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The Blacktongue Thief

(Blacktongue #1)

4.48  ·  Rating details ·  89 ratings  ·  62 reviews
Kinch Na Shannack owes the Takers Guild a small fortune for his education as a thief, which includes (but is not limited to) lock-picking, knife-fighting, wall-scaling, fall-breaking, lie-weaving, trap-making, plus a few small magics. His debt has driven him to lie in wait by the old forest road, planning to rob the next traveler that crosses his path.

But today, Kinch Na S
Hardcover, 416 pages
Expected publication: May 25th 2021 by Tor Books
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Kate Mooneyham Just started the ARC. Not YA. Adult for sure, with the humor Chris has in his Renaissance Festival gigs.
Meredith Katz
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Average rating 4.48  · 
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Apr 05, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
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ARC provided by the publisher—Tor Books & Gollancz—in exchange for an honest review.

4.5/5 stars

The Blacktongue Thief is an immense entertainment manifesting in a fantasy novel.

Christopher Buehlman is most often known for Between Two Fires and more horror novels; this is about to change very quickly. The Blacktongue Thief is the first book in Blacktongue trilogy by Buehlman, it is his first high fantasy novel, and fro
Robin Hobb
Jul 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The usual caveat: I received an Advance Reading Copy of this book, for free, from the publisher. I do not know Cristopher Buehlman. I do not believe that receiving a free copy of the book has influenced this review.

Note to readers: While this book is the first of a trilogy, I found it to be a satisfactory stand alone read.

There is a standard list of things that make me enjoy a book: Good characterization, a compelling plot, a well developed setting, a system of magic that works, a minimum of plo
Nicholas Eames
May 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Holy hell this was awesome. So funny, so harrowing, so endlessly inventive. Almost every page made me laugh or wonder at some phenomenally clever turn-of-phrase. I cannot wait to see where the story goes from here.
ARC provided by the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange of an honest review!

Kinch is one of the funniest characters I have ever read!
James Tivendale
Apr 06, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fantasy, freecopy
I received an uncorrected proof copy of The Blacktongue Thief in exchange for an honest review. Thanks go to Christopher Buehlman and Gollancz.

I've had my eye on The Blacktongue Thief for a while, with friends referring to it as the book they were looking forward to the most in 2021, and the ratings by reviewers I trust all coming back extremely positive. When a review copy arrived on my doorstep I decided to try it next to see if it lived up to the hype. Although to me, it won't quite be a bes
Oct 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’ve struggled with how to start this review of Christopher Buehlman’s The Blacktongue Thief because I want to give it the recognition it deserves. So I’ll just go with this: it’s damn fine reading. I loved it.

Kinch Na Shannack is a thief-in-training with a couple of tricks up his sleeve, which might not matter much considering how far behind he is in student loans. And the debtors just happen to be the most powerful, far-reaching organization in the world. But Kinch has a chance to dig his way
Oct 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Rating: 10/10

Thanks to the publisher and author for an advance reading copy of The Blacktongue Thief ( #1) for review consideration. This did not influence my thoughts or opinions.

The Blacktongue Thief is… astonishing. Buehlman has raised the bar on what makes a special fantasy debut, and not since Kings of the Wyld by Nicholas Eames have I been so enamored from cover to cover. Absolutely brilliant.

People. I literally do not know where to begin. I’ve seen this book talked about for almost a year
Mar 30, 2021 rated it it was amazing
4.5/5 but I'll round it up.

I’ve read everything Buehlman had published and loved all of it. To say I had high expectations for his fantasy debut would be an understatement of the year. To my relief (and delight!), Buehlman has delivered. Big time.

The Blacktongue Thief follows Kinch Na Shannack, an indebted thief who travels through a crime-ridden world in the company of a veteran knight, a witch in-training, and a blind rescue cat. Decades-long war with goblins wiped out a significant part of h
Jan 18, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, arc, tor, dark-fantasy
Christopher Buelhman is a favorite author of mine, but I've been caught up with his work for a while now. When I saw this was coming out soon, I jumped on the chance for an ARC and here we are. To be honest? I think this is the best thing he's written so far!

