Lies of Locke Lamora Paperback – Feb 1 2007
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From Publishers Weekly
Life imitates art and art scams life in Lynch's debut, a picaresque fantasy that chronicles the career of Locke Lamora—orphan, thief and leader of the Gentlemen Bastards—from the time the Thiefmaker sells Locke to the faking Eyeless Priest up to Locke's latest con of the nobility of the land of Camorr. As in any good caper novel, the plot is littered with obvious and not-so-obvious obstacles, including the secret police of Camorr's legendary Spider and the mysterious assassinations of gang leaders by the newly arrived Gray King. Locke's resilience and wit give the book the tragicomic air of a traditional picaresque, rubbery ethics and all. The villain holds the best moral justification of any of the players. Lynch provides plenty of historical and cultural information reminiscent of new weirdists Steven Erikson and China Miéville, if not quite as outré. The only drawback is that the realistic fullness of the background tends to accentuate the unreality of the melodramatic foreground. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
*Starred Review* On a distant world, orphan Locke Lamora is sold into a crew of thieves and con artists. Soon his natural gifts make him an underworld celebrity, leader of the flamboyantly larcenous Gentleman Bandits. But there is someone who covets Locke's talents, his success, his very life, forcing him to put everything on the line to protect himself. With a world so vividly realized that it's positively tactile, and characters so richly drawn that they threaten to walk right off the page, this is one of those novels that reaches out and grabs readers, pulling us into the middle of the action. With this debut novel, Lynch immediately establishes himself as a gifted and fearless storyteller, unafraid of comparisons to Silverberg and Jordan, not to mention David Liss and even Dickens (the parallels to Oliver Twist offer an appealing extra dimension to the story, although the novel is no mere reimagining of that Victorian classic). Fans of lavishly appointed fantasy will be in seventh heaven here, but it will be nearly as popular with readers of literary crime fiction. This is a true genre bender, at home on almost any kind of fiction shelf. Expect it to be among the year's most impressive debuts. David Pitt
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
One of the charms of this book is the way in which Lynch tells the story; this is anything but a straight forward narrative. Throughout the "main plot" we are told intermittently about the history of Locke Lamora, his admittance into the criminal organization known as "The Gentlemen Bastards", and his training in the art of theft. Each of the characters presented is beautifully fleshed out, with their own histories, agendas and motivations, making for a believable and engrossing novel.
If you're a fan of grittier fantasy - gods, thieves, plot and intrigue, and (of course) fantastic story telling - then this is the novel for you.
The world created by the author is inspired by Italian city-states of the late Middle-Age. If it was not of the involvement of a mage, this novel could have easily been categorized as a fiction instead of a fantasy novel. This book can be read as a stand alone novel, and its story follows a single storyline.
The main character, Locke Lamora, is a con artist. The story focuses on the cleverness of Lamora and his ability to conceive bold plans and to improvise his way out of trouble. What is really interesting is that the reader is not left in the black with regard to Lamora's plans and motivations. As such, as a reader you feel like you are being part of his plans instead of only being a spectator of their outcome.
I however find that the ending was rather disappointing. This book shines because of the personality of its characters, and the events in the end are triggered by actions that were rather out of character (this is especially true for the mage mentioned above, but also for Lamora). Despite the ending, this novel is an 'absolute must read' for its entertainment value, and as such I give it five stars.
There are these bad guys and yet you are on their side. The bad guys who are the good guys. The 'Gentleman Bastards'. A team of thieves you root for. And their victims who rather deserve to be preyed upon; this upper crust whose fortunes were made by 'taking' in the past and maintained by taking even more; if they are so ready to give away their gold, can you blame a guy for taking it? Then... there are some other 'bad guys' (or are they good guys) with their own agenda.
I enjoyed reading this book. I often felt fully involved in the book, like watching a movie, and wondering how this seat of the pants plan could possibly go right or this well planned plan be unraveled by one misstep. You feel the bumps and cuts, the frustrations, the friendship of the team, as very good story telling engages you with the characters. I recommend the book and I myself am going to pick up the next book to read the Lie Lock Lamora has to tell.
I say this to prepare you because after that it becomes amazing. Many other reviews compare it to Ocean's Eleven and The Godfather. I totally agree that there are many similarities but this is so much more than those stories. The intricacies of the plot are incredible. Lynch must have spent a year just planning the story out before he wrote it.
This is the story of Locke Lamora, or at least it's the story of his best scheme so far, except fate throws a few wrenches into the works (which didn't happen in Ocean's Eleven). Locke is a thief with a gang known as the Gentlemen Bastards, in a town full of gangs who are ultimately overseen by the Capa. He doesn't directly control the gangs in what they do but they have to pay a percentage of their take and follow his rules to be able to stay. He's the "Godfather". The story stops in several places to flashback (they are all titled Interlude) to Locke's youth and how he got to where he is now.
It was very entertaining (after the aforementioned first quarter) and I would highly recommend it.
Most recent customer reviews
Wonderful story easy to get lost in...a steampunk DickensPublished 2 months ago by Suzanne Lazinsky
I'd like that it was well written. It was also a bit surprising at times. Generally a really good book.Published 3 months ago by Dreaaa
A "ripping good yarn" as the Brits might say. Very good writing in craft, imagination, wit and use of language. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Greg Yarrow
This was a super fun read. Not your typical 'fantasy' novel but witty and fast-paced - full of heists, trickery, thievery and clever plot-twists. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
I like the story and I like the world that Lynch begins to create with his first book in this series. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Brendan
Sharp, fresh, outright fun and funny, the late discovery of the Lynch's universe is a blessing for me. Thanks!Published 11 months ago by Catherine Martel