The Gentlemen B*stards Sequence


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The Gentlemen B*stards Sequence

mar 16, 2009, 2:33 pm

I thought a thread to discuss Locke Lamora and friends would be nice. I found this to be a very enjoyable romp this last year and avidly await book 3. Wanted to see if anyone else was interested too.

mar 16, 2009, 4:30 pm

I received the first one from SantaThing this year at Christmas and I really enjoyed it. I am hoping to pick up the second one sometime soon.

mar 16, 2009, 4:38 pm

I've got both books on my shelf, just haven't gotten around to them yet... Hopefully sometime this year.

mar 16, 2009, 4:44 pm

Saltmanz, i think you'll like it once you try it. I quickly scanned our library overlap and your ratings there and with you liking the Malazon series, this should be right in line for you. (A little easier perhaps to keep things straight)

mar 17, 2009, 12:45 pm

I just started reading the first book and I'm really enjoying it so far. I am a bit surprised it was shelved in the youth section of our library. It doesn't seem like something I would ever want a child to read...

mar 17, 2009, 1:06 pm

Whoa, they're calling this YA? Is Red Seas under Red Skies there too? Because... the /language/!

I adore these books, but they're certainly not written to youth.

mar 17, 2009, 1:09 pm

I wonder if it's just because of the "fantasy" label...?

mar 17, 2009, 1:29 pm

Red Seas under Red Skies wasn't there, but that's most likely because our library doesn't have it at all.

But yes, The Lies of Locke Lamora was in the YA section. I can't figure out why. Within thirty pages, I've come across horrible language, references to rape/forced prostitution, and a description on the best way to hang a small child. Finding this in the YA section flabbergasted me. I'm considering talking to the head librarian about this one.

mar 17, 2009, 1:31 pm

Worth a polite mention, anyway. The constant insistence that if it's fantasy or sci fi, it's YA (or heck, even if it just has a protagonist under the age of 20) drives me /crazy/.

On the other hand, maybe that's why I read a lot of YA. ;) Good stuff out there!

mar 17, 2009, 1:43 pm

This is definitely not YA. I would talk to those who put it there. Can't see some well advanced 12 year old reading it without parental supervision. But I can see a 15 year old doing so.

mar 17, 2009, 8:35 pm

Well, it seems the ALA categorises it as YA, and even gave it an award as such, so it's hard to blame individual librarians for following that.

mar 17, 2009, 9:18 pm

We use the Library of Congress system to shelve our books and, as I'm sure our librarians cannot have possibly read every book in our library, they likely just go by whatever the LC system has categorized it as (I've never done this, though, so I could be wrong). I don't know if even talking to the librarian would really make a difference since, way out here in South Dakota, I don't think we have the power to actually change the LC classification system.

mar 17, 2009, 9:42 pm

At the library where I work (as a Readers Advisor in the adult section), I find books mis-cataloged all the time. A book will be in mystery that should really be in fiction, or the first book in a series will be in fiction and the second will be in sci-fi/fantasy, etc. Sometimes the librarian who purchases young adult titles will come to us with a book in hand, saying that she'd ordered the book but upon actually seeing it, realized it was a bit too mature for her section and do we want it in ours, that kind of thing.

Librarians can't read every book that comes in...depending on which system your library uses, and whether or not there are actual catalogers working in a back room somewhere, there may be more errors or less. And cataloging isn't an exact science, anyway. Genre-bending books can be judgment calls on the part of the cataloger.

In this case, it seems likely that the book (which I haven't read, btw) ended up in the YA section due to ALA having named the book as one of 2007's Best Books for Young Adults. If you have concerns over the book being in the YA section, I'm sure the YA or children's librarian on duty would be happy to listen to those concerns and take them under advisement, read over the passages you're specifically thinking of, find reviews, etc etc.

mar 24, 2009, 12:17 am

I just finished The Lies of Locke Lamora and I must say, that was one fantastic read! The second book is already in the mail and it can't get here soon enough. Checking on Amazon, though, the third book isn't due until the Jan 1, 2010, which is a bummer. Does anyone know how many books there are supposed to be total?

mar 24, 2009, 5:19 am

I think that there are going to be seven books in total at the moment.

I have seen 16/07/2009 for The Republic of Thieves (which is book 3) in the UK (from a Gollancz person). The UK edition has been the first edition so far for this series. You could buy it via a bit nearer the time which is usually pretty cheap and free delivery.

mar 24, 2009, 11:13 am

>15 andyl:, I'll definitely have to look into that. I've never heard of bookdepository so around July, I'll be checking it out. Thanks for letting me know!

Redigerat: mar 24, 2009, 2:55 pm

As with the other successful series like GRRM's Song of Ice and Fire or Jordan's Wheel of Time the series seems to grow.

There is a plan for 7 but we have seen some announcements of ancillary books.

Two novellas, 'The Mad Baron's Mechanical Attic' and 'The Choir of Knives' are to be released in a volume called 'The Bastards and the Knives'. The novellas will be about how the Gentleman Bastards acquired the Austershalin brandy they used in the first book and how they avoided being killed by the elite assassins known as the Choir of Knives.

Redigerat: mar 25, 2009, 10:39 am

I was talking about Lynchwith a friend the other day after she got me started on The Lions of Al-Rassan, discussing the topic of world-building.

I think that world-building is both one of the best and one of the worst things about fantasy or science fiction - when done right, it can be fascinating and complex and, at its best, illuminating about /our/ world. When done poorly, it can be trite, or confusing, or overwhelming.

I think that Lynch is a very gifted world-builder - in fact, I can't think of many who stand up to him in my mind. I can not only picture Camorr, but I can hear it and smell it and taste it - and I didn't spend much time consciously thinking 'oh, look, and expository world-building dump'. I adore an author who can sneak his world into place so smoothly that we don't even know that it's happening.

I actually remember pausing during one scene - when they're watching the women combat sharks in the bay - to think about how beautifully and smoothly the atmosphere was woven into the action. In that place, it felt almost cinematic to me - pans of the scene to set the story before shifting focus to the main actors. Short cuts away to establish the mood of the characters we were meeting, of the city in general, and even of a pair of characters who were to be surprisingly important later. It was gorgeous.

Did you all like his world building as much as I did? Know any other authors who really hold the gift of it?

Edited to fix the author's name! Oy.

mar 25, 2009, 9:53 am

>18 Aerrin99:, I, too, loved the world building LoLL! Off the top of my head (and because I'm too lazy to go through my other fantasy books) I can't recall another book I've read that has such strong visual images. However, I can think of a few other impressive world builders: namely Anne Bishop with her Black Jewels Trilogy. It's very impressive and very large in scope, consisting of an overlap of three different dimensions. I can't remember how well Bishop used imagery, but it must have been good because I had no problem visualizing what was happening in the book.

mar 25, 2009, 1:27 pm

In Book 2, I love the main city, but as we tour around the rest of the world, there does not seem to be a balance.

Though a fantasy, cities exist for reasons. Seat of government, silver mine, ford at the river so it was easy to cross. Trading center.

Then countries come into being. I am not sure we saw that very well defined yet. Almost as an adjunct to the need to have a background for our heroes.

apr 30, 2009, 12:07 pm

Just finished reading the first book after seeing a lot of recommendations on LT. And I'm not disappointed. I enjoyed it a lot and think the ties and familial love between the Gentleman Bastards was excellantly portrayed. (Anyone else who shared my dismay about what happened to the Sanza brothers?)

Must however say that I found the language to be unnecessarily crude. Yes, Lynch probably wanted to portray the way the characters spoke in their circles, but I felt the language distracted from rather than served the plot. It also caused that, while I loved the story, I will not recommend it to certain people who might otherwise have enjoyed it.

Still, can't wait to get my hands on the second one.

apr 30, 2009, 12:58 pm

>21 Emily1:, At first, I felt that way about the language but after 1/4 of the way through the book or so, I found I wasn't really noticing it anymore. I even found some of the cruder insults entertaining so I guess I disagree with you. In many aspects, I felt the language added to the characters.

I agree about the Sanza brothers, though. It was just so quick that at first, I didn't really believe what I'd read on the page. I had to read that paragraph a few times to really grasp the tragedy. But man, I loved those guys. Their humor was really unequaled but at the same time, it's really nice to see the strong friendship between Jean and Locke that you'll experience in the second book. I do miss them, though...

apr 30, 2009, 2:07 pm

The language didn't really bother me, but it would have if I were in my early teens. In my late teens it wouldn't have. Certain situations in the second book might also be the same. There is an age limit where your heroes shouldn't be thieves, having sex, selling drugs etc... So perhaps not for the under fourteen set...

maj 11, 2009, 2:24 pm

> 18. I think world-building is so important in fantasy! I agree that GGK does it very well, as does Lynch. I think most epic fantasy writers have to do it well or they aren't worth very much at all. I also think George R. R. Martin does a good job, though he is not finished with his series yet. I also think some alternate history authors do well, with just tweaking a few facts to create an entirely different world.

I have Lynch's second offering in this series on my shelf- I purchased it soon after it was written, but haven't read it yet. And the third one comes out soon, too, doesn't it? Gosh, I'm behind :-)

maj 11, 2009, 4:05 pm


Scott seems to be falling behind just like all the other big name writers. In these times, is it a fear that the book won't sell as well now? So slow down and hope that in an upturn it will sell better. Or is it lethargy on the part of the authors?

If it was me, and knowing that the more I write the more paychecks are to come, I would be hard at it all the time.

maj 12, 2009, 3:15 pm

> 25:

I agree. I know that writing is a more artistic pursuit, but I also think writers talking about "life" getting in the way of things is a bit of a cheap shot. As though the rest of us don't also deal with "life" and still manage to get our work done to meet deadlines.

