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Play of Shadows

ebook / ISBN-13: 9781787471443

Price: £18.99

ON SALE: 28th March 2024

Genre: Fiction & Related Items / Fantasy

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Swordplay, magic, intrigue and friendships stronger than iron: the first volume in the new swashbuckling fantasy series set in the universe of THE GREATCOATS.

Damelas Chademantaigne picked a poor night to flee a judicial duel.

He has precious little hope of escaping the wrath of the Vixen, the most feared duellist in the entire city, until he stumbles through the stage doors of the magnificent Operato Belleza and tricks his way into the company of actors. An archaic law provides a temporary respite from his troubles – until one night a ghostly voice in his head causes Damelas to fumble his lines, inadvertently blurting out a dreadful truth: the city’s most legendary hero may actually be a traitor and a brutal murderer.

With only the help of his boisterous and lusty friend Bereto, a beautiful assassin whose target may well be Damelas himself, and a company of misfit actors who’d just as soon see him dead, this failed grandson of two Greatcoats must somehow find within himself the courage to dig up long-buried truths before a ruthless band of bravos known as the Iron Orchids come for his head.

Oh, and there’s still that matter of the Vixen waiting to duel him . . .

Readers love Play of Shadows!

‘De Castell’s masterful writing weaves an impressive tale with a fantastic plot, intriguing characters, and wondrous storybuilding. Another masterpiece’ – 5* reader review

‘If you are looking for a swashbuckling adventure with a dash of romance and a leaven of humour, then go out and get a copy of this book’ – 5* reader review

‘Everything that you come to expect from a Greatcoats world book – swashbuckling, emotional rollercoaster, a hero to root for and a great cast of characters some you will love and some you will hate’ – 5* reader review

What's Inside

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Reviews

These books are just joyous . . .This is first-rate fiction, first rate adventure, first rate full stop
CONN IGGULDEN on THE GREATCOATS
Fantastic from the first sentence to the last. Combining old-school swashbuckling action with contemporary characters and a good dose of grit, these books are the rarest of things, great rollicking fun combined with an emotional punch . . . Sebastien, write faster!
JOHN GWYNNE, Author of the Faithful and the Fallen on The Greatcoats series
Guaranteed to increase household swashbuckling by 100%
Library Journal on Traitor’s Blade
These are not the kinds of books you forget. They are the kind you remember and recommend
Ageless Pages
Highly recommended, as is the GREATCOATS series as a whole
Fantasy Literature
The Greatcoats is now up there on my list of favourite fantasy series
Bibliosanctum
A page-turner in the true sense of the phrase . . . Witty, romantic and atmospheric in the way of great adventure stories
British Fantasy Society on the Greatcoats series
A bunch of fun from one cover to the other
Tor.com on Traitor's Blade
Don't hesitate to buy this if you love a great hero and story . . . What a voice! What story-telling brio! If you love Dumas, or Game of Thrones or The False Prince this is the swashbuckling fantasy for you
AMANDA CRAIG, author of Hearts And Minds
Traitor's Blade provides swashbuckling fan service, and has fun along the way, but it also packs a sneaky emotional punch as well. Dumas would be proud
Pornokitsch
The Three Musketeers meets Game of Thrones, Traitor's Blade is the most delightful fun . . . [should] be high up on anyone's list
smorgasbord
An absolute stunner that you can't afford to miss
The Founding Fields on Traitor’s Blade
I want to join the Greatcoats!
Parmenionbooks
Every so often, a debut novel comes along that knocks your expectations out of the park. Scott Lynch's The Lies of Locke Lamora is one of those novels. Peter V. Brett's The Painted Man is another. Sebastien de Castell's Traitor's Blade needs to be added to that list. I loved this
Civilian Reader
If you love underdog characters, strong women, plenty of humour, wit and action, I can't recommend this enough. Fans of the Greatcoats will love it, and I think people coming to this world for the first time will find it a great introduction
Becky's Book Blog
A fast-paced joy-ride from start to finish, filled to the brim with swashbuckling action
FanFiAddict on PLAY OF SHADOWS
The twists and turns of a story where theater genuinely is magic had me turning pages perhaps a little faster than I should have - but it was such a thrill to encounter sophisticated world-building mingled with nerve-wracking adventure and truly satisfying swordplay. De Castell's women are genuinely witty and intelligent, as well as hot as blazes . . . and I'm a sucker for any story with truth and friendship at its heart. Bravo, maestro! I eagerly await the next one
Ellen Kushner, author of SWORDSPOINT