Book Summary: 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.
My Review: I am fully aware that this book didn’t need one more five star review. That’s a good thing because this is only a four and I’m rounding up. It’s not all sunshine, rainbows and honeypots this week. I’ll make this review short lest it turns into a rant on how the last few sentences of a book can ruin that book for someone who has been patiently waiting to read that book. Promise. I have been dying to read this book but we review books here in a calm and orderly fashion so I had a list that I needed to finish first.
Perhaps this review is a victim of this book’s success. I waited too long to read it and it all just built up. What I can’t get over are the last few sentences of this book. Locke tells Jean his real name. The kicker here is that we don’t get to know what it is. He whispers it. Whispers it. I feel as though I earned the right to know. I kept reading through that scene in the counting house. I deserve a name or a pony or something. There better be an excellent reason that we don’t get to know.
On to what I loved about this book. Father Chains. He is uniquely loquacious. The only bad thing is that he isn’t in the whole book. I would read an entire book about Father Chains exploits. Sadly, Father Chains is gone by the time the actual story takes place. There are interludes that flash back to when Locke, Jean, and the Sanza twins were boys and Father Chains was teaching them everything he knew. That was a lot in case you were wondering. He teaches them to be priests of the temple they are living in and then greases the wheels to get them into other temples so that they can learn about the other Gods. This is all to further their skills to become smarter thieves. These interludes are not just important to the story to provide history but they offer a break. Learning how Jean became Jean was a nice story. Some hero’s realize who they are early on and Jean is definitely a hero.
This brings me to my revelation. When I finished this book and was all worked up over those last few sentences I overlooked something. I missed the fact that not all hero’s are Jean and not all characters are Father Chains. Sometimes they are sneak thieves that are unimpressive at the beginning of a story and are still slowly learning their lessons. I would have loved to have seen a true change in Locke Lamora. I would have liked to have seen him truly learn from his time with Father Chains. In this story he learns a lesson that he forgot. Loss and revenge are explosive when combined. I hope he learns those other lessons in the next books.
This book is well written and flows smoothly. I listened to a small portion of chapter four. It was a Father Chains interlude and I didn’t want to stop the story while I did the dishes. Pans don’t go into the dishwasher. From what I listened to I can say that Michael Page’s narration is amazing. He gave Father Chains flair and that was the voice in my head as I finished the book.
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