Red Seas under Red Skies

( 137 )

Overview

In his highly acclaimed debut, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Scott Lynch took us on an adrenaline-fueled adventure with a band of daring thieves led by con artist extraordinaire Locke Lamora. Now Lynch brings back his outrageous hero for a caper so death-defying, nothing short of a miracle will pull it off.

After a brutal battle with the underworld that nearly destroyed him, Locke and his trusted sidekick, Jean, fled the island city of their ...

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Overview

In his highly acclaimed debut, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Scott Lynch took us on an adrenaline-fueled adventure with a band of daring thieves led by con artist extraordinaire Locke Lamora. Now Lynch brings back his outrageous hero for a caper so death-defying, nothing short of a miracle will pull it off.

After a brutal battle with the underworld that nearly destroyed him, Locke and his trusted sidekick, Jean, fled the island city of their birth and landed on the exotic shores of Tal Verrar to nurse their wounds. But even at this westernmost edge of civilization, they can’t rest for long—and are soon back to what they do best: stealing from the undeserving rich and pocketing the proceeds for themselves.

This time, however, they have targeted the grandest prize of all: the Sinspire, the most exclusive and heavily guarded gambling house in the world. Its nine floors attract the wealthiest clientele—and to rise to the top, one must impress with good credit, amusing behavior…and excruciatingly impeccable play. For there is one cardinal rule, enforced by Requin, the house’s cold-blooded master: it is death to cheat at any game at the Sinspire.

Brazenly undeterred, Locke and Jean have orchestrated an elaborate plan to lie, trick, and swindle their way up the nine floors…straight to Requin’s teeming vault. Under the cloak of false identities, they meticulously make their climb—until they are closer to the spoils than ever.

But someone in Tal Verrar has uncovered the duo’s secret. Someone from their past who has every intention of making the impudent criminals pay for their sins. Now it will take every ounce of cunning to save their mercenary souls. And even that may not be enough.…

PRAISE FOR SCOTT LYNCH
 
“A bright new voice in the fantasy genre.”—George R. R. Martin
 
Red Seas Under Red Skies
 
“Lynch hasn’t merely imagined a far-off world, he’s created it, put it all down on paper—the smells, the sounds, the people, the feel of the place. The novel is a virtuoso performance, and sf/fantasy fans will gobble it up.”Booklist (starred review)
 
Red Seas Under Red Skies firmly proves that Scott Lynch isn’t a one-hit wonder. . . . It’ll only be a matter of time before Scott Lynch is mentioned in the same breath as George R. R. Martin and Steven Erikson.”Fantasy Book Critic
 
“Grand, grandiose, grandiloquent . . . No critic is likely to fault Lynch in his overflowing qualities of inventiveness, audacious draftsmanship, and sympathetic characterization.”Locus
 
“The kind of witty romp that reminds you exactly how much fun heroic fantasy is supposed to be.”SFX

The Lies of Locke Lamora
 
“Right now, in the full flush of a second reading, I think The Lies of Locke Lamora is probably in my top ten favorite books ever. Maybe my top five. If you haven’t read it, you should. If you have read it, you should probably read it again.”—Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
PRAISE FOR SCOTT LYNCH
 
“A bright new voice in the fantasy genre.”—George R. R. Martin
 
Red Seas Under Red Skies
 
“Lynch hasn’t merely imagined a far-off world, he’s created it, put it all down on paper—the smells, the sounds, the people, the feel of the place. The novel is a virtuoso performance, and sf/fantasy fans will gobble it up.”Booklist (starred review)
 
Red Seas Under Red Skies firmly proves that Scott Lynch isn’t a one-hit wonder. . . . It’ll only be a matter of time before Scott Lynch is mentioned in the same breath as George R. R. Martin and Steven Erikson.”Fantasy Book Critic
 
“Grand, grandiose, grandiloquent . . . No critic is likely to fault Lynch in his overflowing qualities of inventiveness, audacious draftsmanship, and sympathetic characterization.”Locus
 
