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Wicked Bronze Ambition

(Garrett Files #14)

4.08  ·  Rating details ·  1,073 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Garrett is a human detective in the fantastical city of TunFaire. And now he’s getting tangled up in the worst sort of laws...


Garrett is set to stow his wandering heart with his fiancée, Strafa Algarda. But for Garrett, even true love comes with its share of headaches—namely, the Algarda family.

Strafa’s family needs Garrett’s unique skills in the worst way.
Mass Market Paperback, 485 pages
Published July 2nd 2013 by Roc
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George If your conclusions are correct, as I think they probably are, Garrett will have filed the situation under "Insane things Hill folk do" and left it at…moreIf your conclusions are correct, as I think they probably are, Garrett will have filed the situation under "Insane things Hill folk do" and left it at that. I don't suppose he feels a need to take action on anyone's behalf.

Compare his relationship with the deeply scary Constance Algardas.(less)

Community Reviews

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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  1,073 ratings  ·  70 reviews

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Jul 10, 2013 rated it it was ok
Let me preface by saying that I love the Garrett series. I liked him when he was a head-thumping alcoholic, and I still like him as he’s becoming less of a smartass and more of an adult. I liked his riotous, 12-book affair with Tinnie Tate, and I like that he’s moved on, left her behind and gotten engaged.

...and this book was almost a complete disappointment.

Here's why:
(view spoiler)
Melissa McShane
Apr 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is going to be one of my favorite Garrett novels once I read it for the second time. It was so stressful the first time that I kept having to put it down to catch my breath. Good interaction between our old favorite characters, an interesting story and more of Garrett bulling through all problems to a solution. So why was it stressful?

(view spoiler)
Nov 03, 2012 rated it did not like it
Seriously, WTF!

This was a rambling mess. Cook seemed to feel the need to parade every single secondary in the series in front of us for their two minutes of fame. The plot was a long meandering string of gibberish that didn't even make any sense during the big reveal. This is a classic example of what happens when an author continues to write a story well past its natural end.

I was a fan of this series. Now I'm not sure if I will even read the next one.
Joel Neff
Jul 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
The Garrett, P.I. series has always been a fun one, and this latest book is no exception to that standing. At the same time, the action is a little off from previous volumes and the novel ends with an emotional sucker-punch that I'm not used to from Glen Cook.

On the plus side: this is a Garrett novel. It's funny, fast-paced, full of interesting characters and odd quirks and the vibrant, so-weird-I-want-to-go-there city of Tunfaire. I mean, if you liked the previous Garrett books, you're going to
Jul 03, 2013 rated it it was ok
Not the best in the series. Story went all over the place, and when it finished I was left with a feeling that I had wasted my time.
Matt Enlow
Apr 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Glen Cook knows how to pull at the heart strings with this book. It had me sobbing by the end.
Xenophon Hendrix
Jul 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
I was glad to see another Garrett novel, but this one just wanders around a lot without much happening.
Ben Truong
Wicked Bronze Ambition is the fourteenth and final book in the Garrett P.I. series written by Glen Cook and centered on the adventures private investigator Garrett.

Garrett's fiancé, Strafa Algarda, was born on the Hill and his soon-to-be family-in-law is filthy rich. They are all sorcerers too, and that puts them in a tight spot, because someone has it out for them or rather, their children and grandchildren.

A grand underground tournament has been set up and is meant to be a battle-royale type:
Parag Kapadia
Oct 29, 2018 rated it liked it
Some notes: Firstly, while this is a review of WBA, it's also going to pull in my opinions on some of the other books, and the series as a whole too.

Also, spoilers all over the place for the entire series.

I really like the Garrett files. At least, i liked what they used to be.

