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The Republic of Thieves (Gentleman Bastard, #3)The Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love this book. I am extremely sad that the remaining four books planned for the series are not instantly available for me to devour. Still thoroughly convinced that HBO would make a killing on a series based on these books.

We finally get to meet Sabetha in this book instead of just having her mentioned by the other characters, and I don't think Lynch is quite successful in his depiction of her. Josh really doesn't like her character, and although I wouldn't go that far, I can see why he doesn't. I think the problem is two-fold. First, all the other Gentleman Bastards are extremely funny and witty. I think Lynch wanted Sabetha to seem more serious next to them, but instead she seems humorless, a stick in the mud. I think that we also don't see enough of her being actual friends with the Gentleman Bastards. All we get really is the trip they take to pretend to be actors, and since they're all at odds with each other for a lot of that trip, we don't see Sabetha laying everything on the line to keep Galdo safe or her working seamlessly with Jean, etc. She never seems like an integral, cohesive part of the team to me. Most of the rest of her characterization works for me. It makes absolute sense to me that Locke infuriates her; he usurps her position of power in the group and doesn't even realize he's doing it. It makes sense to me that she would hold herself aloof as the only girl in the group. I just wish Sabetha had been characterized like Jean, and then I'd have no trouble seeing what Locke sees in her. LOL I do find the speed with which she misunderstands Locke to be quite frustrating, and I think what she does at the end of the book is really silly and unworthy of her as a Gentleman Bastard.

I don't quite know how to feel about Locke's background. SPOILERS: If he really is a Bondsmage who committed atrocities and then put himself in the body of a child, I'm not really sure it matters. Maybe he used to be that person, but he isn't anymore. He's Locke Lamora. He grew up in that new body and is now someone new. I thought he was going to be revealed to be the son of a Bondsmage instead.

I do like that this revelation means that the next books are likely going to be focused on the Eldren, who they were, where they went, what got them. Those inexplicable bits of the world-building have been one of my favorite parts of the series. I also like that Falconer survived and is going to be the overarching villain.

View all my reviews

(no subject)

6/6/17 19:12 (UTC)
musyc: Silver flute resting diagonally across sheet music (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] musyc
Ugh, I agree with you heartily in this review. I really, really, really wanted to like Sabetha so much. A Lady Bastard, with the wit and passion and VERVE that Jean and Locke have! Such potential! She could have been so fantastic! But she was ... aloof, yes, and cold. She did contrast with the main two very well, but not in a good fashion. I really couldn't see Locke's lifelong obsession with her. (Now, if her personality had been closer to the pirate queen from the previous book, holy green fishies, I'd have been rooting for her and Locke the whole way.)

I didn't really like the villain, but I've never been keen on an overall mytharc-villain sort of thing. I prefer monster of the week with a little bit of villain threaded in. XD I did like the backstory on Locke's origins. THAT could get interesting to explore, and I really look forward to seeing more of that.

(no subject)

7/6/17 03:04 (UTC)
musyc: Silver flute resting diagonally across sheet music (Default)
Posted by [personal profile] musyc
I would love to see more exploration of the Eldren - even just a hint of a description! Are they some entirely-alien race that just ... left the planet behind? Are they a human race that killed itself off or deliberately faded out? I have a tiny nubbin of a theory that the Bondsmages are very, very, very distant descendants of the Eldren, but I'm thoroughly happy to be proven wrong.


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