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The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastards, Book 1) [Kindle Edition]

Scott Lynch
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (954 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $7.99
Kindle Price: $4.99
You Save: $3.00 (38%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

“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)
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.
Praise for The Lies of Locke Lamora
“Fresh, original, and engrossing . . . gorgeously realized.”—George R. R. Martin
“Right now, in the full flush of a second reading, I think The Lies of Locke Lamora is probably in my top ten favorite books ever. Maybe my top five. If you haven’t read it, you should. If you have read it, you should probably read it again.”—Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind

“A unique fantasy milieu peopled by absorbing, colorful characters . . . Locke’s wit and audacity endear him to victims and bystanders alike.”The Seattle Times
“A true genre bender, at home on almost any kind of fiction shelf . . . 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.”Booklist (starred review)
“High-octane fantasy . . . a great swashbuckling yarn of a novel.”—Richard Morgan

From the Hardcover edition.

Books In This Series (3 Books)
Complete Series

  • Editorial Reviews

    From Publishers Weekly

    Life imitates art and art scams life in Lynch's debut, a picaresque fantasy that chronicles the career of Locke Lamora—orphan, thief and leader of the Gentlemen Bastards—from the time the Thiefmaker sells Locke to the faking Eyeless Priest up to Locke's latest con of the nobility of the land of Camorr. As in any good caper novel, the plot is littered with obvious and not-so-obvious obstacles, including the secret police of Camorr's legendary Spider and the mysterious assassinations of gang leaders by the newly arrived Gray King. Locke's resilience and wit give the book the tragicomic air of a traditional picaresque, rubbery ethics and all. The villain holds the best moral justification of any of the players. Lynch provides plenty of historical and cultural information reminiscent of new weirdists Steven Erikson and China Miéville, if not quite as outré. The only drawback is that the realistic fullness of the background tends to accentuate the unreality of the melodramatic foreground. (July)
    Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

    From Booklist

    *Starred Review* On a distant world, orphan Locke Lamora is sold into a crew of thieves and con artists. Soon his natural gifts make him an underworld celebrity, leader of the flamboyantly larcenous Gentleman Bandits. But there is someone who covets Locke's talents, his success, his very life, forcing him to put everything on the line to protect himself. 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, pulling us into the middle of the action. With this debut novel, 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 (the parallels to Oliver Twist offer an appealing extra dimension to the story, although the novel is no mere reimagining of that Victorian classic). Fans of lavishly appointed fantasy will be in seventh heaven here, but it will be nearly as popular with readers of literary crime fiction. This is a true genre bender, at home on almost any kind of fiction shelf. Expect it to be among the year's most impressive debuts. David Pitt
    Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

    Product Details

    • File Size: 1667 KB
    • Print Length: 752 pages
    • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0553804677
    • Publisher: Spectra (June 27, 2006)
    • Sold by: Random House LLC
    • Language: English
    • ASIN: B000JMKNJ2
    • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
    • X-Ray:
    • Word Wise: Enabled
    • Lending: Not Enabled
    • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,203 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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    Customer Reviews

    Most Helpful Customer Reviews
    307 of 373 people found the following review helpful
    4.0 out of 5 stars Lynch's talent is bigger than this story August 14, 2006
    THE LIES OF LOCKE LAMORA is a fairly-well-hyped fantasy debut about the charismatic leader of a gang of con artists in a city that does (or tries to do) for renaissance Venice what PERDIDO STREET STATION did for Dickensian London. Overall, I enjoyed it - the prose was technically proficient, the plot hummed along efficiently, the setting was considerably more interesting than the usual plate-mail-and-offal-carts business, and there was a good deal of welcome humor. As debut novels go it's a promising start.

    On the other hand, it really doesn't amount to much more than an entertaining confection. The book's apparently been optioned for a movie already, and I can see why: the dialogue's relentlessly effervescent, occasionally stretching credulity past the breaking point (characters have one-liners for every occasion even while collecting broken bones and concussions like trading cards) and the screenplay-friendly three-act structure is too often embarrassingly visible underneath the flesh of the story.

    It's difficult to articulate my feelings on books like this. On the one hand, Lynch's technical talent clearly elevates him above the great gormless herd of modern fantasy writers already. And there's no denying that the book is very likeable indeed, while it seems unfair to fault it based only on what it could have been. On the other hand, it's just *too damn safe*. Lynch is going to be a major player in the genre - that much is obvious already - but he has it in him to do something Seriously Good rather than settling for being the next RA Salvatore. But it's not gonna happen until he gets over his fear of failure.
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    66 of 79 people found the following review helpful
    3.0 out of 5 stars Well-written but difficult to care about June 20, 2011
    Format:Mass Market Paperback
    "The Lies of Locke Lamora" (hereby to be shortened to "Locke Lamora") is a well-plotted novel that resembles an old-fashioned adventure tale. As other reviewers have undoubtedly stated, "Locke Lamora" is basically a medieval Oceans Eleven, with more dying. However, while I enjoined the twists and turns of the plot as well as the very well-developed backstory of the titular character, "Locke Lamora" is a novel that I was unable to finish. The reason? I really didn't care about Locke Lamora.

    As a Robin Hood-style novel, the quality of this book is inextricably linked to the charisma of its main character. And unfortunately, Locke Lamora isn't sufficiently intelligent to be admired, sufficiently tragic to be pitied, or really even sufficiently human for me to care about. The author presents him as a sort of anti-hero, an unparalleled thief with a heart of gold, yet when the action ramps up, Locke Lamora becomes surprisingly beige. By the time I got three quarters of the way through the novel, I realized that I really didn't care what happened to Mr. Lamora--and that is a death sentence for this kind of novel.

