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The Heroes | [Joe Abercrombie]

The Heroes

They say Black Dow has killed more men than winter and clawed his way to the throne of the North up a hill of skulls. The King of the Union, ever a jealous neighbor, is not about to stand by smiling while Black Dow claws his way any higher. The orders have been given, and the armies are toiling through the northern mud. Thousands of men are converging on a forgotten ring of stones, on a worthless hill, in an unimportant valley, and they've brought a lot of sharpened metal with them.
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Publisher's Summary

They say Black Dow has killed more men than winter and clawed his way to the throne of the North up a hill of skulls. The King of the Union, ever a jealous neighbor, is not about to stand by smiling while Black Dow claws his way any higher. The orders have been given, and the armies are toiling through the northern mud. Thousands of men are converging on a forgotten ring of stones, on a worthless hill, in an unimportant valley, and they've brought a lot of sharpened metal with them. Bremer dan Gorst, disgraced master swordsman, has sworn to reclaim his stolen honor on the battlefield. Obsessed with redemption and addicted to violence, he's far past caring how much blood gets spilled in the attempt. Even if it's his own.

Prince Calder isn't interested in honor, and still less in getting himself killed. All he wants is power, and he'll tell any lie, use any trick, and betray any friend to get it. Just as long as he doesn't have to fight for it himself. Curnden Craw, the last honest man in the North, has gained nothing from a life of warfare but swollen knees and frayed nerves. He hardly even cares who wins anymore; he just wants to do the right thing. But can he even tell what that is with the world burning down around him? Over three bloody days of battle, the fate of the North will be decided. But with both sides riddled by intrigues, follies, feuds, and petty jealousies, it is unlikely to be the noblest hearts or even the strongest arms that prevail. Three men. One battle. No Heroes. This audiobook is introduced and closed out by author Joe Abercrombie, who also reads the acknowledgements.

©2011 Joe Abercrombie Limited (P)2011 Tantor

What the Critics Say

"The Heroes is Joe Abercrombie doing what he does best but better than ever before: gritty, violent, morally ambiguous and darkly funny fantasy with a streak of intelligent cynicism." (The Wertzone)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (1263 )
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4.2 (1019 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Nils heber, UT, United States 10-28-12
    Nils heber, UT, United States 10-28-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great narration, SLOW story line"

    This book is supposed to take place about 8-10 years after the end of The First Law series. I liked that series a lot, and was hoping for more of the same.

    This story dragged on and on. It had the makings of a good story, but it never got off the ground. I gave up after about 6 hours. Couldn't finish it.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Keith Arlington, TN, United States 10-08-12
    Keith Arlington, TN, United States 10-08-12 Member Since 2009
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    "Expectations Dashed"

    First off Joe Abercrombie is one of my favorite authors, but I think he abandoned the personality he gave to Black Dowe. The book takes place after the death of the Bloody Nine, and starts with Black Dowe as king of the north. I had thought that Abercrombie had taken some time to introduce the Black Dowe character, while he traveled with the Bloody Nine. Black Dowe was in my mind was a soldier first because he loved to kill. He went from battle to battle with very little thought into the effort. He was not above starting fights with his traveling companions if he went to long between battles. He was the kind of man who encountered men that just wanted to fight with or against him. Black Dowe was a named man that earned his name. He was the man that struck fear into other men almost as much fear as the Bloody Nine himself. He often abandoned planned raids and just barreled in. The thought that he would build alliances, or follow battle plans seemed foreign to his personality. On top of all that he is now king and not killing very much. Black Dowe showed his bad temper a lot but it did not turn violent till the end of the book. His own officers were scared of him but Black Dowe did nothing to show why that was. Black Dowe had some how found a witch that joined his side. She kept showing up and leaving you with an ominus feeling, like something important would happen around her. Nothing ever happened with her except she showed up every now and again. The story left me wanting and I think it is Joe's worst effort yet.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. L. Turner Provo, Utah, United States 08-27-12
    C. L. Turner Provo, Utah, United States 08-27-12 Member Since 2011

    Tutivillus

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    "Better than "Cold""

    The Heroes was almost up there with the First Law series...close. Had Steven Pacey been narrating, it may well have been right on pace. The writing is bit better than "Best Served Cold" although there is some repetition to it (J.A. reuses quite a few phrases and descriptions...almost formulaic in places). I did enjoy the change of pace and the implied movement of the overall story arc. You know there are twisted things coming...and it will be fun.

