Publisher: Del Rey
Publishing Date: October 2013
Publishers Description: Magi political elections are imminent, and the factions are in need of a pawn. If Locke agrees to play the role, sorcery will be used to purge the venom from his body—though the process will be so excruciating he may well wish for death. Locke is opposed, but two factors cause his will to crumble: Jean’s imploring—and the Bondsmage’s mention of a woman from Locke’s past: Sabetha. She is the love of his life, his equal in skill and wit, and now, his greatest rival.
Review: This is the third novel in this series, and perhaps the last? I am kicking my unaware ass right now as I missed out on the first two novels in this series. This novel picks up on the life saga of Locke, the "Oliver Twist" in an alternate reality. There are quite a few parallels to the Dickens novel that are more interesting to note, than shamefully replicative. I think the author is paying homage' to the great writer.
The author makes visualizing the scenes effortless and is wholly remarkable. The story-line interleaves with the scenes and character development to create a seamless work that moves forward with rapidity. You want to keep reading, it is that good. The cover might be confusing, in that it is most likely a scene from "The Republic of Thieves" play, that our Gentlemen Bastards enact as part of the novel. I think the cover art was more expedience than actual invested thought into what would best depict the entirety of the novel. Below I have posted the other two covers that were published. Not quite there with any of them. You decide.
This is a very long novel, (about 800 pages) and well worth it. I initially gave this one of my highest reviews when I was halfway through it. I have adjusted my rating down a couple of tenths due to some lengthy acting diatribe, that I think was more self-indulgent authorship than really critical to the story-line. Perhaps I will order the first two in the series as a determinate in addition to the author getting a haircut.