Rating: 4.25 stars out of 5
Sebastian Orwell did the only thing a smart wizard could do when he stumbled upon the wounded Crown Prince: he healed him and dumped him in a tavern where he could continue not being Sebastian’s problem. Unfortunately, the prince isn’t content with just being alive, and he hunts Sebastian down to thank him personally. Not only is Sebastian stuck with the prince’s unwanted affections, he’s also confronted by growing evidence linking the assassination attempt to someone from his father’s past.
Lord Orwell is a lot of things: thief, liar, drunk, and all around horrible father, but Sebastian knows he’s no murderer. In order to prove it, Sebastian has to keep the prince alive long enough to discover the truth—a task made considerably harder because the idiot prince prefers wooing Sebastian over securing his own survival. On top of everything, Sebastian needs to save the day without revealing his magical powers and the real reason he hides his appearance. Sebastian had no intention of playing the hero, but whoever is stirring up shit in his country will pay for destroying his quiet life.
Family of Lies: Sebastian by Sam Argent was really great! A well done debut book. I couldn’t find a lot about this “new to me” author. I suppose Family of Lies: Sebastian is his/her first published work. To me it was love at first sight with the cover but the plot is good too, with a great development of the story and a lot of funny moments. I can’t believe how I found myself caught in the story untill the end.
Sebastian is the younger (and smarter) son of Lord Orwell, a not so good father of a big and messy family. He wears a strong magical cloak, an enchanted item that hides him totally. Sebastian is arrogant, mysterious, with no tact at all, stubborn and smartass. He annoys everyone, but everyone loves him. He is the lead character, everything and everyone revolves around him and his mysterious ability.
Turren, Prince of Larnlyon, has been in love with Sebastian since forever, even before he burned the first edition of a book very precious to Sebastian, becoming hated by him. He’s determined to woo Sebastian in every way he can, following him around and forcing him to save the Prince more than once.
The book is set in a magical world, of which (sadly) we know very less about. This is the only negative note I can talk of. It’s high fantasy but when I was expecting some explanation on how it works or on the various breeds we meet, I got almost nothing. It was hard at the beginning but I tried to just follow Sebastian in his (dis)adventures and I can assure you the story flowed amazingly good.
There is a HUGE cast, a lot of people considering Sebastian’s family and all the royal members plus the various guards and wizards. Of course they weren’t well defined and in this case I appreciated. It was confusing at the start but as soon as I started to get familiar with them, then it was okay. I’m pretty sure it would have been almost impossible for me to know a little more about each of them and the lack of characters’ description helped me to focus more on Turren and Sebastian. Especially because there is a plot to follow, intrigues and mysteries to solve, wizards to defeat and two young men waiting for their HEA.
Most of all this story is a funny reading, almost real in the banter between all the Orwell family. They brawled at each other in the same way we do with our parents or brothers/sisters everyday. Dysfunctional and crazy and mouthy as mine.
You can’t miss this book if you are a fan of the fantasy genre, you won’t be disappointed. But I’m going to recommend to everyone who wants to read a well written and funny story. I am very happy to have discovered this new author. I can’t wait to read more about Sam Argent, maybe more of these amazing characters I met in Family of Lies: Sebastian. So… next book on Kevin and Luke? Please?
Cover art by Anne Cain. I’m in love with this cover. It is so magical and mysterious and it sparkle!! I couldn’t resist it.
Published March 18th 2015 by Dreamspinner Press
ebook, 324 pages
Edition language English