“The kind of witty romp that reminds you exactly how much fun heroic fantasy is supposed to be.”SFX

The Lies of Locke Lamora
 
“Right now, in the full flush of a second reading, I think The Lies of Locke Lamora is probably in my top ten favorite books ever. Maybe my top five. If you haven’t read it, you should. If you have read it, you should probably read it again.”—Patrick Rothfuss, New York Times bestselling author of The Name of the Wind

Publishers Weekly

Like its roguish protagonists, Lynch's colorful sequel to 2006's The Lies of Locke Lamorais charming, unpredictable and fast on its feet and stands surprisingly well on its own given its convoluted plot. Initially poised to rob the Sinspire, the notoriously thief-proof casino where the penalty for cheating is death, Locke and his partner, Jean, are unwillingly sidetracked into joining and then leading a pirate crew, swindling their way across the sea as they had previously done on land. The cinematic influences on Lynch's fantasy setting are evident, the borrowing is mostly ingenious and the prose frequently enthralls, but tone and pacing suffer from odd inconsistencies. A handful of dark moments clash uncomfortably with the overall devil-may-care atmosphere. Most frustrating of all is the handling of key secondary character Ezri Delmastro, who shines too briefly as an energetic romantic interest for Jean. The ending promises at least one more installment, but fans may be unhappy if the saga strays too far from its amiable roots. (Aug.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780553588958
  • Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 7/29/2008
  • Series: Gentleman Bastard Series , #2
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 784
  • Sales rank: 34,496
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.90 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Scott Lynch was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1978 and currently lives in Wisconsin and frequently visits Massachusetts, the home of his partner, SF/F writer Elizabeth Bear. He moonlights as a game designer and volunteer firefighter. This is his second novel.

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Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER ONE

LITTLE GAMES

1

THE GAME WAS CAROUSEL HAZARD, the stakes were roughly half of all the wealth they commanded in the entire world, and the plain truth was that Locke Lamora and Jean Tannen were getting beaten like a pair of dusty carpets.

"Last offering for the fifth hand," said the velvet-coated attendant from his podium on the other side of the circular table. "Do the gentlemen choose to receive new cards?"

"No, no—the gentlemen choose to confer," said Locke, leaning to his left to place his mouth close to Jean's ear. He lowered his voice to a whisper. "What's your hand look like?"

"A parched desert," Jean murmured, casually moving his right hand up to cover his mouth. "How's yours?"

"A wasteland of bitter frustration."

"Shit."

"Have we been neglecting our prayers this week? Did one of us fart in a temple or something?"

"I thought the expectation of losing was all part of the plan."

"It is. I just expected we'd be able to put up a better fight than this."

The attendant coughed demurely into his left hand, the card-table equivalent of slapping Locke and Jean across the backs of their heads. Locke leaned away from Jean, tapped his cards lightly against the lacquered surface of the table, and grinned the best knew-what-he-was-doing sort of grin he could conjure from his facial arsenal. He sighed inwardly, glancing at the sizable pile of wooden markers that was about to make the short journey from the center of the table to his opponents' stacks.

"We are of course prepared," he said, "to meet our fate with heroic stoicism, worthy of mention by historians and poets."

The dealer nodded. "Ladies and gentlemen both decline last offering. House calls for final hands."

There was a flurry of shuffling and discarding as the four players formed their final hands and set them, facedown, on the table before them.

"Very well," said the attendant. "Turn and reveal."

The sixty or seventy of Tal Verrar's wealthiest idlers who had crowded the room behind them to watch every turn of Locke and Jean's unfolding humiliation now leaned forward as one, eager to see how embarrassed they would be this time.

2

TAL VERRAR, the Rose of the Gods, at the westernmost edge of what the Therin people call the civilized world.

