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The Republic of Thieves (Gentleman Bastards)
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on October 24, 2017
The Republic of Thieves is a continuation of the excellent Gentlemen Bastard Sequence, and while it's probably the weakest of the three books, it's still a very enjoyable read that greatly expands on the world building of the series and Locke Lamora's background. The main story takes place immediately after the ending of the second book of the series, Red Seas Under Red Skies, as once again the duo of Jean Tannen and Locke Lamora have to move on to a different City State after all of the shenanigans they went through in the previous book. Pretty much immediately they are under the power of another person that holds their lives in her hands, with it this time being the mother of The Falconer, a Bondsmagi of Karthain that they'd encountered (to avoid any spoilers) in the first book. She requires their unique set of skills to rig an election of the normal humans in Karthain, part of a game the Sorcerers Guild plays every five years. The biggest hurdle in winning the game is their opponent that's also trying to rig the election for the opposing party, a woman from their past and a former Gentlemen Bastard who just happens to be the love of Locke Lamora's life, Sabetha Belacoros.

I always found it so interesting that in the previous two books, Sabetha was a character mentioned multiple times, but she never actually appeared in any of the flashbacks or the present day story line. This is definitely remedied in The Republic of Thieves, as she's featured in both the main story of the book, and the series of flash backs going from their first meeting their first big scheme as a team. Here is where the book really shined for me, as while I enjoyed the political thriller of the present story line, I was enthralled by the long flashback where the young Gentlemen Bastards are sent off to join an acting troupe and save the director Moncraine from massive debt and prison/hand-amputation for punching a noble. I absolutely loved all of the character building in this session of the story, and the multi-layered writing as the characters are acting in a Shakespearean Tragedy of Scott Lynch's own creation. I think a lot of other writers would have left a lot of it ambiguous, but the author doesn't stray from writing the play the characters are rehearsing and acting in while taking place in a fantasy novel.

The slowly budding love between Sabetha and Locke was a joy to read, and it served as a really interesting counterpart to the present day story line years later where they've been separated for years but are starting to potentially rekindle that relationship. Of course things wouldn't be that easy, as if the ever watching Bondsmagi of both sides promise to kill the opponent of their representative if either of them don't put everything into winning the game. There's also some twistiness introduced with Locke's background and his true name that could change everything the characters think they know.

Overall, this is a wonderful continuation of an excellent series of books, that while not quite matching the quality of the first two books, is a must read for an fan of the earlier books. My biggest complaint is probably that the stakes aren't quite as high in this book as the first two, and the conclusion is nowhere near as insane. Still, I'd definitely recommend it.
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on September 16, 2017
I loved The Lies of Locke Lamora & Red Seas, but I was just slightly disappointed in Republic. I wouldn't say it was predictable but it did feel slightly inevitable, which is, coincidentally, a reference in the book. I still think Lynch's writing is on par with Jim Butcher's, which I think most would say is a high compliment. His world-building continues to be interesting, as is his character-building. I enjoy how he structures and paces his books. I'd recommend this to anyone who enjoyed the first two, as well as anyone who likes the Riyria Chronicles or similar swashbuckling fare.
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on October 26, 2013
I absolutely loved this book. The dialogue was splendid, the description was witty, and the ending let me know that there would be more to this series. However, the key in this book was the relationship between Locke and Sabetha, and there just wasn't enough of Sabetha to hold up her end against the Force That Cannot Be Stopped that is Locke working with Jean. We only get her point of view once in the whole book, and that's just not enough for me. She does speak out some of the time; when she explains to Locke why she dyes her hair, I loved it. But there isn't enough of that. At the beginning, she comes off like a gentler, kindler Lily Evans, though I was delighted to see she grew beyond that. But there is too much of the time in the series when she is gone. There's not enough *there* there for Sabetha to be able to hold her own. Lynch does do wonderful female characters (especially the exceptional old woman in the first book, and Ezri in the second). But for some reason Sabetha comes out a bit flat.

That being said, I would be delighted to keep on inhaling this series as long as the books come out.
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on November 20, 2017
So far my least favorite of the 3 books released to date. I'd rate this a 3.5 if i had the option. I'm not big on reading play scripts and that's what half of this book was, a partial play. The main story-line was great but as much as I liked reading more about Calo and Galdo the flashbacks were tedious for me. I want these continuations to read like Lies and it's just not happening. I'm really hoping book 4 takes us back a little in style.
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on September 29, 2014
"The Republic of Thieves (The Gentleman Bastards Sequence: Book III)" by Scott Lynch is my least favorite of the three stories. Having said that I must also add I loved this trilogy overall. Book III is a bit tedious because of the repetitive "play rehearsal scripting" which put me off. It seemed like it was added as a storyline filler. But the wonderful characterizations', exquisite settings, and incredible cast of characters makes this a must read for fans of the fantasy/adventure genre so I highly recommend it. 3.5 stars!!!!
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on January 26, 2015
Too many characters playing too many roles makes this story a bit hard to track at times (this was better handled in the first book). Also, the build-up for Loche's red-haired lost love doesn't really pay off. Sabetha unnecessarily complicates issues and just came off as selfish. There's no real evidence of her love. She's just in the story to be chased no matter how childish or terrible she acts, which seems contrary to how clever she is in other regards. And Jean is two-dimensional in this installment, which is somewhat understandable given he has a less prominent role, but still disappointing. And, I think the real problem is that this reads less like a complete story by itself versus the first two books. This story sets up the next one and is ultimately unsatisfying.

All that aside, Lynch's world is well thought and feels solid even with the fantastic elements. The characters are all unique with their own motivations, personalities, quirks, skills, and weaknesses. There's enough detail to make things real without bogging down the story. And the story itself is a good one, even if it's not on par with the prior books. I still look forward to the next one!
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on October 27, 2014
Sporting two mildly unsatisfying plots awkwardly wed together and a massive, flopping cliffhanger of a final chapter, the excellent character work doesn't bring Thieves up to the standards of its predecessors. Worth a read if you simply must have more Locke Lamora, otherwise, just go reread Lies.
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on May 16, 2015
I very much enjoyed the previous books, as well as parts of this one, but there were also many moments when I found this one tiresome. Once or twice I considered abandoning it. There were scenes that really confused me, too, and I don't enjoy having to reread to try to understand.
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on November 24, 2013
I have loved the Gentleman Bastards series since it's inception, however I felt this book left something to be wanting. I loved the character of Sabetha and getting to see her more and understand the back-story was well worth it, however the overall narrative suffered because of it. Overall the plot was lost to the random interactions between the three major characters and the ending was rather predictable which was disappointing considering the fun twists at the ends of the other two books in the series. I'll still read the next one when it comes out no doubt, but I was disappointed.
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on September 12, 2017
There are so many intriguing questions left hanging at the end of this volume. I won't know if I actually like this book until I know what will happen to all of the threads Lynch is braiding. I think I like this book, but it's left so unfinished, that I cannot be sure. I am definitely looking forward to the next edition. My appetite is whet!
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