The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell
Book Title: The Kingdom of Liars
Book Description: “In this brilliant debut fantasy, a story of secrets, rebellion, and murder are shattering the Hollows, where magic costs memory to use, and only the son of the kingdom’s despised traitor holds the truth. Michael is branded a traitor as a child because of the murder of the king’s nine-year-old son, by his father David Kingman. Ten years later on Michael lives a hardscrabble life, with his sister Gwen, performing crimes with his friends against minor royals in a weak attempt at striking back at the world that rejects him and his family. In a world where memory is the coin that pays for magic, Michael knows something is there in the hot white emptiness of his mind. So when the opportunity arrives to get folded back into court, via the most politically dangerous member of the kingdom’s royal council, Michael takes it, desperate to find a way back to his past. He discovers a royal family that is spiraling into a self-serving dictatorship as gun-wielding rebels clash against magically trained militia. What the truth holds is a set of shocking revelations that will completely change the Hollows, if Michael and his friends and family can survive long enough to see it.”
Book Author: Nick Martell
Book Format: Hardcover
Date published: 2020-05-05
Number Of Pages: 608
Writing - 9/10
Development - 7/10
Overall - 8/10
User Review( votes)
The Kingdom of Liars is the first novel in a brand new series, The Legacy of the Mercenary Kings, by Nick Martell. It’s an epic fantasy series, full of magic, politics, and the quest for the truth.
A Mercenary King Rises in The Kingdom of Liars
The Kingdom of Liars is simultaneously the start of a new series (The Legacy of the Mercenary Kings) and the debut novel of Nick Martell. It’s an epic fantasy full of magic, politics, intrigue, and the desperation that comes with making a name for oneself.
Michael’s family name is Kingman. Once upon a time, that meant something positive. But after the actions of his father, it has become a name met with scorn and venom. After having to grow up under that shadow, Michael has had enough.
Now he’s set to find out the truth of what happened that night, all while saving the name of his family and forging a new path for himself. But along the way, he’ll have to dive into a world of magic and politics.
The Kingdom of Liars is a hefty novel, coming in at six hundred and eight pages. That gives it plenty of time for us to get to know the world and the main characters. Understandably, this is a world full of details, schemes, and expansive magical systems.
The plight of the Kingman family is not something that most of us will have personally experienced, and yet, the way it is told makes it all feel so real and poignant. Their pain feels real, and thus Michael’s character comes to life—even if readers probably won’t agree with all of the decisions he makes along the way.
Michael’s story starts off rough and raw—so full of angst and pain. But by the end, it evolves into something more, as Michael forges a new path for himself. There’s something fascinating in that tale. Something familiar, but in a good way.
The politics and magic of this world were an immediate draw for me, as was the longer form of storytelling. This is quickly setting up to be a series worth watching, as they delve ever further into the history and future of the Hollows.
The Kingdom of Liars is admittedly a novel that starts off a bit more slowly than one might expect. Then again, it likely didn’t feel the need to rush forward. Thus, it took me a little while to get into the story and the characters involved.
That being said, the pace picks up significantly slightly before the halfway mark, and it doesn’t slow down until the very end (and, arguably, not even then). The dramatic shift carries more impact thanks to all of the worldbuilding the first half of the novel focused on.
Ultimately, I really enjoyed the blend, though I do wish that it were slightly better balanced. I do think the entire journey is worth reading, and for more than one reason. The character development of the three Kingman children, but mainly Michael, is fascinating—and is sure to be a memorable one.
The Kingdom of Liars was ultimately a whirlwind of a read, introducing us to a world full of magic and politics. It’s a complex story, with plenty of twists and turns to throw at the readers. The magical system alone was fascinating and became all the more so as new elements were introduced, though I’m hoping that future novels will reveal even more about the magical system of the world.
I’ll grant that this is probably not a novel for everyone, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. In fact, I’m actively looking forward to the next novel in the series.
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