I know it sounds harsh, but writing is a career just like any other! Maybe it's the more successful writers to start to get lethargic and fairly full of themselves. Last I checked at GRRM's blog, he had pictures up of his "brag" library, which only features his own books, in many editions, in many languages. Wow.

Haven't checked Scott Lynch's blog in some time, though :-)

feb 28, 2011, 3:58 am

I bought The Lies of Locke Lamora for the Kindle sometime before Christmas and was just blown away by how good it is. I read the second book that same week, although I wasn't ecstatic about that one, it was still pretty good. Can't wait for the third one! Although I was surprised that it took me this long to discover this one (I still have yet to discover anyone I know who reads a lot of fantasy who had even heard of it) I'm kind of glad because I hate waiting for new books to come out.

>26 aarti: I have to agree with the comments on GRRM. Seems like whenever I check his blog to see when his next book is out, the blog is full of comments like "Sorry, meant to finish it, but I had to go backpacking through Europe and watch American Idol" (Ok, so I exaggerate.) It's a job like any other, and although I can be sympathetic to some degree of procrastination, I think we can all agree its time for GRRM to sit down and get some work done.

Redigerat: dec 5, 2011, 11:09 pm

>18 Aerrin99:
Like you, I like the world-building in the GB series a lot. Funny thing, though: The particular scene you mentioned struck me as one of few scenes were it was a little too obtrusive!. Ah well, different strokes...

The fact that the Elders are totally unexplained, what elderglass is, is unexplained, but it's so cool.

The rooftop elderglass flowers that suck your blood by capillary action.

The big hole in the world in Red Seas Under Red Skies.

Scott Lynch has an interesting quote on world-building. I'll see if I can dig it up.

Redigerat: feb 28, 2011, 1:31 pm

Here’s the Lynch quote, from his LiveJournal page August 23, 2009:
City Building: The main point I tried to stick to here was that when you have an interesting city you want to set a story in, you cheat your worldbuilding to support the existence of that city, you don't just woefully hang your head and leave the city out because you forgot to draw enough farms on your map or something. I'm not at all a fan of the "begin by simulating the tectonic plate movements of your fictional planet several billion years before the story begins" style of worldbuilding; as far as I'm concerned, you write what you want to write and you shuffle things around ex post facto to support them. Or you just don't fucking explain things at all-- the mere existence of your big beautiful boondoggle should, in itself, imply that somewhere, somehow, something makes it all work, even if that background detail isn't important to the story.

feb 28, 2011, 1:37 pm

>25 DWWilkin:, 26

Unfortunately, Lynch has been suffering from depression. That has slowed him.

feb 28, 2011, 2:05 pm

Amazon has been preannouncing book 3 now. But the price seems to have a big jump.

mar 1, 2011, 1:10 pm



Looking at the link Carnophile has posted it is listed at $30.86.
On it is £10.49 (with a cover price of £14.99). Even with postage that is going to be cheaper than the price.
On it is £12.58 (with free postage to the US)

mar 1, 2011, 7:36 pm

Amazon usually has a ridiculous price set to begin with. It doesn't generally reflect the actual asking price of the book once it comes out. They do issue refunds of the excess when the book price drops. Still, I'm not sure why someone wouldn't just wait and buy this one when it actually comes out.

mar 1, 2011, 10:17 pm

But all books are released with their suggested retail price which in hte US is usually something that ends in .99

I was expecting 24.99 for something from Lynch in hardback, discounted to the 15's

We like Scott, but he is not a giant phenomena yet and shouldn't be able to command 27.99, or greater.

I can't imagine that price per page this can beat the Wheel of Time sequence and the latest price there.

mar 12, 2011, 4:54 am

There's an interview by Scott Lynch on Orion's website about the series. For those interested go to this page and then click on the extras tab. It's in audio version in 4 parts.

mar 12, 2011, 3:52 pm

Thanks for linking to the interview.

mar 14, 2011, 11:35 am

So has anyone actually gotten their hands on a copy of The Bastards and the Knives? I've been looking around for it, can't find it on Amazon, or my local county libraries. Couldn't find it on any of the book-buying sites I generally go to...starting to wonder why its so hard to get?

mar 14, 2011, 11:41 am

@38: As far as I know, it doesn't actually exist yet, which would make it rather hard to find!

mar 14, 2011, 11:41 am

I could be wrong but I don't think it's actually been printed yet.

mar 14, 2011, 4:52 pm

If we're really lucky we might see the release just in time for the Christmas market.

mar 16, 2011, 10:24 pm

I don't believe The Bastards and Knives is supposed to be written until after Republic of Thieves is done. So I wouldn't expect it until after Thieves has been turned in and published.

mar 16, 2011, 11:18 pm

Heh, I really should read posts properly. Didn't realise we'd moved on to the other book already.

Redigerat: jul 23, 2020, 12:19 pm

The fourth book, The Thorn of Emberlain, is scheduled to be released on September 17 of this year.

sep 25, 2020, 11:36 pm

Update: Apparently - I am not making this up - Amazon sometimes just adds a release date at random to forthcoming books.