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Traitor's Blade

(Greatcoats #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  18,425 ratings  ·  2,224 reviews
Falcio is the first Cantor of the Greatcoats. Trained in the fighting arts and the laws of Tristia, the Greatcoats are travelling Magisters upholding King’s Law. They are heroes. Or at least they were, until they stood aside while the Dukes took the kingdom, and impaled their King’s head on a spike.

Now Tristia is on the verge of collapse and the barbarians are sniffing at
Hardcover, Edition without dustjacket, 370 pages
Published March 6th 2014 by Jo Fletcher Books (first published February 10th 2014)
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Mabari I hope it's okay if I butt in here- one thing I loved about Traitor's Blade was reading the exchanges and antics between Falcio, Kest, & Brasti. Those…moreI hope it's okay if I butt in here- one thing I loved about Traitor's Blade was reading the exchanges and antics between Falcio, Kest, & Brasti. Those moments of camaraderie were not only frequently funny but went so far to show the trust and the friendship that the three have for each other. You come to understand how much they've been through together without a big, dry info-dump to tell you so.

This was something I loved in Lies of Locke Lamora as well. The group of thieves have the same sort of dynamic that make the characters very endearing. You root for them and worry about them, just like Castell's Magisters.

Anyway- that's just my two cents! If this was a question meant only for the author than I apologize, sorry!

But Coolcurry, if you're asking if you should read this because you enjoyed Lies of Locke Lamora, I would say yes! (less)
Sebastien Castell Not magical powers, no. They are superlatively skilled as duellists, since that's the nature of their jobs (and they've lived this long so they must b…moreNot magical powers, no. They are superlatively skilled as duellists, since that's the nature of their jobs (and they've lived this long so they must be pretty good.)(less)

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Average rating 4.06  · 
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Mark Lawrence
Apr 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The book has sat on my shelf altogether too long (as many do, sadly) and I was goaded into reading it by a friend who said I would like it. She was not wrong.

I'm giving this 5* since it's a gripping read with genuine emotion and excitement, and solid writing. I have a couple of niggles but they're minor in the grand scheme of things.

Basically this is the three musketeers in a fantasy setting. Well, that's unfair... The Three Musketeers is what springs to mind and gives you the vibe. The characte
Melissa ♥ Dog/Wolf Lover ♥ Martin
UPDATE: 99 cents Kindle US 12/15/19


This freaking book is on my favorites list and holy crap on a cracker if it didn't give me three panic attacks!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Let me take a moment to get this off my chest. I'm going to do this from time to time in a book!

You damn murderous, evil torture, •sshole, Patriana, I want to bash you into the ground over and over until you seep back into hell
May 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Petrik by: Eon ♒Windrunner♒
This is a BR (which I sucked at) with my beloved Greatcoats: TS, Sarah, Aria, Mary, Celeste, Tweebie

Hope you don’t get bored of hearing this, but there is no other simple way for me to describe Traitor’s Blade, Sebastien de Castell’s debut work and the first book in his Greatcoats quartet, other than that it’s a blend of Alexandre Dumas’s ‘The Three Musketeers’ and Joe Abercrombie’s ‘The First Law’ series.

“The First Law is that men are free, for without the freedom to choose, men cannot

This was so charming, funny, and whimsical, while still being full of action. This book was just amazing, completely and utterly amazing. Sebastien de Castell has made a fan for life. Traitor's Blade is, so far, the best book I've read in 2016.

“The first rule of the sword is - put the pointy end in the other man.”

This story is surrounding three Greatcoats, who used to be the judge and jury for King Paelis. That is, until he was killed. Yet before his death he forced his Greatcoats t
Virginia Ronan ♥ Herondale ♥
”Pretend, just for a moment, that you have attained your most deep-seated desire. Not the simple, sensible one you tell your friends about, but the dream that’s so close to your heart that even as a child you hesitated to speak it out loud.”

And so the story begins! When I went into this book I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into, but now that I finished it I can say that I really enjoyed the “Traitor’s Blade”. XD This was really good! Maybe it was so good because I went into it
Jan 30, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5 stars - this book was a lot of fun and a start to a series that I have a feeling will get better with each book. It had some weak points, like the mostly mustache twirling villains and the fact that the main character has his own version of "you know nothing Jon Snow", but the non-villains are charming and the set up leaves me with a lot of hope for the potential of the series.

Re-read January 2021: re-read on audio and preferred that
Robin (Bridge Four)
Sale Alert: Kindle daily deal for 7Jun21 $0.99

My fellow fantasy lover and friend Eon (Windrunner) was kind enough to send me a copy of this book. So now it is totally on my short list to read and the day has come

Reading with some friends at Buddies books and baubles on Sept 12

Three Musketeer’s + Magic. I’m totally in.

I’m not really sure what I was expecting but this probably wasn’t it. I was assuming that it would be more like Disney’s version of the Three Musketeers with magic but it is much d
James Tivendale
May 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
Traitor's Blade is the debut novel by the immensely talented Sebastien de Castell. Many of my friends are racing through and really enjoying Greatcoats so I decided to jump on the bandwagon to see what all the fuss is about.

