This time, however, they have targeted the grandest prize of all: the Sinspire, the most exclusive and heavily guarded gambling house in the world. Its nine floors attract the wealthiest clientele - and to rise to the top, one must impress with good credit, amusing behavior...and excruciatingly impeccable play. For there is one cardinal rule, enforced by Requin, the house's cold-blooded master: it is death to cheat at any game at the Sinspire.Brazenly undeterred, Locke and Jean have orchestrated an elaborate plan to lie, trick, and swindle their way up the nine floors...straight to Requin's teeming vault. Under the cloak of false identities, they meticulously make their climb - until they are closer to the spoils than ever.
But someone in Tal Verrar has uncovered the duo's secret. Someone from their past who has every intention of making the impudent criminals pay for their sins. Now it will take every ounce of cunning to save their mercenary souls. And even that may not be enough.
©2008 Scott Lynch; (P)2009 Tantor
Audible has opened up a whole new world of reading that I could not make work in the traditional page turning world. I am on a mission to listen to a wide variety of adventures, mysteries, thrillers, classics, etc. Thank you Audible!
First of all Scott Lynch is an excellent story teller. I found both books to be among the best I have listened to. There is significantly strong language, but I found it fit with the characters and the story. The thing I liked best in this series is that the author did not waste the readers time reviewing the story of the first book. Too many authors spend too much time recapping the story line of the past book so people who did not read the first book can be caught up, but not Mr. Lynch. If you did not read the first book you will miss out on a lot and likely find yourself confused at times. Thank you for rewarding those who begin a series at the beginning and know the details. I agree with the other reviews in that the narration by Michael Page is superb and makes the story come to live. I highly recommend and will be anxiously waiting for the other books in the series to be released!
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I had barely finished the first book before I immediately downloaded the sequal, and while it was a good and entertaining listen, it sadly felt diminished by the awesome experience I had with its predecessor. This book is exciting and fun and written and narrated just as well as the first, but there was just something missing that made me love it a little less than the first. I dont know if it was because I missed all the childhood stories, or perhaps I just missed Chains, but I let this story languish a bit whereas with the first one I nearly ended up with my earbuds permanently fixed to my head. Its a good story, and its more of the same, though I have to admit it lost itself in the middle and dedicated a significant amount of time building up story that never seemed to really pan out, but all in all this was still a good listen, sadly, it just wasnt the first.
I have been a member on Audible for a very long time and this is the first review I have ever written.
RED SEAS UNDER RED SKIES has been one of the best books that I have listened to in years. I personally do not like the use of the "F" word, but in this piece and its predecessor I did not mind it so much. I have stopped reading other books for much less, but once I started THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA I could not stop until I listened to RED SEAS UNDER RED SKIES.
Do yourself a favor, listen to both books available in this series and see if I know what I am talking about.
Good writing has ... a balance and a rhythm. You can feel that much better when it's read aloud. --Laura Hillenbrand, author of Unbroken
Posted under "The Lies of Locke Lamora" and "Red Seas Under Red Skies" (Books 1 and 2 of "Gentleman Bastards").
There are so many good and accurate reviews of both these books, I hesitate to add my 2 cents, but am so enthusiastic about them--and about the imminent release (Fall 2013) of the third book in the series, "A Republic of Thieves"--that I decided to pony up.
The writing is exquisite. It requires concentration. Scott Lynch moves masterfully between characters and time frames. The con games the protagonists play are complicated but ultimately, weirdly believable. There are scenes of surpassing beauty and events of excruciating brutality. These are not books to lull yourself to sleep with (unless you want some real nightmare images floating around your brain).
The narration by Michael Page is first-class. I've listened to a couple of other books he's narrated and always thought he was good, but for these books, he really stepped it up. Writing this good deserves time and thought in the interpretation, and Page delivers. A match made in audio heaven.
"Lies" should be read before "Red Seas," but each is complete and satisfying in itself. This is a good thing, because there have been 5 years between "Red Seas" and the forthcoming volume. Lynch's website lists a proposed 7-volume arc for this series, and he's apparently filling in with some novellas (the first of which are scheduled for publication in winter 2014). I wish Scott Lynch the best. I look forward to a long stretch of enjoying his books, especially if he can maintain the incredibly high writing and plotting standards of the first two.
Thoroughly enjoyable, gritty adventure fantasy with a couple of hero rogues. The narrator does one of the best jobs of capturing the characters I have heard on Audible. Read the (equally good) prequel "The Lies of Locke Lamorra" first. Highly recommended!
