I do not know the grammatical meaning of "は" and when to add a "は" in between the quotative particle and the verb, namely "とは思う".

Here is the example sentence without "は",


And the example sentence with "は".

Q: 売れない商品は削除すべき?



Simply, は in this type of とは is a contrast marker. ~とは is commonly used with だが, けれども, etc.

  • 悪くないと言ったが、最高だと言っていない。
  • 勝ちたいと思うが、難しいだろう。
  • 食べたいと思いますよ。
    Well, I want to eat it. (But...)
    (contrast implied; there is a reason he cannot eat it)

Of course とは has other usages, 「彼が学校の先生だったとは驚いた。」「チワワとは犬の一種です。」

  • I guess last two sentences can be explained as 「彼が学校の先生だったというのは驚いた。」「チワワというのは犬の一種です。」, am I right? – chika May 8 '18 at 11:58

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