I would not change anything about the writing. I would change the narrator. I made it to chapter 7 and just couldn't take the narrator anymore. <..Show More »br/>My irritation went beyond my limits of endurance for several reasons: 1) narrator used the same voice for the main character and the non-character narration; 2) he also had a habit of reading some statements as if they were questions (he did this most often with the female voices); 3) and most irritating of all he gave one of the elder female characters a sing-song lilting voice that after a while became very distracting as the way her words were read did not match how I think the author intended her to be saying them. It was evident from the writing that she is a wise character yet the voice given by the narrator made her sound flighty.
One of the best things about Joe's books before this one is the reading done by Steven Pacey. He's one of the reasons I found this series to begin wit..Show More »h. I don't know the politics of changing from him but please bring him back.
This voice actor chose to give the main character, a female, a sort of poor Liverpool accent. EVERY OTHER CHARACTER had a more normal accent, except for a couple with an excessive Scottish accent. She is supposed to be educated but sounds like an idiot. I don't get this decision at all. It was very annoying to listen to. The other main character? Well, he grew up poor and uneducated, he gets a normal English accent. Ugh.
He also spoke in a sort of high-low sing song way that was very distracting. Thankfully he lessened it after a few hours. I don't know what the deal was but I almost returned this book because of the reader. I kept it because I do love Abercrombie books and want to support the author.
So, the story is pretty good, it's different than his previous stuff but interesting. I would recommend giving it a listen first to see if you can handle the voice actor.
And John Keating, maybe this was just a bad outing for you, maybe not. I don't want to judge on one book but please, think through your characters and don't try to put so much bloody play into the words that aren't dialogue.