I think what ended up happening was that a lot of little niggling frustrations i'd collected and subsequently forgave throughout the series, just came to a head for me and made getting through this book an absolute slog;
Paul Harvey
Feb 04, 2014 rated it really liked it
I like the characters and the humorous tone of the series, even when interlaced with the seriousness of the mysteries. Yet this feels like the weakest book in the series to date. I'm not sure if that's the lead character maturing, or the writer stretching the stories out. With luck, the next book will help establish if this is a book that reestablished a direction or merely a story that needs to end.
Jul 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Glen Cook is one of my favorite authors and his "Garrett" is one of my favorite fantasy series. This book as with the others in this series was a great read. For fans of fantasy and/or detective novels this is a must read.
Jul 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: x-kindle
I think Garrett and Strafa will be ok, but I'm worried about the Dead Man.
David Caldwell
Mar 20, 2018 rated it liked it
A magical contest is threatening the young of the more wealthy families in Tunfaire. Garret's new family ties have dragged him into the conflict. Now , he and his friends and a few other assorted allies have to stop the madness before too many people are killed. Plots within plots within plots will have to be untamgled to get to the truth.

I have followed this series for many years. It is one of the original fantasy noir series to mix magic and hard boiled mysteries. It is very good at what it
Jim Carleton
Nov 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone who has read the previous 13 novels.
Not the best of the series, but not the worst by any means. Either way, this appears to be the *last* of the series :-( It's been six years since this was published. In the past, a new Garrett, P.I. novel showed up every 18 months or so. Sad, but every well runs dry, eventually.

For a novel that had very little real action, at least compared to the earliest novels in the series, this moved pretty fast for me. Lots of delving into characters not given much time in the past, as well as areas of
Steve Howarth
May 16, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: glen-cook
Not often does a story end where it requires the reader to make leaps in knowledge and understanding of the bits and pieces found in the chapters. Our hero, so it appear, has so much sorrow heaped upon him, it appears it will never end. The joy of the story comes but it is difficult to see all that and if what the ending produces is what we would hope for. A follow up book that would provide a definitive answer would be nice, but maybe it will never happen. A very good read.
Nov 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book punches hard.
I don't want to spoil anything, but it happens around page 50 and after that I am hooked, I can't stop reading. It also kinda hurts.
Still the last pages of the book, ending is weak.

It might be the best book in the series.
Nov 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction, 2016
Weirdly abrupt ending, that doesn't offer any of the emotional payoff the rest of the book had been building up to. Other than that not too bad a story.
May 12, 2014 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rasmus Skovdal
Sep 11, 2016 rated it liked it
I usually dislike 'urban fantasy' series that run too long, or that stray too close to the tropes of that sub-genre as they are almost universally terrible. I'll spare you a rant about Jim Butcher, here.

However, I can't help but like the Garrett series, even if we're now at 14 books with no real end in sight. There's just something oddly charming about them, and about Glen Cook's often peculiar, and quite stylish (not always good, mind you), way of writing.

Yeah, he runs afoul of some unfortunate
Jason Vanhee
Feb 19, 2017 rated it it was ok
A moderate improvement on the previous book, only the plot made less than no sense which in the end must count against the book and leave it at 2 stars. I find myself glad there aren't any more in the series.
Jul 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is the latest installment in Glen Cooks long running series Garrett P.I. Unlike the last book I read that was from a series I had read this was a pleasure to read and is a fine addition to the series. In this series we find out that Garrett is finally going to settle down and tie the knot with his true love, who he met in the last book of the series. This is the jumping off point for the usually Garrett story of intrigue, double dealings, and all kinds of derring do by the intrepid hero. ...more
This is the latest in the Garrett, P.I. series by author Glen Cook. Unfortunately, he has continued his habit of introducing into the story every single character ever found in any of his previous books in this series. Why he feels compelled to do so is a mystery to me. I have pointed out in other reviews how meaningless this practice really is. I liken it to Warner Brothers movie studios feeling compelled to include every character who had ever appeared in a Warner Brothers movie into their ...more
John Shaw
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Glen Cook has been one of
My favorite authors
For decades
Ever since I
First discovered
His Black Company
Novels(more later)
The Garrett, P. I.
Series is a wonderful
Mash up of
A hard boiled PI
And smart assed humour.
That shouldn’t work
But due to Cook’s
Genius it does.
Wonderfully so.
This is the 14th book
In the series.
Normally any series that
Long would be total shit.
But somehow
The characters continue
To grow but remain
Wonderfully clever.
The whole thing is heavily
Influenced by the classic
Nero Wolfe
Henry Lazarus
Dec 16, 2013 rated it it was ok
Glen Cook’s tales of a PI in a magical world continues with a tale of Wicked Bronze Ambition.(paper from Roc). Garrett who is the Archie to a literally dead Nero Wolf equivalent is, impossible to believe, engaged to a sorceress to be married. Then Straffa, his fiancee is shot out of the sky and someone is organizing an illegal Tournament of Swords using conscripted sorcerers to play. The winner apparently gets all the powers of the dead losers and becomes a demigod. Garrett and friends have to ...more
Rena McGee
Feb 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
In Wicked Bronze Ambition, Garret’s matrimonial plans are derailed by his in-laws. They need his help to uncover the “Operators” of a secret tournament that pits the children of the sorcerer families of TunFaire against each other in mortal combat. The prize is the accumulated power of the kids who were killed during the game, but no one wants to play. (Unfortunately, there is no way to opt out of the game once the Operators decide you’re going to be a contestant.) Garret’s job is to keep the ...more
C is for **censored**
Jan 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: e-books
The star rating given reflects my opinion within ‘the official goodreads rating system’.