The Greatcoats were the King's elite soldiers simply named after their attire. They acted as magistrates, upheld the King's law and helped keep peace throughout the land. This was until they stepped aside when a battle loomed and allowed the execution of the King at the hand
Lady Luna. ✨
I'm done wallowing in my disappointment, full review now up!


"Sometimes we all have to go a little mad, don't we, Falcio?' I thought about that for a moment. 'And sometimes we have to return to sanity"

I really liked this book! I thought it was funny, well written and I really liked the characters, however I just didn't love it. This was one of my most anticipated series of 2017. So my expectations were through the roof. Unfortunately my expectations were not met. I had a few issues
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Amazing. Hands down the best book I've read this year! It's like The Three Musketeers meets Locke Lamora meets pure awesomeness. Full of humor, adventure, wisdom, sadness, twists, turns and just pure epicness!
Total fangirling right now but I'm not even sorry! Haha
Helen 2.0
Jul 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book is like a fantasy oven that will leave your heart all warm and toasty.
Mary ~Ravager of Tomes~
Actual Rating: 2.5 Stars

"Well... if I have to die, at least there is a pretty damn good chance someone will write a song about it."

Honestly, I've been dreading writing this review. That's never a great sign.

But it's because this book didn't make me feel much in the way of anything. I didn't loathe it, but I didn't love it. It just sort of... exists?

I guess the easiest way to review this will be to lay out the pros & cons:


✔ The Humor - This book is undoubtedly hilarious! I really enjoye
Dana Ilie
Oct 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
In my opinion Sebastien de Castell does a pretty amazing job, his debut is one of the betters that I have read. It's hard to really make something new in the epic/ sword and sorcery fantasy but this is exactly what Sebastien de Castell does in Traitor's Blade. Definitely a book and author to add to your must read list.

There is something very compelling about a good Arthurian legend story – a great quest, if you will, to right wrongs and return the kingdom to good after a period of evil. There’s
Jan 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Markus by: Eon ♒Windrunner♒
Shelves: fantasy, 2017
"My name is Falcio val Mond, First Cantor of the Greatcoats, and this was only the first of a great many bad days to come".

Eon, a man of exquisite fantasy tastes, gave me this book about a year ago and awful friend that I am, I haven't read it until now. But better late than never, yes?

The land of Tristia is pretty much a shithole of misery and exploitation. Until a young and idealist king takes the throne and decides to implement law and justice, and creates an order of magisters, Greatcoat
Eon ♒Windrunner♒
Mar 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
Shelves: favourites
April 2017 reread before Tyrant's Throne done and it was as sublimely swashbuckling as the first time. -

April 2016 - Third re-read in anticipation of Saint's Blood!
Final verdict - still as pointy as ever! LOVE IT.


"The first rule of the sword is - put the pointy end in the other man"

Isn't this a wonderful time to be a reader of fantasy?

There are so many new authors delivering fantastic entries into the genre with their debut efforts that I canno
Mar 31, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was pondering how to rate this and I’ve finally reached the verdict; the first half of the book gets three stars and the second half gets four stars so the actual rating is 3.5 stars.

Still reading? Oh well, I guess I’ll share my thoughts with you if you insist. :)

Traitor’s Blade is a novel which brings us a tale of the Greatcoats or at least what is left of them. They were once the King’s traveling magistrates with a task of upholding his law. When the Dukes of the kingdom Tristia turned aga
Mayim de Vries
Oct 24, 2017 rated it liked it
“The First Law is that men are free for without the freedom to choose, men cannot serve their heart, and without heart they cannot serve their Gods, their Saints, or their King.”
King’s Laws

“All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.”
Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Article 1

What a precarious mix of fantastic ideas and far-fetched conveniences this book was. On the
Petros Triantafyllou
Sep 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Petros by: Pinkie_pie
Traitor's Blade is a fascinating story with witty, humorous and sentimental elements. De Castell's imaginative language, in combination with the extremely fast pacing and unexpected circumstances, provides the story with a cinematic vignette, making the book stand out in the genre.

The characters seemed really flat at first, but as you get to know them better, you get attached really fast, understanding their emotions, supporting their actions, and rooting for their achievements. The world buildi
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
Everybody Loves this One Oh Bloody Hell I am Doomed but Hey Eon Recommended it So it Can't Be that Bad of Course it Can't Buddy Read (ELtOOBHIaDbHERisiCBtBoCiCBR™) with the BBB Cult ●

DNF at 53%. Yeah yeah yeah, shame on me and all that crap.

Forgive me Father Eon, for I have sinned. Yes, I have failed to grasp the utter greatness and general brilliance of one of your favourite books. Yes, I have once again read a book wrong. I am the lowliest, unworthiest of shrimps. I am so terribly sorry f
Originally reviewed at Bookwraiths Reviews

In Traitor’s Blade, Sebastien de Castell has succeeded in deftly crafting a sword and sorcery delight that harkens back to a simpler time when fantasy readers expected to be entertained with humor as well as action. Here, the characters’ playful banter and sword fighting flare is near equal to the legendary Three Musketeers and makes this a debut novel that should not be missed by any true fan of action and adventure tales. The simple fact is that Trait
This Review ✍️ Blog 📖 Twitter 🐦 Instagram 📷 Support me

“The archer is the true weapon; the bow is just a long piece of wood.”

