Republic of Thieves
Random House Publishing Group - Del Rey Spectra
Pub Date: Oct 8 2013
A Summary…”With what should have been the greatest heist of their career gone spectacularly sour, Locke and his trusted partner, Jean, have barely escaped with their lives. Or at least Jean has. But Locke is slowly succumbing to a deadly poison that no alchemist or physiker can cure. Yet just as the end is near, a mysterious Bondsmage offers Locke an opportunity that will either save him or finish him off once and for all.
Magi political elections are imminent, and the factions are in need of a pawn. If Locke agrees to play the role, sorcery will be used to purge the venom from his body—though the process will be so excruciating he may well wish for death. Locke is opposed, but two factors cause his will to crumble: Jean’s imploring—and the Bondsmage’s mention of a woman from Locke’s past: Sabetha. She is the love of his life, his equal in skill and wit, and now, his greatest rival.
Locke was smitten with Sabetha from his first glimpse of her as a young fellow orphan and thief-in-training. But after a tumultuous courtship, Sabetha broke away. Now they will reunite in yet another clash of wills. For faced with his one and only match in both love and trickery, Locke must choose whether to fight Sabetha—or to woo her. It is a decision on which both their lives may depend.” Amazon.com
With much trepidation did I undertake reading Republic of Thieves. I was only mildly enamored by Scott Lynch’s previous work and while many people touted the genius of this new work, the reviews were definitely mixed. I have to say that I truly loved the main story of Republic of Thieves much more than I did the main plot of Lies of Locke Lamora or Red Seas under Red Skies. The interludes, however, remained the same for me. I just cannot get into them. They seem like a wholly waste of time and effort. I have often thought that these distractions had the sole purpose of the telling exposition but I’m all most always proven wrong in this. I just can’t understand why Scott Lynch is so addicted to telling two stories at the same time. I suppose it is that he likes the characters that he killed off in book one and just like the remaining Gentleman Bastards themselves, cannot put their fellows completely to rest. Which is certainly fine for those who enjoy the interludes. I do not.
I have to admit however, that this is, in my opinion the best book Scott Lynch has ever written and while the ending was less than tidy it was incredibly interesting. I will certainly read the next Gentleman Bastards book whenever it is released. If you are a fan of the series I would say that you will have a lovely time with this book. If you are a fan uncertain as to whether to pick this up, let me assure you that you will have fun. If you haven’t read Scott Lynch before let me point you in the direction of Lies of Locke Lamora. Because if you don’t read the first book in the series most this book will not mean very much to you. While the author does an excellent job of trying to make this a standalone novel. It is really best for most readers to simply read the series in order. I can only hope subsequent books are as good as this, for the author is truly on a roll.