24 January 2012

Liar’s Moon by Elizabeth C. Bunce


Prisons, poisons, and passions combine in a gorgeously written fantasy noir. As a pickpocket, Digger expects to spend a night in jail every now and then. But she doesn't expect to find Lord Durrel Decath there as well--or to hear he's soon to be executed for killing his wife. Durrel once saved Digger's life, and when she goes free, she decides to use her skills as a thief, forger, and spy to return the favor. But each new clue only opens up new mysteries. Durrel's late wife had an illegal business on the wrong side of the civil war raging just outside the city gates. Digger keeps finding forbidden magic in places it has no reason to be. And for a thief in a town full of liars, sometimes it doesn't pay to know the truth.
Once again we are back with Digger, and her life keeps getting more and more interesting. Having left the Decath family she’s back in the capitol city surviving, stealing, and watching. As she spies on the city more and more bad things happen to her, and she once again entangles herself with the Decaths as Durrell is arrested for killing his wife and he asks Digger to prove his innocence. Thus begins a tale of adventure and intrigue that Digger has to unveil and put together. Although this book has a classic who-done-it plot, it doesn’t read as much like a mystery as Starcrossed did. Instead, Liar’s Moon seems a lot more like traditional medieval fantasy, with its Kings and Queens and plots against the throne and sorcerers and magic users who are fought by a populace afraid of magic and what it can do to them. Although she became a pretty solid figure in Starcrossed Digger develops more in this book, from a household maid figuring things out for her family to a full-on spy working alone to help her friend and her country. The sub-plot of magic users being reviled, condemned, and even murdered gives the non-magic users a little more power, and Digger exploits all of them to find out who the real murderer is. I can’t tell you much more of the plot without spoiling it, but suffice it to say that it will keep you reading the book long after you meant to stop for the day. I love how engrossing Bunce’s work can be, and I look forward to another Digger story soon because there are still many things left unexplained in Digger’s world, and plenty more trouble for Digger to get thrust into :D

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