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The Republic of Thieves (Gentleman Bastard, #3)
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Book #3 > The Republic of Thieves Read Along Part V

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Susan (nrlymrtl) | 16 comments So we are finally here at the end of The Republic of Thieves. *sniffle* Our host this week is Tethyan Books, if you would like to visit the blogosphere to see what everyone thought of the book:

Major spoilers for the book, and the series, reside below!

In Espara…

1. The Republic of Thieves: It’s the first and final performance! What did you think of the play? Were you entertained, or eager to get on with the rest of the story? Also, how do you feel about how the play fits in the novel, in terms of the story and the characters who play the parts?

2. The Other Performance: Of course, the GB and company had another important performance to get through—the one that ensures none of them end up hanged! What was your favorite part of this scheme? Do you agree with their plan for dealing with Moncraine’s treachery?

In Karthain…

3. The Election: It seems Lovaris was indeed the final trick, and the election is over. Are you satisfied with how things turned out? Do you wish that the election had focused more on the political problems of Karthain, or are you satisfied with the mudslinging and pranks that went on between Locke and Sabetha?

4. The War: Do you have any speculation on what specific issues might have escalated the two Bondsmagi factions rivalry into this kind of violence? What do you think the surviving Bondsmagi will do next, with all their gathered money and knowledge?

5. Patience: Given the final revelation that Patience does hate Locke for what he did to the Falconer, what do you make of her behavior towards Locke throughout the book? Do you think her plan of vengeance is well suited to Locke? What do you make of the Black Amaranth story now, as well as the prophecy she threw on top?

6. The Epilogue: Speaking of vengeance, do you think the Falconer’s vengeance against his mother was merited or excessively cruel, given the circumstances? On that note, how do you feel about the Falconer’s transformation and possible status as a continuing villain?

7. Wrapping up: Thus ends the third book in the Gentleman Bastard sequence. How do you think it compares with the first two? In the end, do you prefer the Espara storyline or the Karthain storyline, or did you like them both equally?

Eric Zawadzki | 10 comments I finished this over the weekend and actually wrote about it a bit in my blog.

1) I thought the flashbacks were more interesting than the election job. The story of the play was entertaining without upstaging (ha!) the rest of the book. Sabetha in the leading role because of genuine cleverness and Locke in the leading role because of dumb luck is pretty much the way these two work, isn't it? And the twins as chorus, framing the story of Locke and Sabetha is also fitting, as from what little we've seen of them it appears they're often the group's ropers. Jean is a bit of an odd one, since he doesn't have a part in the play except behind the scenes. Possibly Lynch is playing with the idea that he's sort of the group's silent provider, but he's every bit as involved in their schemes. Possibly Lynch thought "let's not get too heavy-handed with the parallel between roles in the play and roles in the Gentleman Bastards, because that'll get cheesy really fast."

2) This was a lovely and maccabre bit of theater, and it was the highlight of the book for me. When picking favorite parts I'm torn between the "Boulidazi appears on stage" bit and the bath house scene.

3) This was a nice bit of misdirection and actually made good political sense. Some of the pranks were loads of fun and all, but it just didn't feel like it would reasonably have any political impact. We get allusions to a couple scandals, but no badger games, no propagandsa, and very little blackmail. I didn't expect that the story was ever going to be a focus on the political issues. The election existed for the purpose of entertaining the mages, and all the political party bosses were brainwashed to obey Locke and Sabetha. But no politicking at all? I must say I was a little disappointed by that.

4) I suspected that something was brewing, but I was surprised by the violence and suddenness of this. The disappearance of the magi is likely to create more problems than it solves, to be honest. If the point of the Bondsmagi was to prevent mages from doing too much magic worldwide, the disappearance of the ones enforcing those rules isn't exactly going to further that goal.

5) I don't believe the Black Amaranth story - or at least not the one that involved the "creation" of Locke. Patience's revenge was fine for what it was (someone not used to being thwarted coming up with a petty sort of vengeance), but it's nothing on the "leave all your plans in ruins" revenge the Bastards wreaked in Books 1 and 2.

I'm less a fan of prophecies in fantasy with every passing year. They've become heavy-handed foreshadowing with neon lights and blaring sirens. The Greeks got away with it because they always found a way to use them to confound expectations instead of confirming them, but even that has been beaten to death in this genre. I'm a fan of foreshadowing. I just prefer some nuance.

6) I'll admit this is the first on-screen cybernetic transformation I've seen in the genre. *smirk* The Falconer was a good villain. I can see him rebooting the Bondsmagi in his image now that the "nice ones" have gone into the West, er, into hiding. It could be mishandled, but Lynch has comported himself well so far, so I'm sure it'll be awesome.

7) As I said in my blog, this book seemed like a "breather scene" in an action movie - something a little less tense and manic so that we don't get too blase about the big, bombastic heists that are Lynch's calling card. I'm not disappointed per se, but I'm looking forward to some more big heists and long cons.

Susan (nrlymrtl) | 16 comments Eric wrote: "I finished this over the weekend and actually wrote about it a bit in my blog.

1) I thought the flashbacks were more interesting than the election job. The story of the play was entertaining witho..."

Several folks, including myself, also felt a little disappointed in the lack of politics. We never even knew what the main issues for the city were, or even the main politicians except for the guy who tied it.

Ooo! Good point about the Magi. They enforced the rules, now they are gone. So who is going to keep all those mages in secret and upcoming mages in line? No one!

Part of me feels like this was the book to move the story forward to the next really important part (Book 4) and not all that important in and off itself. A 'breather' piece, as you said. Even with that said, I will be looking forward to Lynch's next book.

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