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The Lies of Locke Lamora

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The Lies of Locke Lamora Cover

ISBN13: 9780553588941
ISBN10: 055358894x
Condition: Standard
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Staff Pick

Scads of witty dialogue, a story packed full of twists and turns, and two of the cheekiest thieves you'll ever meet... What more could a reader ask for? The Lies of Locke Lamora is the first book in the Gentleman Bastard series, and the two books that follow are equally entertaining. Scott Lynch weaves an absorbing tale that will whisk you right out of this world and keep you thoroughly entertained.
Recommended by Mary Jo, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this stunning debut, author Scott Lynch delivers the wonderfully thrilling tale of an audacious criminal and his band of confidence tricksters. Set in a fantastic city pulsing with the lives of decadent nobles and daring thieves, here is a story of adventure, loyalty, and survival that is one part Robin Hood, one part Ocean’s Eleven, and entirely enthralling.…

An orphan’s life is harsh — and often short — in the island city of Camorr, built on the ruins of a mysterious alien race. But born with a quick wit and a gift for thieving, Locke Lamora has dodged both death and slavery, only to fall into the hands of an eyeless priest known as Chains — a man who is neither blind nor a priest. A con artist of extraordinary talent, Chains passes his skills on to his carefully selected “family” of orphans — a group known as the Gentlemen Bastards. 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.…

Review:

"Locke's resilience and wit give the book the tragicomic air of a traditional picaresque, rubbery ethics and all." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser would have felt right at home with the Gentleman Bastards. They're not out to save the world, just their own skins...oh, and to relieve some nobles of their gold, jewels, and silks along the way. This is a fresh, original, and engrossing tale by a bright new voice in the fantasy genre. Locke Lamora makes for an engaging rogue, and Camorr a fascinating and gorgeously realized setting, a city to rival Lankhmar, Amber, and Viriconium. I look forward to returning there for many more visits." George R. R. Martin

Review:

"Scott Lynch is a con man, a conjuror, a wickedly entertaining juggler of words with knives up his sleeves and hatchets down his back. By the time you realize he's dangerous, you're already bleeding. The Lies of Locke Lamora is a ticket inside the astonishing city-state Camorr, and a free pass into the company of the entirely extraordinary Gentleman Bastards, and a match for any fantasy adventure I've ever read. The best news is: it's Book One. That means there'll be more." Matthew Woodring Stover

Review:

"Among the year's most impressive debuts...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. Fans of lavishly appointed fantasy will be in seventh heaven here, but it will be nearly as popular with readers of literary crime fiction." Booklist (starred review)

Review:

“Remarkable....Scott Lynch’s first novel, The Lies of Locke Lamora, exports the suspense and wit of a cleverly constructed crime caper into an exotic realm of fantasy, and the result is engagingly entertaining.” The Times (London)

Synopsis:

An orphan’s life is harsh — and often short — in the mysterious island city of Camorr. But young Locke Lamora dodges death and slavery, becoming a thief under the tutelage of a gifted con artist. As leader of the band of light-fingered brothers known as the Gentleman Bastards, Locke is soon infamous, fooling even the underworld’s most feared ruler. But in the shadows lurks someone still more ambitious and deadly. Faced with a bloody coup that threatens to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the enemy at his own brutal game — or die trying.

About the Author

Scott Lynch was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1978 and currently lives in Wisconsin with his fiancee and a small menagerie of household critters. He moonlights as a game designer and volunteer firefighter. This is his first novel.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 6 comments:

Amy Wachsmuth, April 16, 2014 (view all comments by Amy Wachsmuth)
If I were to do a one word review for this book it would be: Badass.

Feel free to stop reading now, the rest of this review is basically fluff, but since I have a particular fondness for writing fluffy book reviews I will proceed.

Oh good, you decided to come along.

Synopsis:
Locke Lamora is the leader of a gang of thieves dubbed the Gentleman Bastards. This group of orphaned young men were educated and trained to become masterful thieves by a man called Father Chains. Chains was the Eyeless Priest of Perelandro, the thirteenth of the twelve gods, Lord of the Overlooked. Father Chains was not eyeless.

