Inquisitor Glokta, a crippled and bitter relic of the last war, former fencing champion turned torturer, is trapped in a twisted and broken body - not that he allows it to distract him from his daily routine of torturing smugglers.
Nobleman, dashing officer and would-be fencing champion Captain Jezal dan Luthar is living a life of ease by cheating his friends at cards. Vain and shallow, the biggest blot on his horizon is having to get out of bed in the morning to train with obsessive and boring old men. And Logen Ninefingers, an infamous warrior with a bloody past, is about to wake up with plans to settle a blood feud with Bethod, the new King of the Northmen, once and for all - ideally by running away from it.
But as he's discovering, old habits die hard....especially when Bayaz gets involved. An old man with a terrible temper and a pathetic assistant, he could be the First of the Magi, he could be a spectacular fraud, but whatever he is, he's about to make the lives of Glokta, Jezal, and Logen a whole lot more difficult....
©2010 Joe Abercrombie (P)2010 Orion Publishing Group
A remarkably solid and gripping story, with just enough light and fantasy. if you have ever played a d&d campaign made up of disparate characters and steeped intrigue and adventure, this book will make you feel right at home.
The characters are colorful, diverse and consistent, and though some are not especially likeable, they never cease to entertain.
The story itself feels a lot like what might happen if other high fantasy series (read: Wheel of Time) were a little more grounded and believable, though there are enough glimpses of magic and adventure to keep it from being a dipressing experience (read: ASOI&F).
All in all, it was a gripping novel, difficult to put down, and exceptionally well performed, with great moments of world building in between.
If not for a somewhat unsatisfying ending, which does little to tie up all the loose ends and is plainly just a launching point for the next book, this would be a 5 star experience. As it stands, its compelling narative and cast, combined with Pacey's versatile voice, have made sure I will be going into the next book of the series, optimistic about the prospect.
It's inability to stand on its own aside, The Blade Itself is a fantastic book and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking to dig into a new fantasy series.
I own all of Abercrombie's books in print and then I discovered the amazing narration of Mr Pacey and bought all the Audible versions of The First Law.
If you like the series you need to hear it read aloud to you.
Hard to earn my 5 star & it is well deserved! Stephen Pacy is an amazing reader with the grittiest tale. I only want to know more about This place. GOOD NEWS. Joe Abercrombie has written over a dozen books now. READ THEM ALL!!!! Seriously, Mr. Abercrombie didn't pay me for this review. I just like this book that much!!!!!!!!!!
I like how these characters are written. they all have a past and are flawed and somehow i end up loving them for their own different reasons. great book
I never leave reviews but I am for this book, I am huge werewolf story and movie buff and these 3 books are the best werewolf story I've heard so far.. werewolf horror at its best :)
I love this series. I've read it and listened to numerous times. The voice artist does an A++ job. If you like darker stories where the endings aren't all unicorns and rainbows then this trilogy will become one of your favourites. Bloodier than Game of Thrones and characters that you will love and others you will hate because you love them. Nothing is at it seems.
"Great narration for a great book"
I've read the book a while ago and fancied tried the audio book and it's another experience all together. Steven Pacey does an excellent job, giving a chilling rendition.
"Characters to care about"
A well told strong leaving you wanting more. People who you shouldn't like but do. Best fantasy book in a long time.
"The Blade Itself"
Narrative: excellent Storyline: very good; very engaging
Hope the remaining 2 books live up to the quality of the 1st one.
"Fantastically read! Choice work on a very good bk."
Loved it and can't wait to hear book two. Worth every penny. x y z
"slow burner too fast runner"
soon as this story hits it's stride around midway it takes you along for the ride refusing to let you go
A great story brilliantly read by Stephen Pacey. Loved every moment of it. highly recommend!
"The underbelly of fantasy. Ripped open with a blunt knife."
If you like your fantasy novels dark and unforgiving you will love the characters and story here. If your expecting elves, look elsewhere.
"like an adult discworld!"
have never heard of this author's work before but must say will definitely be following it with the other books in this series an enjoyable adventure with twists and Turns you just don't see coming
"Well read, great story"
The story is an epic tale of impending war. It has some great chracters, all anti-heroes, who eventually all end up in the same place. It was perfectly read. My only grumbles are that some characters take longer to buy into than others and the word 'grimaced' (which is used a lot!) is pronounced "grim maced" which frustrated me every time, at least 3 times a chapter.
"Amazing , witty , Gritty and addictive"
I have listened to this trilogy 3 times now and I can say without a doubt that it's is by far some of the best fantasy literature out there . It's can be very dark at times and offers a very diverse insight into human nature with its vast array of unique characters , it can at times be very funny however not in a way that may seem forced or unnatural. It does have some magical elements to the story but not in a way that makes it seem childish or silly . Overall this is a fantastic trilogy written by a fantastic author and read by a fantastic voice actor . 100% recommend
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