I just got done reading Douglas Hulick's debut novel Among Thieves. I hadn't heard much about it before I picked it up in Waterstone's - I'd seen it mentioned on Pat's Fantasy Hotlist but it hadn't really appealed to me so I passed. For one reason or another, though, I picked it up while browsing the other day and before I knew it I'd read the first two chapters. I figured I'd best buy it and give it a whirl.
I won't give much away, because it's a very twisty you-won't-see-this-coming sort of story, but I will say this; it's good. There's a lot going on in here, and a lot of worldbuilding that needs to be done - especially as this isn't the standard almost-Europe fantasy that is so prevalent. With that being the case the book occasionally suffers from info-dumps where one character tells another something that they should already know, but it's not so often that it's distracting and by the time you get into the second half of the book that's mostly done with.
The pace rips along from the word go - I genuinely couldn't put it down in places, which isn't something I've been able to say for a fantasy debut in a long time. I could have done with it being slower, simply because I'd like to spend more time in this world, but I get the impression that Hulick has plenty more tales to tell here.
To me, this felt like the successor to Scott Lynch's Gentlemen Bastard sequence - and for me it filled the void that is the massively long wait for The Republic Of Thieves. If you've read The Lies Of Locke Lamora and enjoyed it, I'd highly recommend Among Thieves.