If you could stand in thin air a thousand yards above Tal Verrar's tallest towers, or float in lazy circles there like the nations of gulls that infest the city's crevices and rooftops, you could see how its vast dark islands have given this place its ancient nickname. They seem to whirl outward from the city's heart, a series of crescents steadily increasing in size, like the stylized petals of a rose in an artist's mosaic.

They are not natural, in the sense that the mainland looming a few miles to the northeast is natural. The mainland cracks before wind and weather, showing its age. The islands of Tal Verrar are unweathered, possibly unweatherable—they are the black glass of the Eldren, unimaginable quantities of it, endlessly tiered and shot through with passages, glazed with layers of stone and dirt from which a city of men and women springs.

This Rose of the Gods is surrounded by an artificial reef, a broken circle three miles in diameter, shadows under shadowed waves. Against this hidden wall the restless Sea of Brass is gentled for the passage of vessels flying the banners of a hundred kingdoms and dominions. Their masts and yards rise in a forest, white with furled sails, far beneath your feet.

If you could turn your eye to the city's western island, you would see that its interior surfaces are sheer black walls, plunging hundreds of feet to the softly lapping harbor waves, where a network of wooden docks clings to the base of the cliffs. The seaward side of the island, however, is tiered along its entire length. Six wide, flat ledges sit one atop the other with smooth fifty-foot escarpments backing all but the highest.

The southernmost district of this island is called the Golden Steps—its six levels are thick with alehouses, dicing dens, private clubs, brothels, and fighting pits. The Golden Steps are heralded as the gambling capital of the Therin city-states, a place where men and women may lose money on anything from the mildest vices to the wickedest felonies. The authorities of Tal Verrar, in a magnanimous gesture of hospitality, have decreed that no foreigner upon the Golden Steps may be impressed into slavery. As a result, there are few places west of Camorr where it is safer for strangers to drink their brains out and fall asleep in the gutters and gardens.

There is rigid stratification on the Golden Steps; with each successively higher tier, the quality of the establishments rises, as do the size, number, and vehemence of the guards at the doors. Crowning the Golden Steps are a dozen baroque mansions of old stone and witchwood, embedded in the wet green luxury of manicured gardens and miniature forests.

These are the "chance houses of quality"—exclusive clubs where men and women of funds may gamble in the style to which their letters of credit entitle them. These houses have been informal centers of power for centuries, where nobles, bureaucrats, merchants, ships' captains, legates, and spies gather to wager fortunes, both personal and political.

Every possible amenity is contained within these houses. Notable visitors board carriage-boxes at exclusive docks at the base of the inner harbor cliffs, and are hauled up by gleaming brass water engines, thereby avoiding the narrow, twisting, crowd-choked ramps leading up the five lower Steps on their seaward face. There is even a public dueling green—a broad expanse of well-kept grass lying dead-center on the top tier, so that cooler heads need not be given any chance to prevail when someone has their blood up.

The houses of quality are sacrosanct. Custom older and firmer than law forbids soldiers or constables to set foot within them, save for response to the most heinous crimes. They are the envy of a continent: no foreign club, however luxurious or exclusive, can quite recapture the particular atmosphere of a genuine Verrari chance house. And they are, one and all, put to shame by the Sinspire.

Nearly one hundred and fifty feet tall, the Sinspire juts skyward at the southern end of the topmost tier of the Steps, which is itself more than two hundred and fifty feet above the harbor. The Sinspire is an Elderglass tower, glimmering with a pearly black sheen. A wide balcony decked with alchemical lanterns circles each of its nine levels. At night, the Sinspire is a constellation of lights in scarlet and twilight-sky blue, the heraldic colors of Tal Verrar.

The Sinspire is the most exclusive, most notorious, and most heavily guarded chance house in the world, open from sunset to sunrise for those powerful, wealthy, or beautiful enough to make it past the whims of the doorkeepers. Each ascending floor outdoes the one beneath it for luxury, exclusivity, and the risk ceiling of the games allowed. Access to each higher floor must be earned with good credit, amusing behavior, and impeccable play. Some aspirants spend years of their lives and thousands of solari trying to catch the attention of the Sinspire's master, whose ruthless hold on his unique position has made him the most powerful arbiter of social favor in the city's history.

