Lies of Locke Lamora Rothdas book review RSS
3.0 Stars

A generally enjoyable beer and pretzels fantasy adventure story. The main idea is that there is a Thieves Guild, and a clever & roguish thief, and nobles and merchants, and some plots and cons and sword fighting and magic. At least initially I assumed that it had been written ~20 years ago, and it reminded me really strongly of some short stories that a friend was writing back around 2000-2002. But nope, Lies of Locke Lamora was published in 2006, and apparently wasn't anyone's inspiration after all. Still, despite the some what old school feel to the story, it's not bad. There's some nice world building, and the writing is decent and fast moving, and the few magicians that show up have an overpowered-evil-and-strange feel to them like in the old Conan stories. Also, I read 700 pages of it while enjoying myself and not becoming upset at the writing, so that's something.

There were a couple of weak spots, which kept the book from rising to 4 stars. The story is a tad slow for the first 500 pages, and doesn't have as much of a sense of danger as I would like. Things only really pick up in the last 200 pages or so. There's also a sort of double storyline going on, where you are moving through events both in the past and in the present day. The past storyline was never as interesting as the present day one, and when I arrived at the start of another past-chapter I would sigh just a bit. Finally, the main character is supposed to be really clever and conniving, but the author occasionally didn't have the chops to make him that way. I.e. the character might come up with a plot/con, but it seems like the con only works because the author gave the character plot armor, rather than because the con was actually clever. So the story never really rises to the level of something like the Kvothe books.