The end is coming.
Logen Ninefingers might only have one more fight in him, but it’s going to be a big one. Battle rages across the North, the King of the Northmen still stands firm and there’s only one man who can top him. His oldest friend and his oldest enemy. It’s time for the Bloody-Nine to come home.
With too many masters and too little time, Superior Glokta is fighting a different kind of war - a secret struggle in which no-one is safe and no-one can be trusted. His days with a sword are far behind him. It’s a good thing blackmail, threats, and torture still work well enough.
Jezal dan Luthar has decided that winning glory is too painful, and turned his back on soldiering for a life with the woman he loves. But love can be painful too, and glory has a nasty habit of creeping up on someone.
While the King of the Union lies on his death bed, the peasants revolt and the nobles scramble to steal his crown. No-one believes that the shadow of war is falling across the very heart of the Union. The First of the Magi has a plan to save the world. But there are risks. There is no risk more terrible, after all, than to break the First Law.
©2008 Joe Abercrombie (P)2010 Orion Publishing Group Limited
First, let me say I'm an avid reader of negative reviews. I want to find out what people don't like about a book when I bother to find out anything at all beforehand. That having been said, most of the bad reviews of this brilliantly written and performed series are aimed directly at the ending Mr. Abercrombie gave us. And I must point out to anyone who might read my glowing review that we are warned a couple of times in this book that it's not going to be pretty. But that's the point of the whole thing, at least to my mind. Ardee says "No one gets what they deserve," or something close thereto, and that sums up the whole thing.
I guess my point is that anybody that's looking for a fairy-tale ending should probably read a fairy-tale and leave off the grown-up fantasy. They'll just be disappointed.
I also particularly enjoyed the very end. (BEGIN SPOILERS) I think dropping the Bloody Nine off a cliff into a river and leaving it there is an awesome way to come full circle and let the reader's mind fill in what happens next. I can just see him washing up somewhere--"Still alive..."--and charging into another several months of butchery to pay back Black Dow. Or maybe he'll head south and find Ferro. It's up to me and which aspect of Logen I want to root for how it all turns out. I'm thankful for that.
In all, a superb work of fantasy by one of my new favorite authors. Thanks Joe.
This third installment of The First Law trilogy is great. Loved it until the end. At that point, I was checking my iPhone to see if it somehow stopped playing before the end of the file. There was no ending... or, if that was the intended ending, it didn't do anything for me. I was literally thinking that I may have gotten a faulty download because it just seems to stop in mid-narration without ever gaining closure on the active storylines.
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
I'll start by saying you shouldn't read this book unless you've read the first two in the series or you'll probably find the characters confusing... and if you found either of those first two to be gory, mature, or violent, this one is as bad, perhaps worse.
I really shouldn't like Glokta as much as I do. Really. And, I have to admit that from the very start of this book, I wanted his life to work out for him... even while knowing it would be completely inappropriate if it did, but still...
This is a nasty little book... nasty nasty... and a fantastic wrap up of the trilogy. Everyone is neatly squared away at the end (yeah, okay, not so neatly in some cases, but anyway.) Some horrible twists, some intriguing plot turns...
Lots of blood and death and gore and a lot of time spent inside Glokta's head (which I quite liked)... and most of the characters did not come away with a "happy ending" even if the over-arching story did... sorta...
I thoroughly enjoyed this series (even with its length) and particularly liked how "right" and "wrong" were sort of up in the air a lot of the time... the author didn't try to tell us what the moral should be, or if there are even supposed to be any morals. And if you don't like that, you can suck on your sour toothless gums.
The narration is excellent. Each character is distinctly voiced.
Joe loves to stick it to his characters. Series leaves you with "Well..there must be another coming...there just has to be." But there is not. One of the other books mentions some of the characters and his latest book apparently mentions Black Dow, but in general you come out of this series feeling like you've been punched in the stomach. While I loved the books I don't think I'll be reading anything else of his.
Love speculative fiction so I am always watching for great sci-fi or fantasy. But since I'm a book addict, any good writing works for me - mystery, historical fiction, classics, even great kids' books. Tend to steer clear of YA and romance, but sample some here and there since you never know where great stories or authors may be hiding :)
A bit unsatisfying
If would probably recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the fantasy genre. It is well-written - great characters, good foreshadowing, excellent plot twists - but I would be more likely to recommend it as an audiobook than as a novel to read. The battles in the book would have gotten quite tedious for me if I were reading, but I think I could enjoy Pacey reading the phone book to me. He is amazing.