    It also does not help that the author spends quite a bit of time on world-building, yet this world-building never pays off. We see a fantastical world of alien artifacts, yet the reader is never able to understand this world--indeed, the world-building adds very little to the story of the novel.

    In all, Mr. Lynch's novel has all the hallmarks of a great book, but for me at least, it was never very engaging.
    Was this review helpful to you?
    118 of 148 people found the following review helpful
    Format:Mass Market Paperback
    Scott Lynch's much-heralded debut leads readers on a dashing thief tale in the best classic fantasy vein, through a vivid Renaissance-inspired fantasy city. Locke and his companions are clever rogues who must outwit not only their marks but also the city guard, their own underworld leaders, and a new vicious underworld faction.

    The plot surges into high gear in the second act with the appearance of this new faction, which could have been introduced sooner. The Grey King and especially his mage are so shockingly well-informed and powerful that Locke seems helpless against them. This keeps the reader turning the pages, but it also makes Locke's eventual victory seem implausible and rushed.

    The climax abandons the clever thief scheming in favor of a super-villain plot out of a James Bond movie. The villain's plan is far-fetched and poorly justified, Locke's response is oddly benevolent, and the other characters' reactions to him are unrealistic bordering on authorial wish-fulfillment.

    The constant interlude chapters covering Locke and Jean's boyhood distract from the exciting heist plot. Lynch does relate them to the present story, but this material could have been shown more quickly and less disruptively in short flashbacks. In addition, the narrative's shallow point-of-view makes the characters feel distant. Only their most basic internal reactions and emotions are described in a point-of-view that shifts through different characters in the same scene, includes constant descriptions of the point-of-view character's own facial expressions, and artificially hides from the reader much information that the point-of-view characters obviously know.
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    Most Recent Customer Reviews
    5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read!
    The story was engrossing, the characters vibrant and the setting like a fantastic Venetian backdrop for it all. I'd recommend this book to anyone.
    Published 3 hours ago by Tom Brown
    3.0 out of 5 stars Promising plot and story, but ultimately lacking solid characters
    This book only merited three stars because the plot was so Machiavellian. There were twists and surprises and leaps up until the last page. Read more
    Published 12 hours ago by Maree LaRue
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    I love this book. Literally can't put it down!
    Published 15 hours ago by Jocelyn Phillips Parker
    5.0 out of 5 stars Goodbook
    Found it entertaining. Starred a little slow. When people started dying my interest piqued. The big reveal wasn't anything special though
    Published 1 day ago by Kindle Customer
    5.0 out of 5 stars a highly improbable tall tale regarding a roguishly reasonable bastard
    How to review a story which creates a reality within a remarkable fantasy? There is no use whatsoever in discussing the plot of this is too complex. Read more
    Published 4 days ago by Susan Goldin
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Good read with a couple of nice twists.
    Published 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
    4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
    Started slow but finished with a nice twist
    Published 6 days ago by Diane Welsh
    4.0 out of 5 stars it was a fun read. Mostly light hearted but sometimes a little
    it was a fun read. Mostly light hearted but sometimes a little suspenseful
    Published 7 days ago by Jennifer Hartman
    5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
    Loved this book. I was so invested in the characters. I am reading the second book in the series.
    Published 7 days ago by Jessica
    4.0 out of 5 stars Great fun!
    This book was a damn fun read in a very well developed fantasy world. Characters are great and the pacing just keeps you wanting more. Looking forward to book 2.
    Published 10 days ago by A. M. Kaspar
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    More About the Author

    Scott Lynch was born in 1978 in St. Paul, Minnesota, where he still lives now. In addition to being a freelance writer for various role playing game companies he has done all the usual jobs writers put in their bios: dishwasher, waiter, web designer, marketing writer, office manager and short-order cook.

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    Topic From this Discussion
    Do not buy the Kindle edition in its current state
    I am having the same issues. It's nearly impossible to read in it's current state. I've been reading on my first generation Kindle fire.
    Dec 3, 2013 by Tyler Horn |  See all 5 posts
    Looking For Books Similar To The Lies Of locke Lamora/The Name Of The Wind
    I concur with The First Law series by Joe Abercrombie. I actually discovered him by recommendation from Scott Lynch so I had to check it out. It focuses around 4 or so characters with a few side ones, so it does jump around a bit, but I recommend it to you anyways. These books are great,... Read More
    Jan 8, 2009 by J. C. Amos |  See all 24 posts
    Appropriate for young adult readers?
    Extremely violent and a lot of F--- language. Great book but hard to call depending on your standards.
    Sep 5, 2012 by Specklebang |  See all 3 posts
    Review of Locke Lamora
    I am about 50 pages from finishing this book, and I am enjoying it, but thought the book was very slow from the start. Took over 100 pages (really, the arrival of the Gray King) to draw me into the story. Some of the things the "Gentlemen Bastards" do are a little obvious to me,... Read More
    Aug 12, 2008 by P. Mastandrea |  See all 4 posts
    Can someone explain the pricing of the hardcover edition?
    if a version is out of print many people put a ridiculous pricetag on it thinking because its out of print its gold i normally put it on my wishlist and wait eventually someone will sell it for a more realistic price
    Mar 13, 2014 by ryan gardner |  See all 2 posts
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