June 21st, 2008

book - key

Herding Cats Review: The Lies of Locke Lamora

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch is my fourth book for the tl;dr challenge, rec'd by not_cynical and thornsmoke, and then talked up so convincingly by lassarina that it had to jump to the head of the line.

I enjoyed it, quite a lot; it kept me turning the pages and picking it back up when I really ought to have been doing other things, and there are some really winning characters in here. Lynch makes you think he's giving you a straightforward, fun, thrill-ride caper story, and then he sneaks up behind you and punches you in the gut, and rather than being a jarring tone shift, it just draws you in even more. Very effective. Pretty tightly written, too -- Lynch takes great care to make sure that you see all the guns on the walls, presented just casually enough that you forget they're there until someone fires them. The structure is interesting, going back and forth between the main narrative and "interludes" that are sometimes flashbacks and sometimes infodumps on the world and the people in it. This also could have been jarring, but for me it worked; I liked getting Locke's backstory and more context without having to contrive reasons for people to talk about them. Thumbs up. I will definitely be acquiring the sequel once it's out in paperback next month.