Sam Hawke is Winner of the 2018 Aurealis Award for Best Fantasy Novel, the 2018 Ditmar Award for Best Novel and the 2018 Norma K Hemming Award (for works exploring issues of gender, disability, race or class) for City of Lies, the first in the Poison War series.
There’s an interesting discussion with Sam on tor.com, where she answers reader’s questions:
I guess a closed room murder mystery setup wasn’t that common in fantasy, so that’s probably the most distinguishable thing about the structure of the story.
Or possibly just messing with the all-too-common Western nuclear family model as the foundational family structure of the society—once you take out marriage as a concept and give primacy to other kinds of non-romantic relationships, what happens? (This is something that you don’t see as often as I’d like in speculative genres. We can imagine the most amazing magical things, but absolutely we must pair off and have strict gender roles etc. There are certain assumptions we carry across from our everyday lives unthinkingly which I’d like to see challenged more often).
— from Highlights from Sam Hawke’s AMA! on tor.com