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The Kingdom of Liars

(The Legacy of the Mercenary Kings #1)

3.69  ·  Rating details ·  72 ratings  ·  57 reviews
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 kingdoms despised traitor holds the truth.

Michael is branded a traitor as a child because of the murder of the kings nine-year-old son, by his father David Kingman. Ten years later on Michael lives a hardscrabble
Hardcover, 608 pages
Expected publication: May 5th 2020 by Gallery / Saga Press
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Nick Martell There's a fair amount of violence, but no explicit sex scenes.…moreThere's a fair amount of violence, but no explicit sex scenes. (less)

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ARC provided by the publisherSaga Pressin exchange for an honest review.

The Kingdom of Liars is a solid debut thats quite challenging to get through at first, but the second half offers rewarding experience to those who read the novel to its completion.

Similar to many cases with debuts by an unknown author in the past, my interest to read The Kingdom of Liars, the first book in The Legacy of The Mercenary Kings series by Nick Martell, was sparked due to the gorgeous cover art by Bastien
Feb 22, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: net-galley
My thanks to Gallery/Saga press, Netgalley and the author Nick Martell.
I did give up on this book. I was not jiving with any characters. Also, guns. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy shooting. That's how I was raised. Paper targets, and Tin cans! But, I truly don't like it when guns cross over into fantasy. Sure, I'll admit that I adore epic and grimdark fantasy. Still, as soon as guns are introduced I cringe. I'm just a sucker for swords and all. I love trebouchets. Yeah, that is likely the wrong
James Lafayette Tivendale
I received an uncorrected proof copy of The Kingdom of Liars in exchange for an honest review. I would like to thank Nick Martell and Gollancz for the opportunity.

The Kingdom of Liars, the first entry in The Legacy of the Mercenary King series, is the tale of Michael Kingman. He relays his story to us regarding the events that led him to be on trial as a King Killer, which he rather melodramatically refers to as "the greatest story ever told." Ten years prior to this, Michael's father was also
Nils | nilsreviewsit
Dying wasnt new to me. I had an understanding that it would come for us all one day; all that differed was the time. It was oddly comforting in a way. It was the only time nobles, Royals, and commoners were the same. We all walked into the darkness in the end, meeting whatever waited for us. There were some days that I thought it would be the only time in my life I would be at peace.

The Kingdom of Liars is the upcoming debut by Nick Martell. This is one book that certainly starts off with a bang
Chelsea Humphrey
I'm between 3-3.5 stars on this one, due to the painfully slow first half followed by an incredible second act. While I do not claim to be the resident expert on fantasy novels of any kind, I feel like I have read enough at this point to have a general understanding of the various tropes and sub-genres that are popular. That said, I initially requested this book for 2 reasons: 1) I'm really enjoying reading more adult fantasy than YA fantasy this year and 2) Brandon Sanderson blurbed it, so DUH. ...more
Martells Kingdom Of Liars is the first novel in a planned epic fantasy series, Legacy of the Mercenary Kings. It is a complex fantasy featuring a feudal court, a vicious rebellion, magical powers (fabrications), and court intrigue. The world-building is terrific, offering the reader a glimpse of a small corner of the universe, the Hollows, which despite the name which might lead you to think of forests and streams, is a feudal city of lords and ladies and a desperate underclass keyed up to ...more
James Islington
Feb 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
More a quick recommendation than a proper review, but this is another debut Ive enjoyed recently! I initially gave The Kingdom of Liars a shot because the core concept (memory as a cost for using magic) sounded fascinating, and while that didnt play out exactly as I expectedits a more a danger for those who overuse their magic, rather than an everyday costits still used to good effect, and the smartly plotted story was more than enough to keep me engaged. Theres great worldbuilding, characters ...more
Jeremy Szal
Jan 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy, 2020, blurbed
In my blurb for this book, I called it, "a richly rewarding fantasy that seethes with mysteries, fused with a mindscrew of a magic system". At the risk of becoming a self-quoting tosser: it really is that good.