Kinch Na Shannack is a black-tongue thief. He's still in training, but for now, he's in debt, (we'll call them student loans), and if he doesn't pay up soon, his future is uncertain. Until he pays those debts, he's forced to wear a tattoo o
Brian Naslund
Sep 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with Kinch on page one. He's a hilarious narrator and I was also touched by his sensitivity. Christopher's world building is unique, precise, and masterfully woven into a page-turning story. I couldn't put it down.

There's joyful mischief dripping off almost every page, but also darker elements. Many of the characters carry deep physical and mental scars from the hard-won goblin wars, and the consequences of those horrors are both tragic and heartfelt. Fans of Nicholas Eames and Jo
Library of a Viking
“I was about to die. Worse, I was about to die with bastards.”

The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Buehlman is one of the most anticipated fantasy releases in 2021. This book has almost been unanimously praised, and as of 07.04.21, has a staggering 4.58 rating on Goodreads! Seeing all the praise for this book made me excited! So did this book live to the hype? Well, let’s talk about it.

The Blacktongue Thief follows Kinch Na Shannack, who owes a fortune to the Takers Guild. Kinch is a thief with
Oct 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was given an Advanced Reading Copy of this book, for free, by the publisher.

The Blacktongue Thief concerns Kinch Na Shannack, a thief in hock to his guild for the training he received to serve them. After a pack of highwaymen that he’s fallen in with are slaughtered by a magic-wielding lady knight, Kinch flees back to his guild, desperate for a way to square up his deepening debt. He’s give a mysterious mission—to join the very same lady knight who decimated his highway companions on her ques
Feb 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing
To preface: I had gotten an Advance Reader's Copy of this book from a giveaway on here! This has in no way influenced my rating here.

I loved this book. The main protagonist Kinch has become one of my favorites, definitely one of the best rogue protagonists in any fantasy I've read, even giving Royce and Hadrian a run for their money. He is hilarious, has an excellent way of delivering information and describing the scenery, and is also a very believable character with many flaws and a bit of a
In some ways, this book is less of an adventure tale than a slow unfolding disaster. It's full of extremely good characters, some of them likeable. It features an original and deeply interesting world, one that struggles with the aftermath of a series of cataclysmic goblin wars. For me, Kinch joins the pantheon of impossibly charismatic narrators -- Locke Lamora, Orhan the engineer, Kvothe the wizard -- and I love that kind of storytelling, so I loved this book.

Advanced Reader's Copy provided by
Paul Kennedy
Jan 10, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Great Characters! Fantastic world building. Laugh out loud hilarious at times. Action packed.
And magic. Lots of really cool magic.

Everything you could hope for in a fantasy novel.

Loved it!
Buy it.
Read it.
Edward Cox
Nov 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fast-paced and action-packed, funny and adventurous - great fantasy fun.
Arundeepak Jayaseelan
Mar 21, 2021 rated it really liked it

A huge thanks to the publisher and author for approving my ARC request in Netgalley and it doesn't in any capacity affect my review at all.

The only thing that may have influenced my review is that GORGEOUS cover. I mean, come on... You gotta give an extra star just for that.

The cover was the first thing that piqued my intrest along with the premise which was quiet unique. The Thief who has to pay a student loan stumbles apon an adventure is something I've never heard before. So, I requested
Note: I received this ARC from Tor Books in exchange for an honest review. Thank you, Tor!

Here's what you should read while you're missing your Renaissance Faire.

THE BLACKTONGUE THIEF is the story of a thief who can't pay back a debt to his guild. He's given a no-questions-asked assignment to travel with a handmaid of death into a country under attack by giants and await orders. Along the way, the two travelers amass a motley crew: a blind cat who may be more than it seems, a witch, and a sailor
Feb 07, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2021, giveaways
**Won an ARC of this book in a giveaway. Thanks to Goodreads, the publisher, and the author for giving me the chance to get my hands on this book***

This book took me by surprise. I remember picking it because it sounded interesting but I honestly didn't know anything about it or the author. When I first started it I was thrown into a world I knew nothing about. It took a few chapters for me to get the lay of the land and start to grasp who our main characters were. Once I got about 20 percent in
Emma Cathryne
Thank you to NetGalley and Tor/Forge for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.

