I finally finished The Republic of Thieves! It took me two freaking weeks because of my new work schedule, which was really frustrating but also kind of nice I guess because I love Locke and Jean and I am really sad that now I have to wait for book #4!
***So, SPOILER WARNING. You have to read The Lies of Locke Lamora and Red Seas Under Red Skies before you read this, because there will of course be tons of spoilers about those first two book. You HAVE to. I know you want to read this review so bad right now, but go read the other two books first. Be patient. And you’ll thank me, because these Gentleman Bastards books are amazeballs and what are you doing with your life if you’re not reading these books???***
Alright, SO. Back to the review. I’m going to say right off the bat that I didn’t love this one as much as the first two, even though it was still pretty great. Just… great in different ways, you know?
Locke is dying. That poison from the end of the second book is slowly killing him, and Jean has exhausted his resources and contacts with no better chance of keeping Locke alive. Which is when Patience, a high-level Bondsmagi, decides to visit and offer them a deal – She’ll save Locke if they agree to play part in the Karthainian elections coming up. And, of course, no Bondsmagi will try to kill them in return for what they did to the Falconer. One of the catches is that their counterpart in the elections, the one helping Patience’s rivals, is Sabetha – the female Gentleman Bastard that has been haunting Locke’s dreams for years.
Let’s just get the not-awesome stuff out of the way, shall we? Just like the others, this books’ chapters alternate between the past and present. Normally I love that, but the flashback chapters seemed to take up a lot more of the book than in the previous novels. So much so that I had to remind myself that it wasn’t the present, main storyline. The flashbacks revolve around the time the young GB crew posed as actors for a play, and there was lots of play talk, which isn’t exactly my jam (there’s a reason people tend to gloss over long epic poems in novels). The present day chapters were about the election happenings, which again – not the funnest* to read about (compared to sword fights and long cons and piracy, at least.) There were some fun pranks played between the factions, but still. And lastly, I was really excited to learn more about Sabetha… and while I warmed up to her a tiny bit by the end, overall I found her kind of frustrating and irrational. Le sigh.
All of that aside, there was still plenty to love and enjoy. I still marked out some favorite quotes and passages. The Bondsmagi aspects of the story were INSANE. We learn SO much about them, and some absolutely bat-shit crazy stuff happens that will come into play in the next books and I CANNOT wait for that. A few more hints about the Eldren are dropped, but of course there are always more questions. I’m kind of hoping that the mystery of the Eldren is never completely revealed though… some things are better left a mystery. There were funny moments, and there was a lot of the Sanza twins in the flashbacks, and there were HUGE plot twists and DAMN IT I can’t wait for the fourth book. I sincerely hope Scott Lynch is already working on it and that I won’t have to wait like 3 years for the next one.
Sarah Says: 4 stars
*Shut up, funnest should totally be a word.