Thank you to Astrid Scholte and her agent for the opportunity to receive an ARC to write a League of Liars review.
League of Liars is about a boy named Cayder whose mother died as a result of edem usage, that is extradimensional magic. The use of edem is outlawed could most likely lead to imprisonment.
Cayder wants to be a prosecutor so he can put people, like the man who killed his mother, behind bars. But he takes a summer internship with a defense attorney so that he can learn the tactics of the opposition.
Everything is going well until he meets his first clients and begins to learn that the legal system he’d once trusted could no longer be relied upon to provide truth and justice. Cayder begins to realize that a jailbreak may be the only way to save the innocent.
League of Liars Review
Let me start by saying I absolutely adore this concept. When I first read it, it immediately intrigued me. A fantasy legal thriller? Sign me up!
I’ve obsessively watch crime shows and legal shows. Lately it’s been Bull, which is coming to an end sadly, but League of Liars appeared at just the right time to scratch the itch of more courtroom drama.
From the very first chapter, Astrid Scholte had me hooked. The magic system in League of Liars is unlike anything else I’ve ever encountered: time-manipulating shadows that echo the Once Upon A Time mantra of “All magic comes with a price.”
Couple that with a main character who wants to put criminals behind bars but takes a job as a defense attorney’s assistant just so he can learn from the enemy, it sounds amazing.
The story mostly delivered on the premise, but sometimes struggled to hold my attention in the earlier moments of the book. Right around the middle is where it started to get good and it does scratch that courtroom drama itch I had.
But then toward the end, it almost felt rushed. Like there was a looming word count that had to be kept or like it hadn’t simply be fleshed out all that well. It does sound like Astrid Scholte has plans for a second book, but nothing is official. As far as the publisher is concerned, this is a standalone for the time being.
Normally in this situation, the story would wrap-up but leave more as an option. And while League of Liars “sort of” does this, there is still more of a drop off than I think most readers will prefer.
Regardless, I really enjoyed the story, am glad I read it, and would definitely read the next book if and when it releases.
League of Liars Characters
Aside from our main character, Cayder, there are three other POV characters in the story. There’s Jey, Leta, and Elenora. Aside from Jey, the personalities of the different characters all seemed to blend together to me.
I had actually forgotten the name of the latter two characters and had to look them up for my review. Despite their perhaps cookie cutter personality, the events that place around them are fascinating. There’s loads of mystery on what exactly caused these three individuals to end up prison.
And despite their desire to set free, none of the prisoners is willing to share the whole story with their defense attorneys for a variety of believable reasons. You’re strung along throughout the whole book wondering what the real story is, and it’s exciting.
I would say these mysterious events are really what kept me turning the page. The world and everything about it was what was fascinating.
The characters themselves are easily forgettable, but the worldbuilding is where League of Liars really shines.
These days it’s difficult to find a fantasy story that is unique and fresh. Astrid Scholte’s genre mash-ups are fantastic for breaking up the monotony of the fantasy formula.
If you enjoyed my League of Liars review, check out my review of Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim.