Friday, October 12, 2012

'The Lies of Locke Lamora'

You know how it is...

You have a stack of books; galley copies and newly-released; but none of them seem to suit your present need.  So, you go back to your favorites, those stories that had given  satisfaction so long ago.  The stories you always turn to, knowing the magic is still there.  

Sometimes, I'll pick up a Twain, or a Spencer Quinn, or an Austen.  Or maybe I'll try to finish 'Ulysses', or give Dorothy Parker's short stories another go.  There are times when I need a bit of history, or a biography.  

But a few days ago, I needed some fantasy...but not *cough cough* 'Fifty Shades of Boredom'.  I scanned the shelves and my hand landed on Scott Lynch's magnificent debut novel, 'The Lies of Locke Lamora'.  When I first read it in galley form, I was instantly taken with The Gentlemen Bastards, the gang of thieves that ran clever, clever scams.  But I wasn't prepared for the heartbreak.  I was astounded, to say the least.  I even shed a few tears.

The action is relentless, the evil is pure.  And the heart of the 'Thorn of Camorr' is tender, yet unforgiving when tragedy strikes.

The city is reminiscent of Venice, as are the clothes and manners of the nobility and merchants.  But those who came before left behind magnificent towers made of Elderglass, a material that pulsates with energetic beauty and color.

An orphan raised by a blind priest, Locke is taught everything he needs to know in order to become a successful thief.  And Camorr has never seen a more brilliant, innovative trickster.

With a scam in place, Locke and his cohorts are soon led into a scheme so diabolical, so evil, that it is up to them to save Camorr. 

So, on this rainy day in Oregon, I finished rereading the adventures of Locke and Jean, The Gray King, and the unsuspecting nobility of the city of Camorr.

Lynch's debut is brilliant, and I was overjoyed to read the second book ('Red Seas Under Red Skies') in this projected seven-book series.

If it's a rainy day in your corner of the world, pick up a treasured book.  Read it and experience the magic...all over again. 

I did.  And I think I'll have another.

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