I greatly enjoyed The Lies of Locke Lamora, particularly for a first novel, but wasn’t sure if Scott Lynch’s Red Seas Under Red Skies would polish up the first-novel rough edges or be a sophomore slump. Turns out it’s the polishing one, and Lynch’s novel is probably the most entertaining book I’ve read yet this year.

Like the first Lamora novel, this one is told with chapters interweaving between the main timeline, beginning in media res, and flashbacks that explain how we got there from the end of the first novel. Also like the first novel, it centers on a caper (that doesn’t seem like quite the right word — heist? con? theft? plot?) that Lamora’s planning. And, again like the first novel, things do not go entirely as planned, with some serious consequences heading Locke’s way.

To say more than that is to spoil things, and I’m not going to spoil a damn thing more than I have to. This is just a plain ol’ excellent book, featuring characters you love spouting dialogue you laugh at while engaging in activities you thrill to in a world that intrigues. It’s the fantasy equivalent of Ocean’s Eleven, but deeper and more satisfying. Recommended to anyone who likes things that are awesome.


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