Blog Tour: The Knave of Secrets, Alex Livingston

Book Review: The Knave of Secrets, Alex Livingston


The Knave of Secrets

Fantasy: The Knave of Secrets, Alex Livingston


Knave of Secrets, Alex Livingston

Blot Tour May 8, 2022


Valen loves nothing more than a game of chance. Sitting down in a tavern or club with strangers, engaging in a harmless game of cards or dice, not knowing who is going to win.




Valen is a professional gambler with a pair of colleagues who run cons on victims with more dollars than sense. A little magic, a little card-marking, a little sleight of hand, a little distraction, and a lot of running away from angry losers. It’s not an easy life, or a safe life, or a lucrative life, or…well, there’s a lot of things that it’s not. What it is, though, is the life they’ve chosen and they are determined to make a go of it.


Still, the biggest game around is one they’ve been frozen out of. Only very high rollers get into this game, genteel folk with plenty of money to lose. More importantly, though, when money runs low, the stakes get higher. This game is played for secrets.


A local gang leader knows of Valen’s skills and proposes a deal. He will get Valen into the game, and Valen will focus on one player in particular, a player who has a secret worth…everything. Of course Valen could refuse. The gang leader would then cut his fingers off and make it impossible for him to play cards ever again. Given this opportunity to play the game (and keep his fingers), Valen agrees. He plays the game, gets the secret, and leaves.


Some secrets, though, are worth killing for.


Knave of Secrets is about a knave, Valen, and his “knavel” partners (which include his wife, the best card-marker and dice-shaver in the world). It is about the secret they learn, a secret which thieves and magicians, politicians and spies, would happily kill to acquire. It is an adventure, full of magic and danger and I’d be willing to bet it will be one of my favorite books this year.


Alex Livingston has created an interesting fantasy world with magic and technology being equally dangerous in their own right. Enchanted glasses help an ordinary dilettante become an extraordinary long-range shot. Angry magicians set a street on fire. Valen’s partner can heal others but at a price: he has to eat a live rat to activate the magic.


That might be a talent I would just as soon not develop.


This book is fun, quick paced, and unpredictable. The knaves are lovable, the nobles are not, the magicians have major issues, and the stakes get higher and higher. When you’re playing with your lives, you need all the help you can get.


Alex Livingston, Author
Alex Livingston, Author

The Knave of Secrets

Our thanks to  The Write Reads Blog Tours for our copy of The Knave of Secrests, given so we could participate in this book tour. The opinions here are solely those of Scintilla. For other perspectives, check out the other bloggers on this tour.


The Knave of Secrets

Book Review: The Knave of Secrets, Alex Livingston

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