You won't find dragons and oaths and tales of heroism here, not in the traditional sense. Here, the storytelling revolves around the idea that using magic makes you suffer from memory loss. As a result, the central narrative revolves around people lying and deceiving and misleading
Mar 04, 2020 rated it really liked it
A fantasy debut full of twists, mystery and reveals. Honestly, this book was very unpredictable for me; I really didn't know where things would end up and it had me guessing right up until the very end. The plot twists were my favorite part of this book.
The magic reminded me a bit of Brandon Sanderson with its unique naming system and the very real cost of magic use. The idea of memories was explored a lot in this book and I found this theme to be extremely interesting. I haven't read many books
Ria the Reader
Feb 25, 2020 rated it liked it
Heavy in politics, lots of rebellions, death, and intrigue. After a while I lost interest though that's through no fault of the books. Michael Kingman is a fascinating character and I will be seeing where this story goes later on. DNF at 54%.
Ellie Manning
Dec 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A wonderful fantasy novel, by debut author Nick Martell, that I couldn't put down!

Michael Kingman, branded a traitor for the crimes of his father, has a family legacy to live up to and a past to confront to do it. In a world where the nobility can use magic at the price of their memories, Michael must face the political corruption of the High Nobility of the Hollows in order to find the truth about his family, and himself. But who's memories can he trust, if not his own?

Pub date 05/05/20.
Abi (The Knights Who Say Book)
This wasn't good. I would have DNF'd it at 3% based on the bad writing, but it was an ARC from netgalley and I didn't want an unfinished book on my record, so I persevered in the hopes that it would get better. It didn't.

The characters were not fleshed out. There were quite a few of them not more than a book could handle, mind you, so that's not really an excuse and none of them got enough focus for me to actually care about them. Michael, the main character, is constantly telling you how much
Jan 15, 2020 rated it liked it
I received a free eARC of this in exchange for an unbiased review.
Well, that was a disappointment. The overarching story was good. A young man who believes his father was wrongfully executed for killing the prince 10 years ago seeks to find out the truth when the opportunity presents itself. Unfortunately, the product was messy. I kept writing it off as an unreliable narrator, but the actions that Michael takes don't make sense. If he has been conning nobles for years and surviving in this
Lynn Amundsen
Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell is a fun ride. It starts with the anti-hero, Michael Kingman. You will quickly learn to love this exasperating guy with a huge chip on his shoulder and an overreaching sense of responsibility for everyone he cares about. The author creates an elaborate world where very little can be trusted, the use of magic destroys memory and even the written word is distorted by corruption. The ending is mind blowing, I honestly usually can guess the direction a book is ...more
Mar 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing
The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell was a superb fantasy debut that I had my attention from start to finish. Each time I flicked through a page, I just kept on going and everything around me didn't matter because this book had me in a bookish headlock that I didn't want to get out of 😂. This was highly aided by the combination of fantasy and mystery. At no point did I know what was going to happen which was so refreshing!

The story begins with the main character of Michael Kingman on trial for
Anne Monteith
This is the authors debut novel and while the story shows great promise theres need for improvement. Since this was an ARC, I did not want to DNF, but its taken me over a month to finally slog my way through to the end.

The protagonist is not very likable and makes so many stupid mistakes that you wonder how hes managed to survive even given the fact that the king would execute anyone who kills him unless he has ordered his death. The world building needs a lot of work, there are son many
2 stars, Metaphorosis Reviews

Michael Kingman is the son of a traitor, but also the descendant of a family that made the kingdom what it is. Trying to find a place in society, he stumbles onto a mystery that may explain much about his executed father.

I generally ignore blurbs, but every now and then, if it's from an author I like, one catches my attention. Sometimes, that's a mistake. I picked up Nick Martell's The Kingdom of Liars mostly for its interesting premise that magic costs
Nick Martell
Mar 05, 2020 is currently reading it  ·  (Review from the author)
First off, let me say right off the bat that Im biased. I wrote THE KINGDOM OF LIARS primarily during my last two years of college. I sold the novel in January 2018. And now, about two and half years later, the book will finally be available for everyone to read.

When I wrote THE KINGDOM OF LIARS, my goal was to tell the story of what would happen if a legendary family had a morally questionable child that crumbled under the pressure of emulating his ancestors. Because hasnt anyone ever wondered
Francisca Pinto
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalleyarcs
I recieved this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
And so sorry but I think this book is not for me.
My first and worst problem is I don't care what is happening with the characters, all the family problem is boring and the characters are boring and the problem is boring.... The Kingman family are in disgrace when David Kingman (the father), kill the little prince of the kingdom and then, he dies executed.
The Kingman family is threaten like traitors and Michael are trying with
Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, royalty
I enjoyed this book. The world-building was interesting and the narrator's story was engaging.

