Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Red Seas Under Red Sky

I finished part two of the Locke Lamora series before I went on my holiday actually, but I haven't had the time to write about it until now. Be warned though, since this is part of a series the happenings of the second book heavily depend on what happens in the first. Thus this review will be quite spoilerish if you haven't read the first book yet.

In the second book we get to meet Locke Lamora and his slightly smaller gang in having moved to a new area of the world, all this because of events which unfolded in the first book. In many ways part two offers more of the same things, which is a good thing. Scott Lynch is a good writer, with a very vivid imagination and a strong will to make the story-telling adventurous in itself. In this book he takes the time and event jumping back and forth to an even higher level than in the first book. He still does it good though and for the most part I feel I follow in the events that unfold without becoming too confused. At some points he presents several timelines at once though, and that means you have to make some mental recapping before certain chapters to grasp what is happening.

Because of what happened in the first book this second book will revolve mostly around Locke and his bestest friend Jean Tannen. Alot of the story works around their dynamics as two quite different characters with the same goals (at least for most of the time). Also the plot is three times twisted around its own axis, even more so than in the first book where we got our first glance at Lynches habit to throw in unexpected events and happenings at every single corner. The reader will of course always know that at least one of the good guys has to survive the crazyness they get into, since there are five more books coming. This is something I mentioned already when reviewing the first book I think. But Lynch still makes one think "how the heck will they solve this one?" for most of the book, and some solutions (if you could call them that) are quite unexpected. Locke gets into tricky five-faced situations nearly all the time and really has to use all his wit to turn them to his advantage. This is what makes the book so intriguing, because you try to imagine how they will solve something and the answer is usually something completely else. One also knows that Lynch has no trouble whatsoever with having important characters die, which actually also adds to the suspense.

The story is well told all the way through with just enough action and plot twists to keep it interesting the whole way. The characters, and especially the two main characters, are thoughthrough with well built personalities that act in a believable way. Characters who's actions I don't understand tend to bother me the most in any story, but there is nothing of that here. Also this book offers are really great ending.

I always think the best credential for any book is if you want to read more. Scott Lynch has me wanting to read more about the Gentleman Bastards which has to mean he is doing a good job so far! So if you like action-filled, plot-twisting, multi-task-scamming set in a medieval milieu this is defnitiely something for you.

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