Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The Republic Of Thieves by Scott Lynch

Locke Lamora is in trouble.  In exile with his best friend, Jean, he is seriously ill.  They succeeded in their last caper, but at a price.  Lamora has been poisoned, and none of the doctors and healers Jean has found have been able to heal him.

Finally, Jean approaches a Bondsmagi, Archdame Patience.  Bondsmagi are to be avoided at all costs, but without their help, Lamora will soon be dead.  Patience is able to reverse the poisoning, but there is a price.  There is always a price with Magi.

The Magi are about to enter the Five Year Plan, an election that determines the Kouncil that will rule the city they protect.  Each side is involved in maneuvering the election to obtain a victory.  Who would be better at trickery than the Gentlemen Bastards, Jean and Lamora?  She obtains their services and promises them help after the election in leaving the land. 

Jean and Locke take up the challenge, but there is one thing Patience forgot to tell them.  The other side has purchased the services of another member of the Gentlemen Bastards clique; Sabetha, the only woman Locke has ever loved or ever will.  They are pitted against each other, each knowing the tricks and wiles of the others.  Which side will win, and will the battle end the love of Locke and Sabetha before it can be given another chance?

Fans of Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastard series will rejoice to read this third entry in the series.  The characters are compelling; the tone sprightly.  Locke is a force to be reckoned with, loyal to the death to his friends, and willing to stop at nothing to fulfill his missions.  The book moves between the current battle and the time that the Bastards worked together in a play, The Republic Of Thieves, when Locke and Sabetha's love first bloomed.  There is fantasy but it is just a background accompaniment to the action, not overwhelming.  This book is highly recommended to fantasy lovers and readers interested in a rollicking tale that will leave them obsessed and anxiously awaiting the next installment in the story. 

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