I have been a fan of the Gentleman Bastard ever since Lynch launched The Lies of Locke Lamora. My attraction to a piece of writing is never really about the tools of the trade or whether the author avoids falling into writer-traps. Instead my liking a piece of writing has more to do with whether my reader-bone is tickled and often about whether I identify with something in the writing.
Sabetha Belacoros is a fun character and she isn’t “good” the way society defines good. The gang of Chains definitely has a set of morals that they follow, but those morals follow the laws of The Crooked Warden. If I had to compare them to anyone in today’s society, the seeming morals of the filthy rich come to mind. In The Gentleman Bastard series there is not much difference between how the gangs of Chains and Lamora behave and the way the top tiers of their society behave (nobles, aristocrats, bonds-magi and so on). But then there isn’t much difference between the two tiers of society in real life society.
Maybe Jean is my favorite character. Where Locke and Sabetha are flashy figures, Jean is the guy that keeps the rest of them going. Flash has never really appealed to me in real life. People who sparkle and draw in the rest of us can be fun in tiny amounts, but the steady ones are the ones I am attracted to. I married a Jean although my Jean’s criminal activities are limited to sometimes driving too fast.
Our look into the past was my favorite part. Chains’ old gang is an insane delight. Those Sanzas! In the newer part, the bondsmagi were a chilling reminder of the sheepyness of society. You do not need magic to achieve the effect they had on Karthain. A crime free society where all are fed and taken care of is a dream come true. Perhaps not with the cost that affects the inhabitants of Karthain but there might be more reasonable paths to such a society.
- A Fantasy Reader
- Asmor (spoilers)
- Fantasy Book Critic
- Pat’s Fantasy Hotlist
- The Little Red Reviewer
- Hardcover: 608 pages
- Publisher: Gollancz; Hardback edition (10 Oct 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0575077018
- ISBN-13: 978-0575077010