The city of Camorr was built upon the Elderglass ruins of an alien race, interlaced with canals infested with wolf sharks and other niceties from the Iron Sea. Duke Nicovante reigned over the nobility and lawful citizens, and Capa Vencarlo Barsavi reigned over the lawless. A Secret Peace existed between these two men, the nobility were to be left untouched and Capa Barsavi would be left to manage his gangs--which he did--ruthlessly.

Locke: “So I don’t have to…”

Father Chains: “Obey the Secret Peace? Be a good little pezon? Only for pretend, Locke. Only to keep the wolves from the door. Unless your eyes and ears have been stitched shut with rawhide these past two days, by now you must have realized that I intend you and Calo and Galdo and Sabetha to be nothing less,” Chains confided through a feral grin, “than a fucking ballista bolt right through the heart of Vencarlo’s precious Secret Peace.”


YES!

And this is just the beginning. The first hundred pages ticked by, the next hundred flew, the next three hundred had me up late at night with burning eyes. It found me yelling, “Just a minute!!” as I stole time from Hillsboro to get back to the sultry heat of Camorr. Then in a flash, it was over. I set my book down and said something brilliant like, “That. Was. Aweeesome.”

One Complaint: Alchemy exists in Camorr--and boy does it ever. It is applied to everything. There are alchemical lights, alchemical fruits, alchemical liquor, alchemical drugs, alchemical formaldehyde, alchemical make-up, alchemical toilet paper that removes all poo leaving a scent of roses behind. Just kidding on the last one, but it felt like that.

The rest--golden.

With GRRM like brutality, we lose several favorite characters and favorite villains. I always admire authors who can expend so much effort building characters only to kill them off. It would be like spending months building an incredible sand sculpture, then sending some toddlers to stomp all over it. Then instead of lamenting the lost effort, the artist then goes ahead creates something even better.

The plot gets so tense at times I would audibly sigh with relief when it was over. “Are you O.K.?” I heard more than once. In idle moments, or sometimes not so idle moments, my mind would wander back into the story to figure out where it would go next, or to guess at the fate of a imperiled character.

Backstory is given in small digestible chunks that is relevant to current action in the story. At first the sojourns into backstory was annoying and a little confusing, but either it got better or I got used to it and I started appreciating the context it brought to the story.

Best of all there are more books! Second best of all--this book stands on its own. It did not end in the middle of a story, nor did it, in the last hundred pages, invent a dozen new stories then end… Unlike some other authors I know. (Oh yes, I'm looking at you GRRM and Pat Rothfuss.)

Just kidding, love you guys--beards rule!
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
Leanne in MT, July 25, 2012 (view all comments by Leanne in MT)
The character of Locke is someone who grows on you until you are just on the edge of your seat trying to will him to convince his next mark, or beat his next opponent. The web of thieves and nobility and their respective blind spots are manipulated by Locke and the rest of the Gentleman Bastards with deft precision and without malice. This is the trait that makes Locke and his crew so easy to cheer for. That and the extent of their training, their pride in their work, and their camaraderie. When Locke's intricate plan to dupe the Don and Dona attracts the attention of another more sinister thief, things get even more complicated, and the final run of events is a real page-turning sprint. I had convinced myself that the author could not possibly finish the story with the pages remaining, but not only did Scott Lynch finish it, he finished it with style and with no loose ends or disappointing shortcuts. I would love to read about Locke and Jean's further adventures!
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(2 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
nrlymrtl, May 26, 2012 (view all comments by nrlymrtl)
In Book 1 of the Gentlemen Bastards series by Scott Lynch, much of the focus is on Locke Lamora. We get to see him start out as a small kid taken in by a thief lord. But after one too many incidents, he is sold to Chains, a fake priest who runs the Gentlemen Bastard thieves. He takes in younglings that have certain talents and brains and raises them to pull off much larger, complicated schemes.

