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Unraveling Secrets and Shadows: Navigating the Deceptive Labyrinths of “The Lies of Locke Lamora” by Scott Lynch

book review

Scott Lynch’s debut novel, The Lies of Locke Lamora, thrusts readers into a world of rogue adventurers, outrageous heists, and elaborate scams. It’s a realm where mystery, humor, and high-stakes action convolve – anchored by a charmingly devious protagonist.


Locke Lamora, an orphaned child raised by thieves, grows up to become the infamous Thorn of Camorr – a mastermind conman. Along with his Gentlemen Bastards, he robs the rich nobles of the city. While keeping up the facade as a small-time thief for the city’s Crime Lord, Locke’s lies coalesce into trouble as he finds himself in the middle of a murderous plot that threatens his tight-knit band and the city of Camorr itself.

Notable Quotes:

“There’s no freedom quite like the freedom of being constantly underestimated.”

“When you can’t cheat the game, you’d best find a means to cheat the players.”

  1. “A man’s soul or lack of one will always betray him, eventually.”
  2. “Concentrate on what cannot lie. The evidence.”
  3. “I’ve got kids that enjoy stealing. I’ve got kids that don’t think about stealing one way or the other, and I’ve got kids that just tolerate stealing because they know they’ve got nothing else to do. But nobody–and I mean nobody–has ever been hungry for it like this boy. If he had a bloody gash across his throat and a physiker was trying to sew it up, Lamora would steal the needle and thread and die laughing…”
  4. “There is a fundamental connection between seeming and being. Every Fae child knows this, but you mortals never seem to see. We understand how dangerous a mask can be. We all become what we pretend to be.”
  5. “Killing him is the gift that keeps on taking.”

These quotes capture both the savagely pragmatic and unapologetically humorous spirit of the novel and its characters. It’s a testament to the novel’s ability to navigate both intense drama and sharp wit with equal tact.


Lynch’s world is grimy and gritty, filled with inherent danger and suspense. The city of Camorr, built on the ruins of an alien civilization, brims with a certain ethereal, gothic charm. The highly developed, intricately violent underworld it forms the backdrop for captivates readers to the last page.

The Lies of Locke Lamora is marked by a non-linear narrative using interludes. These shifts in time, while initially disjointed, ultimately flesh out the character backgrounds and their modus operandi beautifully.

At the heart of this world is the witty, audacious, yet gloriously flawed Locke Lamora, whose antics walk the line between audacious genius and suicidal folly. The novel is a testament to the capacity of characterization and plot weaving, delightful in its malicious twist and turns.

Gentleman Bastard Series Titles in Order

1. The Lies of Locke Lamora (2006)

The Lies of Locke Lamora is the first book in the series, where we meet Locke Lamora and his Gentlemen Bastards. Left orphaned and raised by thieves, this cunning protagonist and his group scheme to steal from the city’s wealthiest nobles.

2. Red Seas Under Red Skies (2007)

In this sequel, an ill-fated adventure coerces Locke and his partner, Jean, to become pirates. They navigate treacherous seas, old and new enemies, and, of course, constantly changing allegiances while devising a grand heist.

3. The Republic of Thieves (2013)

This installment continues with Locke at death’s door with only one chance for survival: working for an enemy. It becomes further complicated when he crosses paths with a love from his past at a political game that may decide the future of an empire.

4. The Thorn of Emberlain (TBA)

This yet-to-be-released installment promises to continue the misadventures of everyone’s favorite con artist, Locke Lamora. Many believe this next chapter will take us on an exciting journey full of clever audacity, unpredictability, and satisfyingly intricate plots that have become Scott Lynch’s trademark.


The Lies of Locke Lamora is less a novel and more a mischievous, rollicking journey through scams, schemes, and one rogue’s ploys for survival. It’s a delightful kaleidoscope of cunning, camaraderie, and the charmingly criminal, all under the atmospheric lure of Camorr. Delve into Lynch’s brilliantly deceptive world – just keep one hand on your wallet.

4.5/5 stars

Author Bio

Scott Lynch is an American fantasy author, best known for his Gentleman Bastard series of novels. Since the release of his debut novel, The Lies of Locke Lamora, Lynch has made his mark on the fantasy genre with his unique approach to storytelling and unforgettable characters.

FAQs or Book Club Questions

  1. How does the novel utilize humor amidst its grim setting and high stakes?
  2. Discuss the relationship dynamics within the Gentlemen Bastards.
  3. How does the author use the interludes and non-chronological storytelling to enhance the narrative?

Where to Buy

Dive into the deceitful, daring world of The Lies of Locke Lamora here on Amazon

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