The code of conduct at the Sinspire is unwritten, but as rigid as that of a religious cult. Most simply, most incontrovertibly, it is death to be caught cheating here. Were the archon of Tal Verrar himself to be detected with a card up his sleeve, he would find no appeal this side of the gods themselves from the consequences. Every few months, the tower's attendants discover some would-be exception to the rule, and yet another person dies quietly of an alchemical overdose in their carriage, or tragically "slips" from the balcony nine stories above the hard, flat stones of the Sinspire's courtyard.

It has taken Locke Lamora and Jean Tannen two years and a completely new set of false identities to carefully cheat their way up to the fifth floor.

They are, in fact, cheating at this very moment, trying hard to keep up with opponents who have no need to do likewise.

3

"LADIES SHOW a run of Spires and a run of Sabers, crowned with the Sigil of the Sun," said the attendant. "Gentlemen show a run of Chalices and a mixed hand, crowned with the five of Chalices. Fifth hand is to the ladies."

Locke bit the inside of his cheek as a wave of applause rippled through the warm air of the room. The ladies had taken four of the five hands so far, and the crowd had barely deigned to notice Locke and Jean's sole victory.

"Well, damn," said Jean, in credible mock surprise.

Locke turned to the opponent on his right. Maracosa Durenna was a slender, dark-complexioned woman in her late thirties, with thick hair the color of oil smoke and several visible scars on her neck and forearms. In her right hand she held a thin black cigar wrapped with gold thread, and on her face she wore a tight smile of detached contentment. The game was clearly not demanding her utmost exertion.

The attendant flicked Locke and Jean's little pile of lost wooden counters toward the ladies' side of the table with a long-handled crop. He then used the same crop to sweep all the cards back into his hands; it was strictly forbidden for players to touch the cards after the attendant had called for the reveal.

"Well, Madam Durenna," said Locke, "my congratulations on the increasingly robust state of your finances. Your purse would seem to be the only thing growing faster than my impending hangover." Locke knuckle-walked one of his markers over the fingers of his right hand. The little wooden disk was worth five solari, roughly eight months' pay for a common laborer.

"My condolences on a particularly unfortunate run of cards, Master Kosta." Madam Durenna took a long drag from her cigar, then slowly exhaled a stream of smoke so that it hung in the air between Locke and Jean, just far enough away to avoid direct insult. Locke had come to recognize that she used the cigar smoke as her strat péti, her "little game"—an ostensibly civilized mannerism actually cultivated to distract or annoy opponents at a gaming table, and goad them into mistakes. Jean had planned to use his own cigars for the same purpose, but Durenna's aim was better.

"No run of cards could be considered truly unfortunate in the presence of such a lovely pair of opponents," said Locke.

"I could almost admire a man who can stay so charmingly dishonest while being bled of all his silver," said Durenna's partner, who was seated on Durenna's right, between her and the dealer.

Izmila Corvaleur was nearly of a size with Jean, wide and florid, prodigiously rounded in every place a woman could be round. She was undeniably attractive, but the intelligence that shone out of her eyes was sharp and contemptuous. In her Locke recognized a contained pugnacity akin to that of a street brawler—a honed appetite for hard contests. Corvaleur nibbled constantly from a silver-gilded box of cherries coated in powdered chocolate, sucking her fingers loudly after each one. Her own strat péti, of course.

She was purpose-built for Carousel Hazard, thought Locke. A mind for the cards and a frame capable of withstanding the game's unique punishment for losing a hand.

"Default," said the attendant. Within his podium, he tripped the mechanism that set the carousel spinning. This device, in the center of the table, was a set of circular brass frames that held row upon row of tiny glass vials, each one capped in silver. It whirled under the soft lantern light of the gaming parlor, until it became continuous streaks of silver within brass, and then—a clinking sound of mechanisms beneath the table, the rattle of many tiny vessels of thick glass colliding with one another, and the carousel spat out two of its vials. They rolled toward Locke and Jean and clattered against the slightly upraised outer rim of the table.