I have read the whole Spellslinger series because I heard good things about the author and I was not impressed upon finishing it. I finished the first book in the Greatcoats series and I am already impressed!

We follow the story of three of the Greatcoats, basically heroes of the king and are in charge of upholding his law. At least they were because the king h
Mogsy (MMOGC)
5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

Oh my, this one was SO MUCH FUN. Unexpectedly so. Even when the earliest descriptions came trickling in calling this book a bold, dashing adventure and pure, swashbuckling entertainment, I had no idea! I figured those were just buzzwords, right? Ah, no. In this case, Traitor's Blade really does deliver the great time that all those descriptions promise.

There are so many things I love about this book, but most of all I love
Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller
[3.5/5 stars] This is one of those books that improves as it goes. My initial impression from just the first chapter was not fantastic. The story was told in a very over-the-top sarcastic voice that was almost condescending to the reader. It made me question whether the book would offer enough substance, or if I was in for a whole lot of bolstering and nothing else. Thankfully, about the point I would’ve gotten fed up, it started to tone down and I had just enough interest to keep going.

Then I
Natalie Monroe
DNF at 40%

At some point you have to ask yourself: is it worth the stress to read on?

"My name is Falcio Val Mond, First Cantor of the Greatcoats, and this was only the first of a great many bad days to come."

Traitor's Blade, unlike most adult high fantasy, is written in conversational first-person. Falcio talks to the reader quite frequently, that wink-wink-nudge-nudge style that very, very easily strays into annoying territory.

And that's exactly what it damn did. I read so many telling, no
Sep 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Here is my first review on Grimdark Magazine! Check it out and other great reviews here:
Grimdark Magazine

I will start this off by saying, Sebastien is a top guy, I’ve always loved meeting him at various events and was very much looking forward to reading this first instalment in The Greatcoats.

I was really really hoping I’d like it.

And I LOVED it! Really really loved it.

“When you're fighting a crowd, it's good to shout potentially threatening things like "Crossbows!" or "Fire!" or "Giant Flying
Apr 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everybody
‘That’s what being free means – not the right to do whatever you want, but the right to take a stand and say what you’ll die for.’

“Traitor’s Blade” is the first book in the Greatcoats series. I first stumbled upon this book when reading a great review of Samir. Thanks for turning my attention to this interesting book! ;)

What can I say, this book contains a bold story, resembling A. Dumas “Three Musketeer’s” with lot’s of swordplay, alluring heroes, twists, tricks, treachery, action, fights
TS Chan
Aug 20, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to TS by: Eon ♒Windrunner♒
Shelves: re-read
The First Law is that men are free...

A laudable debut by Sebastian de Castell, Traitor's Blade has equal measures of humour, swashbuckling action, and heart. Set in an absolutely messed up world of independently ruled duchies, the story is told from the first person POV of Falcio val Mond, the First Cantor of the fallen Greatcoats.

The story started off with a bang as Falcio and his two best friends and fellow Greatcoats, Brasti and Kest, found themselves in deep trouble, which continued to hou
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, 2017-shelf
I think I may have found a new fantasy favorite. Or one among a handful I can go ga-ga over, anyway. :)

It's refreshing as hell. I think it's the writing and the dialogue more than anything, but I still feel refreshed and eager even when really horrible stuff is happening. I think it's how the information is conveyed rather than the fact of it. I mean, getting a room in an inn with a duke's head in a bag, going out back to bury it properly with the innkeeper? Brilliant.

I've heard others describe
May 11, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5 stars.

I don’t want anybody getting the wrong idea, so I’m going to say this upfront. I really, really enjoyed reading this book. I may have had my few issues with it, but I would honestly still highly recommend it to anybody who is looking for a fun, entertaining read, because this definitely fits the bill.

This book sits on the lighter end of fantasy. Magic only plays a minor role within the story as a whole, and there's no specific "magic system" like you might find in a Sanderson nov
Apr 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: must-read
First a big thank you to the GR epic crew; Samir, Orient,
and Craig who encouraged me to read this book.
(Craig, I WILL beat you on #2 ;) )

There are times in a life where you read a book,
and suddenly you are transported inside the book.
Where you walk down every road, fight every battle,
and sit around a campfire drinking to those who died,
while embellishing your heroic feats.
This is one of those books.

There is nothing I did not like about this book,
and that is saying something.
It is a book o
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Hi Folks!

My tenth novel, WAY OF THE ARGOSI is in stores in around the world.

You can get a pair of free stories here.

The best way to stay up to date is at, but I'm also on that Facebook thing. Also that Twitter thing. One day I'll even remember to get on that Instagram thing.

As to who I am? Well . . .

Sebastien de Castell had just finished a degree in Archaeology when he started

Other books in the series

Greatcoats (4 books)
  • Knight's Shadow (Greatcoats, #2)
  • Saint's Blood (Greatcoats, #3)
  • Tyrant's Throne (Greatcoats, #4)

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