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Giant Thief (The Tales of Easie Damasco) Mass Market Paperback – January 31, 2012

3.4 out of 5 stars 15 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"A breezy novel... Tallerman’s charming, devil-may-care hero has plenty of swashbuckling roguishness to carry him through the planned sequels." - Publishers Weekly

"Capturing the brisk pacing and snappy dialogue of comic fantasy adventure, Tallerman's accomplished swashbuckling series opener should appeal to fans of Fritz Leiber's Fafhrd and the Gray Mouser stories and Robert Asprin's "Thieves' World" series." - Library Journal

“A fast-paced, witty and original fantasy, reminiscent of Scott Lynch and Fritz Leiber.” - Adrian Tchaikovsky, author of the Shadows of the Apt series

“Fast-paced, quick-witted, engaging; as apt a description of Easie Damasco, reluctant hero, as of the novel itself.” - Juliet E. McKenna, author of The Tales of Einarinn

"Breathless pace... Damasco resembles a landlocked version of Jack Sparrow... The atypical backdrop,self-aware style and downplaying of magics bring to mind the contemporary fantasies of Scott Lynch and Joe Abercrombie." - SFX Magazine
 
"If you're up for a fun, fast-paced adventure featuring rogues, giants and lots of fighting, you won't want to miss it!" - A Fantastical Librarian

About the Author

David Tallerman's fantasy, science fiction and horror short stories have appeared in numerous markets, including Lightspeed, Bull SpecRedstone Science Fiction and John Joseph Adams's zombie best-ofThe Living Dead.  Amongst other projects, David has published poetry, comic scripts, and an award winning short film.  He can be found online at http://davidtallerman.net/ and http://davidtallerman.blogspot.com/.

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Product Details

  • Series: The Tales of Easie Damasco (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Angry Robot; Original edition (January 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9780857662118
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857662118
  • ASIN: 0857662112
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #833,691 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
Thieves are in, thieves are cool, thieves are the new orphan boy whose destiny is much greater than his tattered clothes. And so its time for my next fantasy novel, starring another dashing rogue who is out and about stealing stuff and causing havoc. Easie Damasco - with a name like that you just know he is trouble. Giant Thief by David Tallerman is one of the better examples in the thieving genre, and while it wasn't always to my taste, the quality of writing in this book easily pulled me through to the end and has me wanting to read more about this scoundrel.

Giant Thief begins with a bang, or should I say a sizeable noose around our main character's neck, and it sets the tone for the entire book which sees Damasco constantly scrambling to save his own life. His homeland is at war, struggling to survive the onslaught of a warlord who has somehow convinced a tribe of giants to fight for his cause. So Damasco does the only logical thing, he steals one of the giants and runs. This is a story that is very much about running, almost three quarters of the book has Damasco and his companions on the run from something or someone, and then during the breaks we are given a bit of back story and a chance to progress the plot. The plot is not overly large, nor is it very complicated, it just serves as a framework for all the action to take place within. The problem is that I found the back story, the provincial war and all that shady politics far more interesting than the monotony of Damasco on the run. I would have loved to see Damasco engage more with these background elements instead of running from them every single time, and in the end I felt like I was missing out on a much greater story that was going on outside of the characters.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
In my eyes David Tallerman doesn't make it easy for the reader with GIANT THIEF, and probably I'll go more into that in a bit. GIANT THIEF isn't about a larcenist with a serious growth spurt... although that actually sounds really interesting. No, GIANT THIEF is about a thief who steals a giant. The blurb on the back of the book dares to compare this story to a Fritz Leiber product, except that its protagonist, the scuzzy Easie Damasco, is no Gray Mouser.

Easie Damasco is a despicable rogue, a not very accomplished thief, and is out only for himself. The story opens with Easie on the verge of being hanged, but instead he's drafted to the army of the vicious warlord bent on conquering his homeland of Castoval. Months ago no one had taken the warlord seriously, but that was before a race of enslaved giants began to bolster his ranks.

Trouble always seems to find Damasco, and yet somehow he always manages to extricate himself. Not only does Easie escape his conscription, he rides away on the shoulders of a homesick giant. And because he's a thief, Easie can't leave without first rifling thru the warlord's tent. He steals away with what he thinks is the warlord's coin purse. It's not a coin purse, and it puts a huge target on Easie's back.

Because of what's in the "coin purse," Easie Damasco and the party he accumulates are chased the length and breadth of the Castoval territory. Underneath the narration of Easie's hapless misadventures, a fictional travelogue was dying to come out. Anyway, Damasco and company are so persistently in flight, a sense of monotony creeps in.

The lead character is so unlikable and exasperating. Tallerman must've banked on the high quality of his writing to pull the reader thru. His prose is clear.
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Format: Kindle Edition
The story starts, essentially, with Easie Damasco getting caught with his hand in the wrong pocket and thus conscripted against his will, sent to the front lines of the coming war. Not being the kind of person to take this lying down, Easie uses his charm and guile to escape, stealing one of the army’s captured giants along the way, launching him forward into a large adventure that he can’t just walk away from.

With a concept like that, how can you go wrong?

Well, for starters, you could make the book into something that’s all show and little substance, relying more on character stereotypes than actual characters to help move the story along when Easie and Saltlick tire of running (which they do a lot of through the book, as they end up chased from point A to point B, then to point C, then just when you think they might get a break, bam, onward to point D). The book-long chase scene feels less like quick action and tension and more like a reason to get to the next plot point. Can’t figure out a reason why the characters would be in a certain location? Boy, that warlord and his armies caught up awfully quick, didn’t they? Time to run again!

There isn’t much world-building done through the course of the book. Hints get dropped at a wider world with more diversity than we see directly on the pages, but little of it is actually demonstrated, making the book have a very narrow and confined feel. Easie and Saltlick are, for the most part, the only characters who get any real development, which makes a degree of sense since they do feature on almost every single page of the book, but other characters who are often with them and have their own parts to play often thus feel shallow and unrealistic. And otherwise ended up playing to stereotypes.
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