The Republic of Thieves Readalong, Part I

Grace 28 October, 2013 Readalongs 15 comments

Today is week one of the Republic of Thieves readalong, hosted by Andrea at Little Red Reviewer.  This week’s questions were written by S Voss over at Dab of Darkness.

This weeks’ questions cover up to but not including chapter 3.

1) We get to reminisce with several old friends in this section – Carlo, Galdo, Chains. How did you like this? Bitter sweet or happy dance?

I liked the flashbacks.  It’s almost like my favorite characters aren’t dead.  Oh wait.  Nope, still dead.

One of the scenes that struck me the most was after the ruse with Sabetha when Chains actually apologized to Locke for the trick he pulled and for not realizing the depth of Locke’s feelings when he arranged it.  I didn’t expect it, and thought that giving the vial to Sabetha of all people would demonstrate to Chains that Locke would do what was necessary to make the best of a horrible situation.  It was interesting to see Chains be the one who brought up his own fallibility and the limits of his perception.

2) Finally, the infamous Sabetha makes a physical appearance, albeit in Locke’s reminisces. What are your impressions? How do you think the romance, if there is to be one, will play out?

It’s so frickin’ adorable.  Poor little Locke has a crush.  Obviously Locke’s feelings last, considering that mentioning her still makes him upset, but something had to have happened to drive the two of them apart.  Betrayal?

3) After trying absolutely everything to save Locke, Jean still won’t give up. What did you think of that little pep talk he gave Locke concerning Patience’s offer of healing?

Go Jean! Locke needed to hear every word of it.  He can be a bit emo when he isn’t plotting a clever scheme to become fabulously wealthy.  Jean’s guilt trip was just the right medicine to bring him back to his old self.

4) Locke has a few caveats to working for the Bondsmage. Wise or just Locke grasping for some control over his life? What would you ask Patience?

I don’t think the Bondsmagi are trustworthy.  That’s part of why I’m so excited to see Locke and Jean work for Patience.  Locke is better and smarter than everybody else, but he’ll be on equal footing with the Bondsmagi.  Dare I say he may even be out of his depth?  I suspect that Bondsmagi are a bit like the fae, and that you need to explicitly state the terms of an agreement, otherwise they’ll heed the letter of your words and not the spirit of them.  I’m wondering if Locke was specific enough to prevent any funny business.

5) At the end of this section, we see that all is not as Patience laid it out. How much do you think Patience knows of the plot to off Locke and Jean? Do you see it interfering in the rigged election?

I can’t tell if she’s in on it or not.  It’s rather ambiguous since we don’t know the identity of the speakers.  Patience might be a backstabbing bitch, and that glimpse of vulnerability that she showed Jean might be an act to get him to do what she wants.  On the other hand, we already know that there will be multiple contestants in the Bondsmagi election arena, so perhaps this is just a small taste of what they’re up against.

Other thoughts:

Is anyone else extremely curious what it’s gonna take to get the poison out of Locke’s body?  Is this a scene best read on an empty stomach?


15 Responses to “The Republic of Thieves Readalong, Part I”

  1. Redhead

    Well, Chains is human too. He can’t be teaching his kids 24 hours a day, for a few minutes here and there, he needs to care about them. i think that apology goes a long way for Locke.

    LOL, Locke the emo drama king! he does like to make a scene, doesn’t he? it’s funny, because if someone did that in real life, it would be silly and rediculous. But in a book, it’s just right.

    Locke is mighty fast and mighty clever, but seems the Bondsmagi are past fast and clever. they can drop you in a second, before you even think “hey I should do something clever!”. And Patience has it on Locke, if he screws around, she’ll just torture Jean.

    • Grace

      Mhm. Before this book, I saw him as the underworld’s version of a Yoda or Dumbledore type figure. Seeing the apology made me think of him as more of an actual person.

      Locke is the sort of person who feels alienated from everyone around him, which makes him extremely prone to depression. I think part of it comes from being alone in his childhood, and part comes from hubris, but either way, he needs someone like Jean to make him snap out of it.

      I’m very curious about the Bondsmagi-election-rigging-battle-of-wits that’s coming up. It’s gonna be interesting.

      • Redhead

        yeah, you are right, Locke is very prone to moodiness and depression. and sometimes the cure for that (at least for emo moodiness) is to have our best friend show us how petty and silly and selfish we are being.

        I always saw Chains as a gangster-uncle type guy. he’ll buy me chocolate and take me to the carosel at the park, but he’s packing heat and always looking over his shoulder.

  2. Anonymous

    The more I read about Locke and Sabetha as children/adolescents, the more I get the sense that Sabetha would ditch Locke because he is capable of beating her intelligently thought-out plots and hard work with nothing more than his skill at improvising and sheer dumb luck. His puppyish qualities are going to be even more of a turn off if he hurts her pride!

  3. Genki Jason

    The more I read about Locke and Sabetha as children/adolescents, the more I get the sense that Sabetha would ditch Locke because he is capable of beating her intelligently thought-out plots and hard work with nothing more than his skill at improvising and sheer dumb luck. His puppyish qualities are going to be even more of a turn off if he hurts her pride!

    • Grace

      I could definitely see that. I think it’s interesting that his dumb luck is so close a match to her closely laid plans. They have two completely different styles of problem solving. She probably rubbed off on him and turned him into the mastermind that he is today.

  4. lynnsbooks

    Now I’m picturing Chains as a strange combination of Yoda and Tony from the Sopranos – this is a very odd mix indeed. I must admit I was sort of picturing Friar Tuck out of Robin Hood!!!
    I was thinking about what drove Sabetha and Locke apart and I’m not sure that even now I really know! (and I’ve read this all through and rereading it) Doh!
    I like the comparison with the Bondsmagi and fae – both very tricksy.
    Lynn :D

    • Grace

      Someone needs to draw a picture of Chains based on all of our mental images. It would be hilarious.

  5. TBM

    I’m bummed that I couldn’t join this one. Looks and sounds good and I love the cover. Enjoy!

  6. nrlymrtl

    Yeah for Chains. The flashbacks of him in this section really show his nurturing side. I too loved how he apologized to Locke, explained some things, and also listened to Locke all in one conversation.

    Oh yes! I am big time curious to see how the Bondsmage removes or neutralizes the poison in Locke. Knowing Lynch, he will make it real. There will be a definite cost to Locke, and not just what he negotiated with Patience, to being healed from the poison. I expect the process will be messy and even after the poison is seen to, Locke will have to recover his strength.

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