Fast forward some years and the Gentlemen Bastards are now young men. Locke is still the slightly built, brainy, daring leader of the group. Jean has found his talent with some interesting hand weapons and his size. Caldo and Galdo often use their twin powers to pull off some scheme or other. Bug is the new kid and gets all the ‘character-building’ jobs. It is a great team, with lots of bantering back and forth.

Locke has a big scheme to rob some very rich folks, the Salvaras. The Gentlemen Bastards have a whole costume room that allows them to change their looks to suit different business types and ethnicities. However, things start to come undone when the Capa Barsavi is threatened and his men start turning up dead by the hand of the mysterious Grey King. Pretty soon, the Grey King’s nocturnal activities directly interfere with the Gentlemen Bastards and they are forced to do his bidding. The Grey King has a formidable ally, a Bondsmagi and his pet scorpion hawk.

Scott Lynch provides lots of great dialogue and unlikely, amusing situations. The Yuck Factor was also sometimes very high, but suited to the situation. The fast pace coupled with the detail and history of the place and people was excellent for keeping me entertained.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780553588941
Author:
Lynch, Scott
Publisher:
Del Rey
Author:
Scott Lynch
Subject:
Fantasy - Epic
Subject:
Fantasy - General
Subject:
Orphans
Subject:
Brigands and robbers
Subject:
Gangsters
Subject:
Science Fiction and Fantasy-Fantasy
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Mass market paperback
Publication Date:
20070626
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
736
Dimensions:
6.88x4.23x1.22 in. .76 lbs.

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The Lies of Locke Lamora Used Mass Market
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Product details 736 pages Spectra Books - English 9780553588941 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Scads of witty dialogue, a story packed full of twists and turns, and two of the cheekiest thieves you'll ever meet... What more could a reader ask for? The Lies of Locke Lamora is the first book in the Gentleman Bastard series, and the two books that follow are equally entertaining. Scott Lynch weaves an absorbing tale that will whisk you right out of this world and keep you thoroughly entertained.

"Review" by , "Locke's resilience and wit give the book the tragicomic air of a traditional picaresque, rubbery ethics and all."
"Review" by , "Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser would have felt right at home with the Gentleman Bastards. They're not out to save the world, just their own skins...oh, and to relieve some nobles of their gold, jewels, and silks along the way. This is a fresh, original, and engrossing tale by a bright new voice in the fantasy genre. Locke Lamora makes for an engaging rogue, and Camorr a fascinating and gorgeously realized setting, a city to rival Lankhmar, Amber, and Viriconium. I look forward to returning there for many more visits."
"Review" by , "Scott Lynch is a con man, a conjuror, a wickedly entertaining juggler of words with knives up his sleeves and hatchets down his back. By the time you realize he's dangerous, you're already bleeding. The Lies of Locke Lamora is a ticket inside the astonishing city-state Camorr, and a free pass into the company of the entirely extraordinary Gentleman Bastards, and a match for any fantasy adventure I've ever read. The best news is: it's Book One. That means there'll be more."
"Review" by , "Among the year's most impressive debuts...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. Fans of lavishly appointed fantasy will be in seventh heaven here, but it will be nearly as popular with readers of literary crime fiction."
"Review" by , “Remarkable....Scott Lynch’s first novel, The Lies of Locke Lamora, exports the suspense and wit of a cleverly constructed crime caper into an exotic realm of fantasy, and the result is engagingly entertaining.”
"Synopsis" by , An orphan’s life is harsh — and often short — in the mysterious island city of Camorr. But young Locke Lamora dodges death and slavery, becoming a thief under the tutelage of a gifted con artist. As leader of the band of light-fingered brothers known as the Gentleman Bastards, Locke is soon infamous, fooling even the underworld’s most feared ruler. But in the shadows lurks someone still more ambitious and deadly. Faced with a bloody coup that threatens to destroy everyone and everything that holds meaning in his mercenary life, Locke vows to beat the enemy at his own brutal game — or die trying.
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