Scott Lynch's debut novel, THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA, was a rollicking good read with an inventive world, great characters, and its share of poignant moments. Lynch has kept the momentum going strong in this follow-up, following the heroes to a brand new cityscape where new heists are hatched and intrigues plotted. The plot does sag a bit at times, but it's always redeemed by Lynch's powerful writing and witty dialogue.
Michael Page's narration captures the mood and characters perfectly. He makes you forget you're listening to a narration and opens a window directly onto Lynch's colorful world.
The second of The Gentleman Bastard series is just as cleverly written as the first! I am duly impressed. Lynch's treatment of the death of very close friends--friends more like brothers--in the first book was very fast-paced. You never really had the chance to see our heroes grieve. But in this book, you get that chance. The characters are still cocksure and invincible, but they've definitely grown through their adversities. The greatest appeal to me is the deep abiding friendship that men seem to be able to maintain in spite of each other. They share strengths and vulnerabilities and accept each other's frailties and faults while simultaneously ranting at each other for them. Yet, they remain true. It's an enviable trait to have that depth of loyalty for one's friends. The same narrator performs this reading, and once again is stupendous! Worth savoring every delicious moment!
Red Seas is an excellent continuation of the adventures of Locke & Co. However, Scott Lynch has a way of going back and forth in the timeline that takes some getting used to. In Lies of Locke... it was pretty obvious, not so much here. Once you get into the rythum, it all makes sense and well worth the effort. A very, very enjoyable listen! When's Book 3 coming out? I'm actually going to miss the Gentlemen Bastards.
This review's been a long time coming. I should have written it MUCH sooner. I have a litany of ridiculous excuses (I refer to them as viable reasons) that delayed writing this review.
So, let's get past that, and get to it.
If you would, please look at my review for Scott Lynch's "The Lies Of Locke Lamora," the first in The Gentleman Bastard Sequence. Not that I'm impressed with my own review; I simply want you to have a bit of background on this truly fantastic series by Lynch. Once done, please come back here, and we'll begin.
In "Red Seas Under Red Skies," Lynch carries the series into a uncharted waters (Pun intended) which begins with Locke and his gentlemen scoping out a gambling house of vast notoriety and presumably vast wealth, and eventually works its ways onto the open seas. I can't provide further info on the plot, or I come perilously close to ruining the surprises to come.
So, what can I tell you?
Once again, Lynch has a tremendously enjoyable second in the series, and it's wicked fun. The author wraps this huge fantasy world around you, drapes your shoulders in its heady embrace, and pulls you in.
As is the first in the series, it's extremely unusual, unexpected, witty, descriptive, both plot and character driven, and doesn't bog down. This is one time I wish I could elaborate, but doing so will give away too much. You want spoilers? Move along. I will NOT ruin the efforts by both the author and the narrator to breath life into this work by giving away any of the plot devices, nor the storyline to which it's attached. The descriptive compelling writing here is a love letter to anyone who longs for good writing in the genre. This is smart fantasy writing that has been penned superbly, tied together lovingly to create an truly stand-apart fantasy series that I plan to listen to again in the near future. Is there magic in this action fantasy writing. Yes, peppered throughout the audiobook, and hints at further and larger magics to come in Lynch's next Lamora adventure, "The Republic Of Thieves." If you've listened to "Lies," then you know exactly to whom I refer. Yes, they're back, and with a sinister ugly vengeance. And an agenda.
What? You DON"t know? Get "Lies," and you WILL.
With such great fantasy writing on the shelves here at Audible, this is truly is an exciting time for fantasy listeners.
So join Locke and the gentleman on the high seas. Put that hard-earned Audible credit to good use, and acquire this audiobook. When a sequel can almost outshine its fantastic predecessor, you're onto a good thing.
Here's to rough sailing!
I've been an Audie Awards judge since 2008. I have enjoyed audiobooks since the days when they were called "Books on Tape".
Great story again (Lies of Locke Lamora is the first book). In this story, there's a two year plan to rob a casino and knock off an emperor... The machiavellian machinations will make your head spin. It's a Robin Hood and Little John in a world of Sheriff of Knottinghams - done in a "Dirty Rotten Scoundels" style of chikenery with plenty of intercharacter banter that is the evidence of a good writer. Nobody could have narrated this story better than Michael Page. He's fantastic. The story sounds like it's narrated in a bathroom, but you get used to it. Great story... Great Narration. I can't wait to see what happens in book 3 (I hope there's a book 3).
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