Under his tutelage, Locke grows to lead the Bastards, delightedly pulling off one outrageous confidence game after another. Soon he is infamous as the Thorn of Camorr, and no wealthy noble is safe from his sting. Passing themselves off as petty thieves, the brilliant Locke and his tightly knit band of light-fingered brothers have fooled even the criminal underworld's most feared ruler, Capa Barsavi. But there is someone in the shadows more powerful---and more ambitious---than Locke has yet imagined. Known as the Gray King, he is slowly killing Capa Barsavi's most trusted men---and using Locke as a pawn in his plot to take control of Camorr's underworld.
With a bloody coup under way threatening to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the Gray King at his own brutal game---or die trying.
©2008 Scott Lynch; (P)2009 Tantor
"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." (Booklist)
I'm the managing editor of the Fantasy Literature blog. Life's too short to read bad books!
Scott Lynch has created a unique and fascinating world full of wonderful creations such as a crime boss who rules his empire from a houseboat, his little daughter who sits on his lap drinking ale and kicking subordinates with her steel-toed boots, a blind priest who begs for alms and eats gourmet meals off fine plates in his luxurious cellar, noblemen who live in glowing glass towers, a blood-sucking rose garden, alcoholic oranges, and women who fight jumping man-eating sharks for sport. This is truly entertaining stuff!
To me it is like ocean eleven in a different era which is an entertaining concept in itself. The con and lies are funny as well as entertaining and they are delivered by narrator in a way that will make readers laugh. Where, at the same time, the realities of crime and punishment will make reader will feel for the characters. There is supernatural aspect as well in the book, but it is subtle and powerful which make things really interesting. This is Scott???s first book, and I hope he continue to deliver in this fashion. I enjoyed this book so much that I ended up listening to it several times. It is sharp, witty and at times surprisingly dark book. Michael Page is just right for this type of book. To me he Michael has just the right range and tone for this type of book. I hope that someday this book inspire a big screen movie.
The story of thieves builds over time to create a vivid setting and lovable characters. The narrator is also top notch giving life to the book.
This is an amazing read for any fantasy fan.
I must warn you now. If you buy this audiobook, you will end up buying all three in the series. I first read this series in October and immediately fell in love. Having had so much fun reading the adventures of the Gentlemen Bastards, I was a bit hesitant about buying the audible version. Little did I know, that this series was born to be told by none other than Michael Page. He brings a new life to every character, and his accent adds to the humor and richness this series deserves. Unlike many fantasy books, you will find yourself hooked right from the beginning, and then wonder how on earth you are already almost done with the third book.
The story takes place in a thieving city called Camorr, which in a sense is sort of like a medieval Venice. Though that sounds sort of historical, this world is very unique, and Scott Lynch adds a lot of culture, history, and mythology that makes the world completely its own. Once you begin the book, it will introduce the protagonist of the story, Locke Lamora. What a cool name, right? Then once the story gets going it begins to alternate between the upbringing and training of Locke, to the present, which is the current ingenious con of the Gentlemen Bastards.
Buy this audiobook now, and it will quickly work its way into your favorites.
This is far and away the most enjoyable audiobook I've encountered. The narrator is simply amazing, and absolutely perfect for this book. When he speaks, I can fully imagine every detail. When he switches characters, I can picture their faces. The story of the Gentlemen Bastards is a fantastic, fun, gritty, and compelling. The Gentlemen Bastards are the Ocean's 11 of Mr. Lynch's fantasy world.The language is harsh, witty, and real. Not recommended for the overly pious or easily offended.
I ultimately gave this three stars because I would recommend it, but with a warning. Scott Lynch gets extremely embroiled in his plot, and while that is for the most part enjoyable, there were times when it was tiresome and unbelievable and I needed a break from the effort of listening and trying to care. I liked the overarching story and Locke's character, and I'm sure the second and third books are worth listening to, but I probably won't be using any of my credits on them anytime soon.
DO NOT, pay any attention to the people who don't even read the book and then pan it.
Give me a break!!
And, yes there is a lot of cursing. THEY ARE THIEVES and murders, for God's sake! If you don't like cursing, don't read the book, but don't pan it because you don't like cursing.
This book is special, the characters are rich, complex, and oh so human. There is profound brotherly love, commitment, desire, and hate all wrapped in a beautiful story that rivals anything out there.
Kudos to Scott Lynch!
I can't wait for Red Seas Under Red Skies to come out on audiobook.
Somewhere in chapter ten, I just couldn't take any more. I lost all sympathy for the protagonist.
Coning people into trusting you, and then robbing them is not morally grey. It's black.
The only thing that kept pulling me along was curiosity about the main characters background, until I hit the point that I was fine with a Google search for spoilers.
I'm not wasting any more of my life on this.
This book is pretty high up on a lot of lists for fantasy books, but I was underwhelmed honestly. It's not that there was anything bad or poorly written, but the story wasn't terribly unique or particularly interesting. It's basically an "Ocean's Eleven" sort of plot line with some "Godfather" style gang rivalry and violence placed in a medieval setting. Many of the things that were probably supposed to be big surprises in the story were pretty obvious before they were officially "revealed" to the reader (at least to me).
Also, there isn't really anything that would force this to be a "fantasy" novel- the elements that are thrown in (elderglass and bondmage and such things) feel more like simple medieval replacements for technology based plot devices- they didn't feel well thought through or essential. So some of the cities are made of an otherworldly material- you can take that away from the story and not loose a single thing. Throwing a few fantastical items into the story that have no real relevance to anything actually going on (or that couldn't just as easily be replaced with something else) does not a good "fantasy" novel make, IMHO.
Still, the characters are well written, the voice acting & reading by Michael Page is top notch, and it is not a bad story- I happen to like the Ocean's movies. There are just a lot of other books that felt more interesting to me than this one.
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