I've only heard Steven Pacey on the 3 First Law novels, but he's got to be one of the best and I will look for other books he narrates.
Pacey is perfection and the novel is well-written. However, I found the ending disappointing. Abercrombie wrote the First Law series as 3 books although none stands alone. And, then this last one leaves you hanging. That seems a bit unfair and sort of manipulative on the author's part. If I have spent the time and money to go through three entire books which constitute the whole series and some of the central characters are left hanging still...not quite right if you ask me.
I was very pleased and enthralled with the majority of this series of books, but the ending was very anticlimactic and left a lot to be desired. The authored created an interesting world and intriguing characters and I have seen some crossover of these characters and this world in his other works, but the end of this particular series just left me disappointed and wanting something a little better. It almost seemed like after creating such a vivid story, he could not figure out a good way to end the series. Overall I recommend the series as a good read (or listen as the case may be) for those who like fantasy with a dark edge.
This book is the last of the trilogy, I think. What applies to this book, applies to the other two.
This guy can write fantasy! Great characterization. No strength without frailty, no goodness
without evil. Even when they do the unexpected, it makes human sense. And they do quite
a bit of that.
Yes, there are
demons and magic here, but they are only the condiments. They add spice but don't overpower
the main course. The plot lines are twisty and complex but the author does a great job in
providing enough direction so the reader never gets confused or lost.
There is enough wit and humor to keep things moving with a zippy pace. And, again, the
laughs come at the most unexpected times. Abercrombie writes with clarity and a marvelous
sense of pace. The ending to this book, which seems to end the trilogy, is not "and they
lived happily, ever after." It is as imaginative and thought provoking as the end of
a Ray Bradbury short story. This is what I always look for but almost never find...a great
And, Steven Pacey's narration is first rate and makes all three come alive.
Steven Pacey is amazing! In fact, I plan to look up other books he has narrated because I loved listening to him bring this story alive!
Still Glokta, Logan, and West. Don't want to give any spoilers so I won't tell you what happens to them, but their journeys are so riveting, I was almost cranky when Abercrombie would turn to his other characters.
I look forward to listening to his other books to compare!
I was captivated by this series. I cared about some characters, I grew to loathe others. But the point is, I was never indifferent. I wanted to know what was happening to them, and would be frustrated when they were frustrated, sad, when they were sad...
It is a little gruesome at times, but it is part of the hard, fearsome world Abercrombie has created, so even though I cringed through those parts, I couldn't put it down!
Abercrombie does not write fairy tales. This isn't a book about happy endings and everyone getting what they deserve (or maybe they do, I suppose). Abercrombie does not resolve the whole story, just this particular phase in the lives of the characters. I am dying to know what happens next- where do they go, what happens on their journeys, tell us more !!!! There is a lot of room for Abercrombie to tell us more about these characters- their histories, their future adventures... I am anxious to know more!
Joe has written one of the darkest fantasy stories I've read to date... the world is gritty and dark... its characters are gritty and dark... and the story is more of the same. It was fairly typical of modern storytelling (which cost him a star) but the characters were brilliant (which will likely have me listening again).
GREAT characters, deep (though not particularly subtle) and photo-realistically communicated. Joe took the typical fantasy archetypes and added another dimension to each of them... asking the question 'what would a REAL barbarian hero, or noble brat, or centuries old conjurer act (and THINK) like?'
Great character separation, delivered solid performances on some challenging 'damaged' characters. A great voice performance doesn't draw attention to itself... and this was a great performance.
'Say one thing about Joe Abercrombie, say he's got a few things he could teach George RR Martin about dark fantasy'
Don't listen to the 'ending critics'. The book ended perfectly fine. After reading the reviews I was expecting some horrible open ending (like HBO ends every series they've ever made)... and Joe ties this up as neatly and cleanly as this story demands (nearly as good as it could be). Of course this story demands a messy ending, so don't blame Joe for delivering... but all the primary plotlines are properly concluded, so have no fear and buy the series.
This book or should I say series of books, are some of the best I have read. I found all three to be truly entertaining, well written by Abercrombie and expertly performed by Pacey. I was hesitant going in with each book being well over 20 hours, but ended up sad that it had to come to an end. There were stories within the stories and the author did an excellent job tying them all into the main plot. There were many parallels to real life woven into the story which I found very interesting as well. I???ve said it in my other two reviews, but think it???s worth mentioning again. Steven Pacey???s performance is outstanding and Abercrombie's writing is masterful. I highly recommend all three of these books, which should be read in order.
Report Inappropriate Content