Carousel Hazard was a game for two teams of two; an expensive game, for the clockwork carousel mechanism came very dear. At the end of each hand, the losing team was randomly dispensed two vials from the carousel's great store of little bottles; these held liquor, mixed with sweet oils and fruit juice to disguise the potency of any given drink. The cards were only one aspect of the game. Players also had to maintain concentration under the increasing effects of the devilish little vials. The only way a game could end was for a player to become too drunk to keep playing.

Theoretically, the game could not be cheated. The Sinspire maintained the mechanism and prepared the vials; the little silver caps were fastened tight over wax seals. Players were not permitted to touch the carousel, or another player's vials, on pain of immediate default. Even the chocolates and cigars being consumed by the players had to be provided by the house. Locke and Jean could even have refused to allow Madam Corvaleur the luxury of her sweets, but that would have been a bad idea for several reasons.

"Well," said Jean as he cracked the seal on his tiny libation, "here's to charming losers, I suppose."

"If only we knew where to find some," said Locke, and in unison they tossed back their drinks. Locke's left a warm, plum-flavored trail down his throat—it was one of the potent ones. He sighed and set the empty vial down before him. Four vials to one, and the way his concentration seemed to be unraveling at the edges meant that he was beginning to feel it.

As the attendant sorted and shuffled the cards for the next hand, Madam Durenna took another long, satisfied draw on her cigar and flicked the ashes into a solid-gold pot set on a pedestal behind her right hand. She exhaled two lazy streams of smoke through her nose and stared at the carousel from behind a gray veil. Durenna was a natural ambush predator, Locke thought, always most comfortable behind some camouflage. His information said that she was only recently arrived in the life of a city-bound merchant speculator. Her previous profession had been the command of bounty-privateers, hunting and sinking the slaver ships of Jerem on the high seas. She hadn't acquired those scars drinking tea in anyone's parlor.

It would be very, very unfortunate if a woman like her were to realize that Locke and Jean were counting on what Locke liked to call "discreetly unorthodox methods" to win the game—hell, it would be preferable to simply lose the old-fashioned way, or to be caught cheating by the Sinspire attendants. They, at least, would probably be quick and efficient executioners. They had a very busy establishment to run.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 137 )
Rating Distribution

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(37)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 137 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 11, 2011

    Excellent sequel

    Great follow up to the first book. Different enough to be fresh, familiar enough to be comfortable. Definitely reccomend.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Now That's Entertainment

    I liked the first book. It was a well developed world with exceptional characters. The second book made me laugh out loud numerous times. It is so good that I am making my friends read the first one just so they can read the second one. None have been disappointed. If you like humor and adventure on a grand scale then read both.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 5, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Lynch does it again!

    Scott Lynch has done it again! He has brought me to the world of Camorr and left me wanting so much more. The adventures of Locke Lamora continue in this fantastic sequel. While at times Lynch's plot seems to get a bit convoluted, it definitely keeps you on the edge of your seat. The depth of Locke's character as well as the others make them feel like real people. The storyline of grand larceny and revenge are fantastic! This is quite the page turner, and I eagerly await the continuation of Locke's story!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    a reviewer

    Con artists Locke Lamora and Jean Tannen plan to swindle the renowned gambling house, Sinspire. Tight security makes any attempt futile and cheating breaks the first commandment, which if caught also means break the felon¿s bones as death is the response to the worst crime anyone can commit.----------------- However, Locke and Jean feel they have a perfect scheme so they are in the city state of Tal Verra completing their final preparations. However, someone knows what the two thieves plot to do and is determined to insure they not fail but are caught. Let the games begin because Locke and Jean will not allow an unknown adversary prevent their latest caper from succeeding.-------------------- Locke and Jean are quite the pair as these bold con artists work on a scheme that seems impossible and made even more difficult by their enemy. The fast-paced story line is at its best when the two thieves, their opponent, and the casino staff work towards a final altercation even as the audience expects the antiheroes to succeed (need to read to see if they actually do), but not know how they can pull off the ploy. Although there are well written epic sea battles with pirates, that sidebar feels like an intruder as this fantasy belongs to the scam.---------------- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 25, 2013

    Very much recommended!