1 star: Didn’t Like it
2 stars: It’s Okay
3 stars: Liked it
4 stars: Really Liked it
5 stars: It Was Amazing

I don’t really give a rat-fuck that there are some who think I ‘owe’ an explanation for my opinion. Nope, nada, and not sorry about it.

Sometimes I may add notes to explain what my opinions are based on, and sometimes I don’t. I do this for me, on my books, in my library and I don’t ‘owe’ any special
Joshua Simon
Jan 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Pretty big disappointment for me. I love Cook and the Garrett series. However, this is one of my least favorite. It was ok in spots, and the overall premise was good. However, the extremely weird (dogs?!?!) and forced ending brought down a book I was already on the fence about.

Part of why I think this was a let down is that the past couple of books showed some great character development and this one was a big step back. Lots of boneheaded decisions, even for Garrett. Plus, it's one thing for
Brett Bydairk
Oct 29, 2013 rated it really liked it
The latest, possibly the last, of the Garrett books. In this one, Garrett is older, no wiser, and on the brink of marriage, when something happens to disrupt those plans, and once again he must hit the mean streets to find Answers. He is forcibly reminded several times that he no longer works alone, but has friends and others who help and rely on him. He is dealing directly with those on the Hill, the residential area of the town's magicians, wizards and sorcerers. Plots within plots, plots ...more
Oct 31, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I would guess this is the last of the Garrett PI series, and a very good way to end. Glen Cook throughout the series took the brave decision to let his hero and associates grow and age, and Garrett is now quite a grown up.
This book is a little different from previous, with Garrett's new contacts and responsibilities with the sorcerors on the hill and his new soon to be wife, but all our favourites get their cameo, it does't feel forced to me, and the story is involving and clever.
Elevated to
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I miss Tinnie 6 24 Oct 16, 2015 06:49AM  
Garett to inherit Dead Man's powers 1 19 Aug 09, 2013 08:29PM  

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Glen Cook was born in New York City, lived in southern Indiana as a small child, then grew up in Northern California. After high school he served in the U.S. Navy and attended the University of Missouri. He worked for General Motors for 33 years, retiring some years ago. He started writing short stories in 7th grade, had several published in a high school literary magazine. He began writing with ...more

Other books in the series

Garrett Files (1 - 10 of 14 books)
  • Sweet Silver Blues (Garrett P.I., #1)
  • Bitter Gold Hearts (Garrett P.I., #2)
  • Cold Copper Tears (Garrett P.I., #3)
  • Old Tin Sorrows (Garrett Files, #4)
  • Dread Brass Shadows (Garrett Files, #5)
  • Red Iron Nights (Garrett Files, #6)
  • Deadly Quicksilver Lies (Garrett Files, #7)
  • Petty Pewter Gods (Garrett P.I., #8)
  • Faded Steel Heat (Garrett P.I., #9)
  • Angry Lead Skies (Garrett P.I., #10)
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