Magic for Liars

A Novel

Formats and Prices


Trade Paperback


Trade Paperback

This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around May 5, 2020. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.


Sharp, mainstream fantasy meets compelling thrills of investigative noir in Magic for Liars, a fantasy debut by rising star Sarah Gailey.

Ivy Gamble was born without magic and never wanted it.

Ivy Gamble is perfectly happy with her life – or at least, she’s perfectly fine.

She doesn’t in any way wish she was like Tabitha, her estranged, gifted twin sister.

Ivy Gamble is a liar.

When a gruesome murder is discovered at The Osthorne Academy of Young Mages, where her estranged twin sister teaches Theoretical Magic, reluctant detective Ivy Gamble is pulled into the world of untold power and dangerous secrets. She will have to find a murderer and reclaim her sister–without losing herself.

“An unmissable debut.”–Adrienne Celt, author of Invitation to a Bonfire



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Chapter Two


Chapter Three


Chapter Four


Chapter Five


Chapter Six


Chapter Seven


Chapter Eight


Chapter Nine


Chapter Ten


Chapter Eleven


Chapter Twelve


Chapter Thirteen


Chapter Fourteen


Chapter Fifteen


Chapter Sixteen


Chapter Seventeen


Chapter Eighteen


Chapter Nineteen


Chapter Twenty


Chapter Twenty-One


Chapter Twenty-Two


Chapter Twenty-Three


Chapter Twenty-Four


Chapter Twenty-Five


Chapter Twenty-Six


Chapter Twenty-Seven





To DongWon Song, my agent and friend, who knew I could do this, and who I would follow to the bottom of the sea;

To Miriam Weinberg, my editor, whose brilliance astonishes me, and who I can trust to ask me for more until there’s no more left to demand;

To my critique and thought partners, Sarah Hollowell and Sharon Hsu, without whom my soul and brain can’t function;

To Mom and Dad and Rachel and Katie and Scott and Mathew and Becca and Amy;

To Ryan and Christina, who hold my heart together;

To Jonathan, who has known every good version of me and some of the bad ones;

To Meg, who paints the sky and makes my brain go quiet;

To Dominik, who can see the person I’m becoming and who doesn’t let me hide from the truth;

To Minerva and Aaron, for being kind and for loving my dogs;

To every iteration of the cabin retreat crew—Mark Oshiro, Camden Tayler, Jeeyon Shim, Stacey Matthews, Adam Winn, and of course, our neighbor Dick;

To my early readers, including Hilary Bisenieks, Kate Lechler, Mara Hampson, Sarah Hollowell, Ashley Stauber, Sharon Hsu, Angela Hines, Matt White, Aidan Moher, JY Yang, and Ace Tilton Ratcliff;

To Sarah Williamson, for walking me through the way things work;

To my queer community, for finding me when I so desperately needed you, and for loving me as I find my way;

To the MurderFriends, to the coven, to PQ, to the group text;

To Team DongWon—we’re taking over the world, and I’m so lucky to be along for the ride with all of you;

To Hank and Pepper Jack, who are best friends with each other first, and who loved me even when I postponed walks to finish revisions;

To everyone who helped me get through the chapter of my life when everything changed, including the entirety of this book—to everyone who helped me pack, who took me in, who put me up, who watched me cry, who kept me safe, who bought me drinks, who believed me and gave me the gift of patience while I tried (and sometimes failed) to keep it together;

To everyone who has ever loved any of the versions of me that I’ve been;

To those versions of me, who were growing and searching and scared and brave:

Thank you.

On Sale
May 5, 2020
Page Count
352 pages