    Can't wait until "Red" makes it to audio.

    Please have Steven Pacey do it!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    William 01-25-12
    William 01-25-12 Member Since 2014
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    "Keep it coming Abercrombie"

    Great transition from the earlier books that took place over long periods to about a week in this one. I wish they had stuck with Pacey narrating but Page does alright. If you liked all of the other books you'll enjoy this one too.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    B. 10-18-11
    B. 10-18-11 Member Since 2008
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    "I concur with the others.....Bad narration."

    Great book. Bad on my ears. Love the series. Ill listen to all of them again. Buuuuuut I will read this one next time.

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Dominion, Nova Scotia, Canada 04-06-11
    Kevin Dominion, Nova Scotia, Canada 04-06-11 Member Since 2010
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    "A good Abercrombie read"

    I enjoyed it. While i agree that Mr. Pacey is an astonishingly good narrator, I cannot fault Michael Page. Yes, the transition from Pacey to Page was a bit jarring, but i think the negative reviews based on that are unfair. The novel is a good read. Its a bit more superficial then the trilogy, but thats ok.

    However, i would like to see Joe Abercrombie try his hand at a new project. I am satisfied with having the Heroes as the conclusion to this set of books, and think i might hesitate to buy another novel set in this particular world.

    2 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    GLENNO 11-30-12
    GLENNO 11-30-12 Member Since 2013

    Game Developer

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    "Wasn't expecting the F word every third sentence"

    It was actually very hard to listen to. I have listened to a lot of books but I was lost. And I definitely don't get the STUPID humor in it. I couldn't finish it.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Altamonte Springs, FL, United States 12-22-11
    Jeff Altamonte Springs, FL, United States 12-22-11 Member Since 2014
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    "Guess Joe needed the money"
    Any additional comments?

    Unlike many of the people who have reviewed this, I really didn't have a problem with the narrator. It was the story itself, I found lacking. Loved the First Law series but this just doesn't live up to the storyline or character developement of the prior books. I didn't heed the warnings of other reviewers. Hope I can save someone out there a little time and cash.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ROBERT READING, MA, United States 08-14-11
    ROBERT READING, MA, United States 08-14-11 Member Since 2013
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    "Wake me up"

    What a yawner........story about a battle...big deal.
    NO STORY!!!!! This author should be embarrassed
    to have his name on this crap.

    0 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gabriel Indianapolis, IN, United States 05-14-12
    gabriel Indianapolis, IN, United States 05-14-12 Member Since 2013
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    "So bad, don't bother with this book."
    Would you try another book from Joe Abercrombie and/or Michael Page?

    After this steeming pile?...... im not sure.


    What was most disappointing about Joe Abercrombie’s story?

    This Book was full of side characters from the "First Law" books that no one cared about or even liked and had no need to be made in to main ones...but yet they were. The storie jumps around back and forth to all these lame people trying to take a dam hill and hold it.
    Worst of all NO Logan Nine Fingers ...oh sure they throw the name around to get you to keep enduring the bad storie but nope . I hate this book.


    What didn’t you like about Michael Page’s performance?

    Micheal didnt even try and keeps the voices anywhere near the ones in the "First Law" books ..its like he didnt research the last books and went his own way...
    Other then that he was ...ok.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    This book pissed me off so bad , I want to beat Joe Abercrombie bloody with a hardbound copy of it.


    Any additional comments?

    Its like Joe gave up and spewed this crap out just to make a buck...

    0 of 5 people found this review helpful
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