Guess what time it is, book bees? It’s time for THP to review another magical YA novel! And as we approach the release date for Legends and Liars by Morgan Rhodes, we can’t help but feel excited!
Morgan Rhodes’s Legends and Liars is the second book of the Echoes and Empires duology, and it rounds out the events of the first book beautifully. But we wouldn’t be opposed to another installment either! We could read about Joss and Jericho’s story indefinitely, and here are three reasons you should read it too!
Content Warnings: violence, death, murder, torture, gore, deceased parents (Read at your discretion!)
Summary: Josslyn Drake is in over her head—again. After fleeing the Queen’s palace with Prince Elian in tow, she’d hoped to finally find a way to solve both of their magical problems in one fell swoop, with the help of criminal-turned-ally Jericho Nox. But Valery, Jericho’s boss—and a notoriously powerful mage—has other plans.
It soon becomes clear that Valery can’t, or won’t, provide assistance. And with her relationship with Jericho more confusing than ever, Joss realizes that she’ll have to find her own way out of this magical mess, with or without help from those around her.
Amid high tensions, Joss sets out to learn to control the memory magic—along with her own natural powers. As the struggle between Lord Banyon and the Queen threatens the people Joss cares about, she stumbles onto hints of a monumental royal secret. Her unwanted power just might hold the answers she needs to solve all her problems—but she’ll have to work quickly, because the fate of an empire hangs in the balance.
Stellar Character Development
Our protagonist Josslyn has come a long way since the first book of the Echoes and Empires series. Joss is forced out of her comfort zone and luxurious bubble as the former First Daughter. Once she experiences the real world, her perspective flips from being convinced that all elementia (magic) is evil to learning how common and important magic really is. It becomes clear that nothing Queen Isadora says should be accepted blindly. And ultimately, Joss learns to control the unwanted memory magic from within her and even develops her own powers.
So Many Plot Twists
We love how the novel brings back almost all the characters from the first book, some of whom we forgot had a stake in the ongoing battle for the truth. And we get to explore the stories of several new characters in Legends and Liars, like Prince Elian, Lord Banyon, and Valery. Our main characters, Joss and Jericho, go through an entire rollercoaster of events in their attempts to expose secrets and exact revenge. There were multiple betrayals and “Gotcha!” moments throughout the novel, and we were not ready for them!
An Enjoyable Ending
Morgan Rhodes does a fantastic job of conflict resolution in Legends and Liars, even for the side characters’ endings. We fully understand their motives and perspectives, even if they took advantage of their positions. And we admit that it was difficult to predict how Joss would share the truth with the world and how Jericho would break Valery’s magical command over him. But the book ties up its loose ends and leaves us with a hopeful, open ending as the cast prepares for major reforms in the empire of Regara.
Legends and Liars is an incredible fantasy novel we sped through and finished within a day! The revelations had us audibly gasping, and we can always appreciate the sweet hints of romance between Joss and Jericho.
Legends and Liars by Morgan Rhodes is out June 13th and is available for preorder here!
Need to add to your summer reading list? Check out our recs!