Arsene Lupin, Gentleman-Thief Paperback
Leblanc's creation, gentleman thief Arsene Lupin, is everything you would expect from a French aristocrat - witty, charming, brilliant, sly ... and possibly the greatest thief in the world.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 304 pages
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Publication Date: 01/04/2007
- Category: Thriller / suspense
- ISBN: 9780143104865
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Review by Literate.Ninja
I am a great fan of the Lupin III series by Monkey Punch, wherein the titular character claims to be the grandson of the famous French thief, so I'm really not sure why it took me so long to read the original work. And I must say, I was not disappointed with it. Arsene Lupin, as the title suggests, is a gentleman-thief. Which is to say, a thief, yes, but always a gentleman first. He is unfailingly polite, sophisticated, and worldly. His intellect is often placed on a level with Sherlock Holmes, which seems a fair comparison (they also share the traits of being fictional characters published in popular serials around the same time period, so I guess that dapper intellectuals were something of a craze at the time). However, where Holmes' defining trait is his cold, analytical personality, Lupin has a decidedly more emotional bent. In the very first chapter he falls in love with a young woman on a transatlantic cruise, and when he meets her again several chapters later during a robbery, he is so upset by her seeing him in the role of a thief that he promises to return everything he has taken from the house. Overall, I found these stories very enjoyable, and would recommend this collection to anyone who enjoys turn-of-the-century literature or the Sherlock Holmes series.