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The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastards)
The Lies of Locke Lamora (Gentleman Bastards)
Price: £5.99

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I have never, no matter how bad it is, failed to finish a book. This is the one exception., 7 Dec 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I only heard of this book because of a recomendation from one of my favourite authors, Patrick Rothfuss (Kingkiller Chronicles) who likened it to his own writing and claimed that it was far superior to his own work... I'm half convinced that he said this so that his fans would read the book, realise how horrendous it is and so start praising Rothfuss' even more!

Firstly, my main issue is with the writing style... scattered doesn't even half cover the way that Lynch lays out his story. First we're back when Locke is very young then suddenly he's an adult then back to being a kid, then an adult again, then a slightly younger adult, then a kid. etc etc not only is this REALLY confusing but it means that at points in the story where normally a writer would want the reader to really care what's happening to a character we just don't, because we really don't know Locke enough to be overly bothered whether he might die or get captured or whatever. It's only as the book gets further on and we learn more about the characters through flashbacks that we start to care about them even a little bit more but even then it's not enough. There's a few "suspenseful" points where we think Locke might be dead or captured or whatever but instead of thinking "hell what's gonna happen?!" or "I hope he'll be ok" all I could think of was "mhe, oh well, perhaps we'll have a decent lead character now!" So yeah, the way the book is written really hinders the reading and the connections between reader and the characters. It's a real downer to read a book where you couldn't care less if the leads or secondaries die.

Does this sound familiar? An older guy gathers a gang of promising young thieves around him and gets them to do his dirty work in exchange for shelter and trains them by wearing an oversized coat stuffed with handkerchiefs which he challenges them to steal from him without him noticing. Oliver Twist right? Yeah, one of the first few scenes of the book.

Also there are a few resolutions that are a little too... convenient. As if the author made a situation in the book too difficult for the character to resolve and so had to throw a random excuse in. Don't want to spoil things in case you are planning to read this but for those of you who've read it already I have one word... Falconer :l So either the author didn't plan things or they just took an easy way out.

I don't know, perhaps I'm overly critical because I'm comparing it to Rothfuss and other authors like Robin Hobb or Tolkien but put it this way: I have never, no matter how bad it is, failed to finish a book. This is the one exception. I almost forced myself to complete it but shot that idea down when I realised it's the first in a series. If you love to break down and tear apart books and writing styles, which I do to some extent, then by all means read this book. If like me you were looking for a gripping, fresh fantasy book with characters who you'd do anything to meet and story lines so good that you dream of one day being able to write yourself, or even if you're just a fan of words and are looking for a writing style that makes you geek out and start spouting quotes at random passersbye: GO ELSEWHERE!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 16, 2014 5:41 PM GMT

The Magicians' Guild: Book 1 of the Black Magician (Black Magician Trilogy)
The Magicians' Guild: Book 1 of the Black Magician (Black Magician Trilogy)
Price: £5.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must read for fantasy fans!, 7 Dec 2013
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It may be slightly younger than books I usually read but still one of my all time favourite books and authors. Fantastic characters, great story and a lovely writing style, smooth to read without being too "simple". Haven't read a book by Canavan that I haven't loved so far!

The Wise Man's Fear: The Kingkiller Chronicle: Book 2
The Wise Man's Fear: The Kingkiller Chronicle: Book 2
by Patrick Rothfuss
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars No Contest. Best author!, 27 April 2011
I'm a huge fantasy fan and have read quite a collection of different authors; until reading this my top writers were people like Trudi Canavan, Robin Hobb, Peter V Brett etc (just to give you an idea of the kind of books I'm comparing it to). But after reading the first of this series, The Name of the Wind, I found reading books by other authors left me almost wishing that I was still reading Patrick Rothfuss' work!! His writing style is incredible, it flows wonderfully and at times is beautifully poetic but don't think that because he spends so much effort on the writing style that the story itself will be lacking; his descriptions are lovely and the plot is so good it draws you in and has you cheering for your favourite characters and laughing along with them!

As with the first book, the characters have great depth and real charisma. Kvothe and Elodin are right up there with Robin Hobb's "Fool," Trudi Canavan's "Akkarin" and Peter V Brett's "Arlen" as some of my favourite characters (probably tied first with the Fool!). One of the best aspects of Kvothe's character is the fact that he's still learning. He's not a protagonist who suddenly finds that he knows everything and is amazing at everything (For example, his failure with numbers and alchemy!). He has to put his mind to things and learn them like everyone else. Admittedly he does have an "Alar like a blade of Ramston steal" and can write songs that "make the minstrels weep" but I find that this can be at least partially excused because of his upbringing and boundless determination and thirst for knowledge! And it's not just Kvothe that's an incredible character, no! Even secondary characters have had a great deal of thought put into them, who wouldn't want to be friends with Simmon and Wil? Who wouldn't like to set fire to Ambrose's room and steal his purse??! The character development throughout these books is perfectly executed and wonderfully thought out.

I will admit that the sudden obsession with Kvothe's sexlife that occurs during and after his trip into the fae with Felurian was probably a little unnecessary... but hey! He's still a bumbling kid when it comes to dealing with Denna so it's not the sudden complete understanding of women that some readers complain about!

This book has a little of everything in it. It's got magic, it's got music, it's got alchemy, chemistry and sygaldry, it contains history and folklore and romance and feuding. It even has a touch of good old fashioned heroism with tales of calling down lightning and fire and a fighting style where the power of words is believed to be stored to be used in combat.

In short, if you only read one fantasy this year, make it Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicles! You will not be disappointed. Rothfuss is a master of words and you can't help but be drawn into his story and once you're there, you will never want to leave.

I am telling you three times; you will love this book.

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