The Liar's Knot by M.A. Carrick
Publication Date: December 7th, 2021
Paperback. 672 pages.
Publication Date: December 7th, 2021
Paperback. 672 pages.
About The Liar's Knot:
"Trust is the thread that binds us . . . and the rope that hangs us.
In Nadezra, peace is as tenuous as a single thread. The ruthless House Indestor has been destroyed, but darkness still weaves through the city’s filthy back alleys and jewel-bright gardens, seen by those who know where to look.
Derossi Vargo has always known. He has sacrificed more than anyone imagines to carve himself a position of power among the nobility, hiding a will of steel behind a velvet smile. He'll be damned if he lets anyone threaten what he's built.
Grey Serrado knows all too well. Bent under the yoke of too many burdens, he fights to protect the city’s most vulnerable. Sooner or later, that fight will demand more than he can give.
And Ren, daughter of no clan, knows best of all. Caught in a knot of lies, torn between her heritage and her aristocratic masquerade, she relies on her gift for reading pattern to survive. And it shows her the web of corruption that traps her city.
But all three have yet to discover just how far that web stretches. And in the end, it will take more than knives to cut themselves free..."
Need to catch up? Find my review for book #1, The Mask of Mirrors, here.
The Mask of Mirrors was one of my favorite 2020 releases, which made The Liar's Knot one of my most anticipated books of 2021, and I'm happy to report that it did not disappoint in the slightest!
I was especially excited to return to all of my favorite characters: Ren, Vargo, Grey, and of course the elusive Mr. Peabody. The Liar's Knot switches perspectives between Ren, Vargo, and Grey, and I genuinely love each one equally, something that can be quite rare with multiple POVs for me. Ren is constantly impressive to me because I can barely keep track of myself on a day to day basis, let alone more than three unique personalities! I love a good 'undercover' type of character, so I have had a blast watching Ren navigate her various personas and try to keep track of everything while still trying to stay true to herself and make time for those who mean the most to her. We really get to see a lot of growth with Ren and how she learns to trust and open herself up to certain people, and I enjoyed watching her journey in this book immensely.
Then there's Vargo and Grey, two very different yet also surprisingly similar men who have plenty of their own secrets to keep track of as well. Vargo seems to have become quite a fan favorite, and I have to agree that I find him utterly compelling and exciting to follow. Vargo is one of those characters that is so easy to relate with because of his personality, and his morally grey actions are what help to make him such a great character. I really loved getting a chance to follow Vargo more in this book and get to know him more, and I cannot wait to see where his story takes him in the next book. I'm also excited to see where Grey's story ends up taking him, as I feel like Grey really had some immense growth and change in this book that will have some pretty big effects in the next book. I also love following Grey's character because I feel like he is both predicable and unpredictable, and I have such a fun time seeing what he'll do next. Grey has had his fair share of struggles, and I like seeing how he handles all of the old and new obstacles that are thrown his way.
The Liar's Knot really dives deeper into both our main characters' minds and the magic that exists within this universe. There are some elements that I can't really mention because I don't want to give away anything, but I can say that I think it really allows for readers to dig more into the way that magic works in this world and to better understand what it is and where it may come from. I'm extremely impressed by how well the authors have managed to imbue so much myth and culture into the magic itself, as well as the entire society of Nadezra. Everything feels so tangible and is therefore easy to immerse yourself in, which is always something I look for in an involved fantasy novel like The Liar's Knot.
The Rook & Rose trilogy is overflowing with secrets, lies, and so much subterfuge and I have been loving every second of it. There are a lot of details, names, etc. to remember in this story, and I have to confess that I'm not always the best at remembering all of them. That being said, I felt that the authors did a good job of littering enough context and clues throughout the book that made it easy to sort of catch-up and follow along with what was happening. My biggest struggle was with remembering all the names in this book, but not enough to where it affected my enjoyment of the novel. I actually really love how much depth there is in this series so far, between the magic system itself to the politics to the personal elements, because I think it allows for the entire world to be fleshed out so much more.
The Liar's Knot felt slightly slower paced than the first book, but I think that fit well with the overall pacing of the story and where this book picked up. There were some well-placed higher intensity moments that I think created a great balance in the overall pacing of the story, and that combined with the almost ever-present tension lingering in the atmosphere because of how many different secrets are almost constantly at stake made for a book that was hard to put down. The prose is absolutely beautiful and makes for a truly pleasurable reading experience. It's obvious to me how much care goes into crafting words and sentences that both sound incredibly pleasing and manage to convey just the right amount of detail and intrigue about the world.
Overall, I've given The Liar's Knot five stars! I cannot wait to read the third (and final! 🙁) book in this series.
*I received a copy of The Liar's Knot courtesy of the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*