Bitter and merciless war is coming to the frozen north. It's bloody and dangerous, and the Union army, split by politics and hamstrung by incompetence, is unprepared for the slaughter that's coming. Lacking experience, training, and in some cases even weapons, the army is scarcely equipped to repel Bethod's scouts, let alone his elite forces.
In the heat-ravaged south, the Gurkish are massing to assault the city of Dagoska, defended by Inquisitor Glokta. The city is braced for the inevitable defeat and massacre to come... but a plot is festering to hand the city to its besiegers without a fight, and the previous Inquisitor of Dagoska vanished without trace. Threatened from within and without the city, Glokta needs answers, and he needs them soon.
And to the east, a small band of malefactors travel to the edge of the world to reclaim a device from history - a Seed, hidden for generations - with tremendous destructive potential. A device which could put a end to war, to the army of Eaters in the South, to the invasion of Shanka from the North - but only if it can be found, and only if its power can be controlled.
©2007 Joe Abercrombie (P)2010 Orion Publishing Group Limited
The second istallment of "The First Law" series is more action packed than that first, most of the characters were introduced in the first book so little time is needed to describe charactors.
Before They Are Hanged is a great continuation of the series. But it is obvious that the author never intended the books to be read seperately. The second book ends much like the first book by just stopping. No resolution of the story threads just stops.
I did notice in this book tha the author is very tallented as is the narrator in bringing the story to life. In one scene Logan is fishing in the back ground and the author has him interject from out of the scene several times. It make it seem more like real life.
I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys good fantasy. The narrator does a great job and the story is quite simple but very well laid out.
Say something about yourself!
Say one thing for Joe Abercrombie, say he writes a damn fine fantasy series.
This review is more for the series as a whole but if you need something specific to Before They Are Hanged, then it is better than book 1. All the things that you liked in book 1 are better in book 2. If you liked but not loved book 1, keep going.
Admittedly, it took me a while to get my footing in the first book. I think this is more due to me having this attention span of a flea then any fault of the book. Once I got going I did not stop. The First Law Trilogy is a gritty, violent world that is utterly enjoyable. It's as violent as anything I've read yet is does not carry the weight of George R.R. Martin or Steven Erikson. It felt much lighter than that. I think this is in part due to the likable characters that Abercrombie so expertly creates. This could actually be taken as a good and bad thing. I mean, I actually liked all of the characters. Even the bad guys have redeeming qualities that makes you root for them. While rooting for characters is great, I did kind of miss feeling the satisfaction of watching a reviled character get his just due.
One of the greatest things this series has going for it is the narrator, Steven Pacey. I am fairly new to audiobooks. I've only been listening for a couple of years but I can say without hesitation that I have not heard better narration than Pacey's. The subtle differences in characters voices never feels fake or forced. I could always tell who was talking by the sound of his voice. The voices always added to the writing, never took away from. I am extremely critical of narrators but could find little fault with Steven Pacey.
Fifty something, small business owner, married, no children. Love travel, beaches, tropical isles, classic cars and listening!
Great narration, decent flow and great plot line. Takes over right from where book 1 left off, enjoyable listen, well worth the credit.
Joe Abercrombie has become tied with Patrick Rothfuss for my favorite living author. I love this series--blood, grit and swearing notwithstanding but essential--it is a story so well written and so well portrayed by the narrator that I know I will loathe its ending when I complete the last entry of the trilogy. Luckily for me, Joe has kept on writing and there are more books waiting for me.
Joe Abercrombie does a fantastic job of refreshing the fantasy genre with his gritty not everything is sunshine and rainbows style of writing. Don't get me wrong there are still good guys and bad guys but most of the time there is an extremely thin line between the two, I found myself thinking all the time "that guy is terrible...but a good man", you wanted to hate some characters but you just couldn't. It's hard to explain, suffice it to say its an awesome story, a great narrator, and you'll want to keep going.
I have a 40 minute commute each way and with out Audible, I'd go crazy! My fav genre is fantasy and I love a great series!
Lots of blood and fighting and details... excellent book and narration! If you liked the series, you wont be dissapoited with this one! Get it and be glad!
Yes, I would. I like this series. It is filled with intrigue. Though a little violent at times and not as sophisticated of a series as A Song of Ice and Fire, it is still decently written. Really one of the better books in the adventure fantasy genre. For people who like GRRM and ASOIAF.
The characters are not one dimensional and there is complexity to their relationships.
I like the Named Men who are the old companions of The Bloody Nine: The Dogman, Three Trees, Black Dow...
No extreme reactions, just pleasantly enjoyable. A guilty pleasure, really.
Ken Magerman Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Historical Fiction fan. Teacher, rockstar, medival gourmet, dungeon master, expert on secret Targaryens.
I would. This was a book i had previously read but bought for my brother for Christmas. I got the audio books so that i could refresh myself with the series and discuss. Mr. Pacey's reading is nothing short of exceptional. Several well done voices with excellent emotion and inflection. His Glotka in particular really brings the character to life. Overall the series is a really interesting take on the traditional fantasy in the vein of George RR Martin. This second book focuses on Glotka's quest for truth against forein forces, a heroic journey, a military campaign against barbaric forces, and political intrigue in the capital of the Union. Lots of action and mysteries revealed all with Ambercrombie's trademark wit and visceral telling of grey stories and human characters. Highly recommended for any fans of the genre. Also recommended for fans of war and intrigue. Like Martin, this is fantasy for people who don't read fantasy.
Glotka surrounded on all sides by enemies within and without searching for answers.
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