas for future articles.

We are also in the process of compiling an email list, so if you would like to be on it, just shoot us a note at, or follow us from the sidebar.  If you end up on the list and would like to be removed, simply reply to that effect.

Have a blessed 2020!

Altar & Hearth Issue 11 Cover

It’s gonna be late…

…but it is coming!

Issue 11 is looking like it will be out in late November or December at this point due to a HUGE sewing project with a tight deadline that is eating up most of our editor’s free time at the moment. (She’s looking forward to having a life again afterwards.)

Submissions are therefore still open, so if you have an idea for an article, or even suggestions for what you would like to see an article on, send it in!

Issue 9 squeaks in under the wire!

It’s FINALLY here!  Before Thanksgiving, no less, which is rather amazing considering how many delays we had this time around.  Hopefully you’ll find it well worth the wait, even if we didn’t quite make our All Saints’ Day projection.  A huge thank-you to all of our contributors who sent stories and poems!

Stay warm and have a wonderful holiday season with your families!

Altar & Hearth Issue 9 Fall-Winter 2018 Cover

I spy an issue in the distance!

At the moment, the plan is to put out Issue 9 around All Saints’ Day, at the end of October.  Our managing editor moved, again, and since it’s a much more permanent move this time there has been a lot of paperwork and errands that need doing.  Plus she doesn’t have internet at her apartment yet, so that makes things go even more slowly.

We are still taking submissions for this issue if you have a piece you’d like to see published!



Help the Sisters!

30660966_152944647370760_r.jpegAs of August 5, 2018, two traditional Catholic Benedictine nuns will be relying on the generosity of friends and parishioners for their lodging.  To donate to their cause, use this link to their GoFundMe page:


Any assistance will be remembered in the congregation’s prayers!



Father Lehtoranta has told me that thanks to the generosity of many contributors, he and St. Jerome Homeschool Library have reached their $6,000 goal needed to produce the Latin Mass board book!

Can’t wait to see it in print!

In the meantime, if you’ve got a great idea for an article, we are now accepting submissions and advertisements for the 2018 issues of Altar & Hearth.  The release date for Issue 8 isn’t set in stone yet, but it will probably be available shortly after Easter.