    This is a great stand alone book, although it is the follow-up to Scott Lynch's book "The Lies of Locke Lamora" and I think it fares better if you've read that book first. "Red Seas Under Red Skies is full of interesting, well-developed characters, takes place in a fascinating world, and is an example of exciting and skilled storytelling. A very fun read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 14, 2013

    The second volume in the Gentlemen Bastards series follows a pat

    The second volume in the Gentlemen Bastards series follows a pattern much like that of book one. The story picks up almost immediately where the first one ended. On that note I will say that if you've yet to read "The Lies of Locke Lamora" do not read any further, as the are spoilers for that book the are necessary for the review of this volume.

    Goodreads Description / Blurb:

    In his highly acclaimed debut, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Scott Lynch took us on an adrenaline-fueled adventure with a band of daring thieves led by con artist extraordinaire Locke Lamora. Now Lynch brings back his outrageous hero for a caper so death-defying, nothing short of a miracle will pull it off.
    After a brutal battle with the underworld that nearly destroyed him, Locke and his trusted sidekick, Jean, fled the island city of their birth and landed on the exotic shores of Tal Verrar to nurse their wounds. But even at this westernmost edge of civilization, they can't rest for long—and are soon back to what they do best: stealing from the undeserving rich and pocketing the proceeds for themselves.

    This time, however, they have targeted the grandest prize of all: the Sinspire, the most exclusive and heavily guarded gambling house in the world. Its nine floors attract the wealthiest clientele—and to rise to the top, one must impress with good credit, amusing behavior... and excruciatingly impeccable play. For there is one cardinal rule, enforced by Requin, the house's cold-blooded master: it is death to cheat at any game at the Sinspire.

    Brazenly undeterred, Locke and Jean have orchestrated an elaborate plan to lie, trick, and swindle their way up the nine floors... straight to Requin's teeming vault. Under the cloak of false identities, they meticulously make their climb—until they are closer to the spoils than ever.

    But someone in Tal Verrar has uncovered the duo's secret. Someone from their past who has every intention of making the impudent criminals pay for their sins. Now it will take every ounce of cunning to save their mercenary souls. And even that may not be enough...



    Now that you have a general idea of the overall plot, let's talk about what worked for me in the second book of this series, as well as what didn't. . .

    Once again Lynch is able to make you feel the characters' emotions instead of just reading about them. Even through all the chaos surrounding them, the emotions of each character are the driving force. The pain & heartbreak felt by both Locke and Jean remains a palpable force, returning the reader to the excruciating and heartrending condition both men were in at the end of the first book. As much as I appreciate Lynch's ability to craft scenes that keep the reader's emotional state in a twist throughout, this time around there were only a few times that he moved our two heroes out of one emotional state at all.

    Locke was a survivor and natural leader in book one, impossible to suppress for any length of time. Yet as after the dust settles from the climax in "The Lies of Locke Lamora," he has become just a ghost of the vibrant character I had come to love and admire. As he sinks further and further into depression and self-pity it falls on Jean to take up the mantle of leadership. This part is great, as Jean gets to grow into himself via his heavily increased storyline. Lynch makes it easy for the reader to identify with Jean, for most of us have taken care of someone sick who becomes intractable, cranky, and just plain obnoxious at some point during their illness or recovery.

