Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Lies of Locke Lamora - by Scott Lynch

I had to reread The Lies of Locke Lamora to participate in the Little Red Reviewer's read along.


I had to reread The Lies of Locke Lamora to refamiliarise myself with it before Republic of Thieves is released hopefully later this year.


I had to reread The Lies of Locke Lamora because I'd forgotten so much of it since the last time I read it.


I had to reread The Lies of Locke Lamora because it's so much fucking fun!


If you've read Scott Lynch's stunning debut novel The Lies of Locke Lamora you will recognise that rather unconventional start to the review as the Gentleman Bastards little comedy sketch that they do a couple of times throughout the book. It's one of my favourite sequences in any book I've ever read and just had to do a little homage to it there.

I'm normally a fairly early adopter with epic fantasy series, but The Lies of Locke Lamora was out for a couple of years before I picked it up and read it. Why was this? It received mostly positive reviews and it was a caper novel, something I love. At the time I was in the middle of a couple of epic fantasies and getting pretty hacked off at the waits between novels to find out what the resolution to the most recent installment's cliffhanger was. I heard rumours that The Lies of Locke Lamora was the first of seven planned novels in the series. Yikes! Then the positive reviews kept coming and the second book (Red Seas Under Red Skies) came out pretty promptly, so I took the plunge.

From the opening page I was plunged into Scott Lynch's vision of Renaissance Venice crossed with Dickensian London in Camorr. I roamed it's streets with Locke Lamora and his fellow Gentleman Bastards. I watched as he pulled a huge con job on everyone, the residents of Camorr, it's criminal overlord Capa Barsavi and the unsuspecting Don Salvara and his gorgeous wife Dona Sofia.

I shouldn't have really liked Locke. He's a cocky little bastard. There's a quote from his mentor Father Chains that sums him up perfectly: 'Someday Locke Lamora, someday you're going to fuck up so magnificently, so ambitiously, so overwhelmingly that the sky will light up and the moons will spin and the gods themselves will shit comets with glee. And I just hope I'm around to see it.'
The young Locke's response is: 'Oh please. It'll never happen.'
However it does happen and The Lies of Locke Lamora is largely the story of it.

I was so totally drawn in by this novel. I laughed and cried, I raged at the Grey King and I cheered Jean Tannen when he cut the Berangias sisters up with his twin hatchets so delightfully named the Wicked Sisters.

I loved The Lies of Locke Lamora so much that I reread it IMMEDIATELY after reading it the first time, and I NEVER do that. I cannot recommend it highly enough and I can't think that anyone would read it and not get something out of it.


  1. I should have joined the read-a-long (even though I already read it too) because it's such a good book.

  2. Can never read Lies too many times. Little Red Reviewer is doing a read-a-long of Red Seas Under Red Skies beginning around the 20th of this month, so if you've never read it or wanted to reread it you could join in that.