I liked that the world wasn't completely fleshed out because the main character didn't understand that much of it. He was completely confined to his city with no world view at all. The city he lived in also seemed incredibly isolationist. However, the main character also seemed to be stuck in a loop, with no real understanding of the city he lived it, which didn't really make sense, as we are told he
Feb 21, 2020 rated it it was ok
Shelves: age-adult

I thought the story itself was actually interesting, but I found this to just be boring. At least for me, it took a lot for me to actually care for anyone. The story felt so slow that it was almost dragging. Michael is an alright MC, but he definitely needs more fleshing out for me to actually feel anything for him. The side characters I can't even say anything about. In my opinion, the characters weren't catching my attention. Paired with the slowness of the book, I was really not a fan.
Claire Mac
Mar 31, 2020 marked it as to-read
arc provided in exchange for an honest review
Edward Cox
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Michael Kingman is a dangerous liar. He cant be trusted, you should not like him under any circumstances whatsoever, and he deserves his execution for high treason...doesnt he?

The Kingdom of Liars by Nick Martell is a roaringly good romp. The story is a little different, the world is full of intrigue and mystery, the characters are human and flawed, and the twists and turns are unpredictable. The book is out from Gollancz in May 2020, and its a debut everyone should watch out for. Marvellous
Mar 02, 2020 rated it liked it
"Were all selfish monstersthe only difference is some of us are more honest about it than others."

Synopsis: Michael Kingman is heir to a legacy of betrayal. After his father's appartent murder of the King's son, his once-powerful family are forced to live in disgrace and servitude. Ten years later, Michael is scraping by in the streets, moving from one con to the next like a common grifter. When an opportunity presents itself for him to rejoin the upper class and to clear his family's
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This is what Game of Thrones would look like, if it had a sense of an moral compass and heroism. This is what my intepretation of this fantastic novel is. It comes at a whopping 608 pages or so. This is what fantasy books should be in my opinion. I have seen a boy become a man by the end of this book. If I had to summarise it in one sentence, that describes everything that is for this book.

The details of distinguishing between the high and low nobles, the Ravens and the Fabricators, the
Anne Monteith
Mar 25, 2020 rated it it was ok
This is the authors debut novel and while the story shows great promise theres need for improvement. Since this was an ARC, I did not want to DNF, but its taken me over a month to finally slog my way through to the end.

The protagonist is not very likable and makes so many stupid mistakes that you wonder how hes managed to survive even given the fact that the king would execute anyone who kills him unless he has ordered his death. The world building needs a lot of work, there are son many
Jenna R
Mar 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
**I was provided an electronic ARC by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for honest review.**

Nick Martell's The Kingdom of Liars is a solid debut fantasy that is part murder mystery, part comedy of errors and all magic. Readers follow Michael Kingman, youngest son of a prince killer who wears the brand for his father's treason on his neck. Michael finds out that his father may not have been as guilty as it seems, and is dragged into deal after deal on his quest for the truth.

One thing
Rosie Rizk
Instead of killing the children of the man who killed his own son, quid pro quo, the king branded the traitor's kids, and tossed them out into a world that now hated the children of their fallen hero. Until the day his father was tried as a murderer, Michael grew up on stories of his family's great legacy of heroism. Years later, Michael hates his father for ruining their legacy, but still struggles to come to terms with his own place in a society that hates him for his father's deeds. When he ...more
Monika Dinesh
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
I rarely read fantasy, but I really liked the unique magic usage, and how magicians are called Fabricators. This fantasy novel is action-packed, thrilling, lot of characters (which seemed confusing in the beginning). The Kingdom of Liars is the first book in the "Legend of Mercenary King" series. The story took off slow, but it was interesting throughout. The ending was epic. Even though I guessed who would-be heroes and villains, I liked how they were magically revealed in the end. Very apt for ...more
Mar 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Michael Kingsman's father was found guilty of killing the prince when Michael was just a child and his life was never the same. Michael and his siblings are marked as traitors and attempt to find a way to accept their father's crimes and live their lives. This world is beautifully written and has a unique twist to the magic present - every time . you use a spell you risk losing memory - something small like what you had for breakfast or something bigger like your past, your family, or how to use ...more
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Nick Martell was born in Guelph, Ontario, where he lived for 7 years before moving to Huntington, New York. After elementary school, Nick went on to attend Long Island Lutheran Middle and High School. Nick started writing in 5th grade, beginning to explore the world that would fully emerge in The Kingdom of Liars.

After graduating from Long Island Lutheran High School, Nick attended Susquehanna

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