    After everyone suffers through Locke's first round of illness and/or depression the men get back into the game. Forced to flee Camorra they focus their attention and numerous talents on possibly the toughest job in the known world, breaking into the vaults of the Sinspire. The Sinspire, in the city of Tal Verrar, is the most exclusive gaming house in the known world. And it certainly didn't get to the top being run by a halfwit. While Requin is a power to be reckoned with it is his majordomo Selendri that is the more formidable of the pair. Selendri is one of the first strong female characters Lynch introduces, bring a bit more balance and appeal for female readers. Up to this point the story is cruising along and remains fun and interesting without becoming stale, which could have easily happened since the two men are basically doing the same thing they did back in Camorra - only the scenery and players have changed. Then it is almost as if Lynch became bored with his own storyline and decided to write an entirely different book, forcing Locke and Jean to assume an entirely new career, choosing to place them in a position of imbalance where they lack their suave surety and belief in their own abilities. At the same time they are undergoing this reversal of fortune they must pull off one of their most dramatic schemes yet in order to convince those around them that the two men know exactly what they are doing in the role which they have been cast.

    While the book suddenly feels somewhat schizophrenic in regard to the storyline, the change does at least introduce us to some great female leaders. Zamira, the notorious pirate who runs her ship the 'Poison Orchid' with an iron fist, yet sails with her two small children aboard while she is busy sacking any hapless ship that has the misfortune of crossing her path. For all her fearsome reputation Jean & Locke have a chance to learn another trade they can add to their already substantial arsenal of abilities. Then there is the petite but fiery Ezri, Zamira's first-mate. Though possessed of small frame, she is a dynamo that can kick ass with the best of them, and she certainly isn't shy about taking what she wants - in this case Jean. And of course there is Selendri from the Sinspire, a force to be reckoned with for even the most powerful of men. As things continue to somehow mysteriously go wrong for the pair the story-line becomes more and more convoluted as Lynch works to blend the original two seemingly separate story-lines into one cohesive tale.

    By the end of the book Lynch manages to pull all his threads together to weave a more complete tapestry than I expected, yet it still didn't feel quite as seamless as the first book in the series. However the ending is a fiendish piece of work, reminiscent of the disastrous end to "The Lies of Locke Lamora."

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 7, 2012

    Wonderful

    Amazing sequel! I couldnt put it down and anxiously wait the nexr!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 8, 2012

    Not Recommended - boring

    Tideous monologue of banter between main character. Skips around too much. Tiresome time following where the author is going for the main point. Hard time keeping my attention.

    1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 18, 2010

    Awesome adventure!

    One of the best adventure books I've read. It had me laughing out loud and teary eyed at parts. I loved all the characters and Locke and Jean were better than the dynamic duo! I can't wait to read his next book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 15, 2014

    absolutely love this series.  love the unique story line, love t

    absolutely love this series.  love the unique story line, love the wit, humor, characters.  intelligently written.!
    one of my top favorite series. 

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  • Posted January 25, 2014

    Even better than The Lies Of Locke Lamora. Could not put this bo

    Even better than The Lies Of Locke Lamora. Could not put this book down. Read in two long sittings. Great descriptions Great Characters and an awesome plot.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 14, 2014

    Abby

    Love and miss you forever

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2014

    Bo

    Hey im on miss you too

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    To stacy

    I u wanna explore the world of forbidden lov to another woman go to "moans" result one ;)

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Adam

    I pull your shirt off and i ramm my monster up ur pus.sy and start thrusting hard and fast already vummi.ng "oh you will be punished you dirty sl.ut"

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 4, 2013

    Loved it

    '

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2013

    Brilliant!

    I love this series! One of the best I've read in a long, long while.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2013

    Wow

    I loved the first book, Locke and Jean are now two of my favorite characters. Their moral is gray and they wear it well. The plot twists and surprises kept me wanting to read more! I can't wait for the next book to find out what's next!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2013

    Awesome

    Love the series

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2013

    Great book

    A great follow-up to the first book. Readers get to experience another great story in a completely different part of the same world. Funny like the first book and just an all-around great read. Waiting impatiently for the next book of the series.

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