This book defied my expectations, but not in the direction I'd expected. I think the biggest thing that tripped me up is that this book's bawdy, bloody humor was VERY much not my thing. Fans of grimdark fantasy and nonstop jokes about bodily functions will probably find a lot to love here, but the style threw me really off-kilter and kept me from enjoying it as much as I might have, It makes a lot of sense that Bu
Kate Mooneyham
Aug 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Christopher has created a wonderful new fantasy world. It has a familiar feel, so you settle right in with your new friends, yet it is oh so inventive. I really loved the writing style, and and looking forward to more books in this series.
Oct 12, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Excellent turns of phrase and worldbuilding throughout, but I never really connected to the main character. Love his traveling companion Galva, though. She has a horse-sized raven. It's awesome. I'll be interested to read the sequel, though I fear it will move away from the roguish story told here. ...more
Galleywampus -
Sep 18, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Irreverent narrative voice, unique protagonist, a lot of strong women, and a cool riding bird.
Mark Redman
Apr 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Blacktongue Thief by Christopher Beuhlman. Readers are always told don’t judge a book by its cover. I suspect that most of us do without realising it. That was certainly the case for me with The Blacktogue Thief. The striking black and yellow cover illustration instantly drew my attention.

The synopsis instantly piqued my interest from the very first page. I warmed to the charismatic Kinch Na Shannack straight away. Kinch, who unfortunately owes the Takers Guild a small fortune for his educa
Ahmed Rivera
Mar 27, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: giveaways
5 stars - Excellent book / I highly recommend
4 stars - Very good book / I recommend
3 stars - Good book / I would recommend to specific individuals with specific interests
2 stars - meh! / the book is not my cup of tea
1 star - I do not see forcing myself to finish a book I am really not liking at all. As such, I would most definitively DNF it.

My Rating: 5 stars

First, I would like to thank Goodreads and the publisher (Tor) for providing me with the opportunity to have read an uncorrected advance co
Sarah (thegirltheycalljones)
Mar 17, 2021 marked it as to-read
Shelves: fantasy, thief
Description of the book : "Set in a world of goblin wars, stag-sized battle ravens, and assassins who kill with deadly tattoos"


Please, Netgalley, please please please let me get this arc... IT HAS STAG-SIZED BATTLE RAVENS. You can't say that and expect people NOT to lose their shit.
Feb 20, 2021 rated it really liked it
This was a lot of fun. A very original and entertaining fantasy story from an established horror writer. The storyline was relentless, moving from one fascinating locale to the next, with action (and violence) that was written with what I assume to be a horror writer's attention to bloody detail. While I occasionally felt the side characters weren't as fleshed out as they deserved, the narrator's voice, a combination of wry weariness and cagey hopefulness, really held this together and kept me r ...more
Lydia Wallace
Mar 08, 2021 rated it it was amazing
What a good book which I enjoyed greatly. I wanted to read more when I finished this book. Great characters, setting and plot. A world of magic that works. The ending was fabulous. Also very funny and adventurous. Hurry and write another issue because I will buy it. I highly recommended this book to my friends and family. My 43 year old son is reading it now and loves it. Thanks Christopher Buehlman for such a great story.

Jasmin Brooks
Jan 26, 2021 rated it it was amazing
It may be a bit early in the year to call it, but I'll be surprised if another book comes along in 2021 that can top this. So so good. ...more
Mar 30, 2021 rated it liked it
The Blacktongue Thief – Christopher Buehlman

So what’s the book about?

After a band of highwaymen joined by Kinch Na Shannack is slaughtered by a magic-gifted knight, he does not know how to repay his debt to the thieves' guild, because he’s getting no money for his failed job. Kinch is a thief who, having completed his training, now owes the guild a large sum of money. He has to find a way to pay off his debt and therefore he’s returning to the guild to find another thrilling job. But this day, K
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“Shall we journey East together?"
She considered me. "What will you do for me?"
"It's what we'll do for each other."
"So tell me."
"I'll watch while you sleep. Sleep while you watch. I'll lie to you when it doesn't matter, but I'll also lie for you when it does. If you let me do the talking, I'll make sure you miss the penny-cock with the pizzle-itch and get the best wine in the merchant's barrel. You'll never again meet a door you can't get through nor a wall you can't get eyes over. I need your arms, yes, but you need my nose. If you do the worst of the fighting, I'll make sure you know where your foes are coming from and cull the weak ones. I won't be your dog, but if you are half the wolf I think you are, you've found a fox to run with.”
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