13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on September 25, 1999
This fifth title in the series, along with Warlock of Firetop Mountain(1), Forest of Doom(3) and Deathtrap Dungeon(6), helps form the bedrock of the Fighting Fantasy world of Allansia. The sense of being in a wild, dangerous, exotic city filled with adventure is very well described by Livingstone. One cool aspect is that many later books in the series refer to Port Blacksand and it's dark denizens in passing. It gives a nice sense of continuity and familiarity with the FF world to be able to say, 'Yeah, I know. I've been there.'
Anyway, this is a must-have if you really want to have a good sense of the world-building that Livingstone and Jackson were doing with this series. Plus it's just a crackling good adventure!
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on April 3, 2011
It's funny how parts of your childhood return. I've been purchasing the Fighting Fantasy game book series that I used to play when I was 13. Now I'm 38, and playing them all over again. I have a toddler that takes up most of my time when I get home from work, and this series has been a fun way to relax at night and read/play for a little while before going to bed. It's like reading a book from the Choose Your Own Adventure series, but you have to fight villains by rolling 2 regular dice and find hidden objects in the story. I would probably try City of Thieves first since it was (in my opinion) the easiest in the series and has some excellent illustrations. The quality of the illustrations various from book to book, and City of Thieves is well done. The villains you face aren't too hard/numerous to defeat compared to some of the other books, and even if you get lost in some of the maze-like sections, the book will usually get you back to where you need to be. Others in the series will have you pulling your hair out when you seem to go in endless circles and just want to advance in the story. If you enjoy City of Thieves, you will probably get hooked and buy several more. I'm grateful that Amazon helped me find copies in the series so quickly since you have to order outside the U.S. Many are used copies, but are in really good shape and sell for only a few pennies apiece. I had about fifteen of these growing up, but never kept them. Now, I wish I had! These books have brought back a lot of good memories, and there have been parts of the stories that I suddenly remember from 25 years ago. I give it 5 stars for the fun and illustrations, and 4 stars because it was a simple book to win. There is fighting violence, but I would be comfortable letting any of my fifth graders try the series.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2008
I sat down on Friday night to read this book and I was very amused. It was an incredibly fun experience, and the course of the adventure held my attention. There were lots of amusing scenes and twists and turns in the plot line. At this point, after having read this gamebook, I plan to read all the books in the series. I wished that there would be a massive return of gamebooks of the 80's. These really are enjoyable.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on February 1, 2010
I very much enjoyed this as the first book in my collection of Fighting Fantasy.
The Book was good fun, pretty much addictive.
It arrived it supreme condition, to which I was thoroughly pleased.
on March 21, 2014
I already have a copy of this book from way back and was hoping that this was the updated version.It wasn't.The book I received was the older version,and though not complaining about the quality of the book I received (it was in great shape),the actual product was not what was promised by the seller.I have ordered from another buyer also and hope that the book shown for purchase is the actual version.All in all though,not really upset,I mean how could you be with such a great Gamebook as City of Thieves.If you can grab any version of this great Gamebook in good shape grab it, it's worth it.
I've painstakingly tried to put together what I think is the "complete" epic of just the sword & sorcery gamebooks of Fighting Fantasy.I think that this is the proper reading order.Here it is.
01.The Warlock of Firetop Mountain (no brainer there)
02.Caverns of the Snow Witch
03.Forest of Doom
04.Temple of Terror
05.Crypt of the Sorcerer
06.Return to Firetop Moiuntain
08.Eye of the Dragon (horrible book but does fit here)
09.City of Thieves
10.Trial of Champions
11.Island of the Lizard King
12.Armies of Death
13.Legend of Zagor
on July 17, 2013
My fourth foray back into the Fighting Fantasy series, and the sixth of the Wizard editions, City of Thieves has proved to be my favourite so far. It's a nice change to be able to explore a notorious town full of brigands and villains, as opposed to a dungeon, and while it may not have read like a Sunday afternoon stroll, it was fun exploring the streets and businesses of Port Blacksand. The experience was reminiscent of reading about Ankh Morpork in any of Pratchett's Discworld novels.
The adventure is also not rudely or annoyingly taxing - on my first read-through I managed to make it out of the city alive, albeit with only 1 Stamina point and unable to complete my mission. But it was great that most of the "traps" were not lethal, but merely punished the reader with handicaps which made completing the missions harder but not impossible. It made for a much more fun read.
All in all, I really enjoyed it, and the layout and map of Port Blacksand ends up being something quite pretty and a small source of pride. Great book; if you're reading Fighting Fantasy don't skip this one.
1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 1998
I was about elleven when i read this book. It took me a while because I always had to look up words in the vocabulary! But that reading experience was awsome, up there with the Lord of the Rings. It is very hard and challenging too, not one of these walk-through Fighting Fantasy. Give it a try!