Regular price: $19.64

Free with 30-day trial
Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

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

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    4,327
  • 4 Stars
    1,855
  • 3 Stars
    555
  • 2 Stars
    136
  • 1 Stars
    108

Performance

  • 4.7 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    4,397
  • 4 Stars
    974
  • 3 Stars
    237
  • 2 Stars
    37
  • 1 Stars
    45

Story

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    3,471
  • 4 Stars
    1,549
  • 3 Stars
    490
  • 2 Stars
    111
  • 1 Stars
    83
Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Paceyius Excellus

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

It's fifty percent delivered, an' I believe the Bloody Nine would agree!

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Blade Itself?

It was like looking into a mirror.

Which scene was your favorite?

The one with blood.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yah, if my ass was three days long.

Any additional comments?

Bloody Hell

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • david
  • Helotes, TX, United States
  • 12-22-13

If you love GRRM...

What did you like best about this story?

I was looking for a new series to read and stumbled on to this one. Wow! As a GRRM, Robert Jordan and Steven Erikson fan, I have high expectations and Joe Abercrombie earned a place on my favs list. My only complaint is that that are only 6 books to enjoy…I hope there are more coming. The writing is gritty, realistic, and witty…what more can you ask for? Additionally, the narrator is incredible. Yes, they were forced to use a different one in 2 of the last 3 books, but give him a chance…he is almost as good once you get over the initial disappointment of a new narrator. I highly recommend these books!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Dominc
  • Mississauga, ON, Canada
  • 12-17-13

Fantastic Series

What made the experience of listening to The Blade Itself the most enjoyable?

The narrator is fantastic and I listen to a lot of audio books and his range of voices is truly amazing

Who was your favorite character and why?

Logan 9 fingers. Just a very interesting character and very likeable.

Which scene was your favorite?

Hard to say.

Any additional comments?

THe book started out a bit disturbing but it then became extremely interesting. Keep through it and you will find that you are excited to go on to the next book in the series.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Brilliant

I can't think of a better way to enjoy this dark fantasy novel. Joe Abercrombie is amazing and Steven Pacey is the perfect voice for this fantastic tale. Just pure genius!

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Not so much

After reading so many reviews about how great this series is I thought I would give it a chance. I really wanted to like it. However, it just seemed like a never ending story going really nowhere. I will not continue with the series.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Unique story staring deep characters with history

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

I would certainly recommend this story as a story of flawed anti-heros. Something we could all relate to (the flawed part more than the hero).

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Brent
  • Melbourne, Australia
  • 11-14-13

Brilliant dark fantasy

Joe Abercrombie's dark fantasy world is compelling. The characters are excellent where none of them are your typical heroes, yet despite any evil they do you still want them to come out on top. The style of writing from different viewpoints gives a great insight into the story and the characters mind and development.

Steven Pacey's performance is excellent, his voices are brilliant and the pace and style of his reading is impeccable, one of the best narrators I have come across.

I would recommend this story and audiobook to all fantasy fans.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Gritty often humorous Anti Hero

Would you listen to The Blade Itself again? Why?

I have listen to the whole series twice through.

What did you like best about this story?

There is so much to like here it is hard to pick one. Every character excellent. Rich dark characters all with various faults. I also love how Abercrombie injects humor into the most tense situations. This is dark fantasy, the world Abercrombie creates is very violent.

What about Steven Pacey’s performance did you like?

Steven Pacey did a good job bringing the characters to life but a note to whoever produces these things. STOP putting in music and sounds effects. There isn't much of it in these book more just some mood music during the start of chapters but I think I speak for all when I say it unneeded and unwanted. Just let the guy tell the story. If you have the right guy and as I said Pacey is excellent, you don't need sound effects.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Absorbing story, complex characters, great reader

I was blown away by this series. Abercrombie has created these characters that I've had arguments with friends about: Is Glokta evil? What's the importance of Ardie West? How significant is speaking with spirits? I deeply cared what happened to all of these people, and I sped through all three books, amazed to see how things fell out. I guarantee you you won't expect the end of Book 3.

Steven Pacey's performance is the fourth wall of this magnificent edifice, though. I could tell you which character was speaking without any clues from the text, his feel for voice is so good. When I finished this series, I went looking for more Abercrombie books; I also went looking for more narration by Pacey. He's amazingly good.

There's nothing not to like here: it's a fantastic story, compellingly told and perfectly read.

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Henrik
  • Brooklyn, NY, United States
  • 09-29-13

Well writen book without a good plot

Is there anything you would change about this book?

The book is an introduction to the characters and settings for the first law series. The book is well written, the characters interesting but there are no "goal" in the plot. Alone, The blade itself, is therefore not the best read.

What did you like best about this story?

One of the characters. Inquisitor Glokte. And the dark humor.

What about Steven Pacey’s performance did you like?

Very good. Especially his voice of Logan and Glokte. Female voices not so good.

Did The Blade Itself inspire you to do anything?

Yes. I've brought the second book in the series.

Sort by:
  • Overall
  • Matt
  • 04-07-13

A fantastic reading of an ok (if grim) story

It’s a fairly grim story using similar multi character perspectives to cover lots of changes all over a fantasy world. The characters while interesting are not entirely likable and you don’t really rout for any one in particular. It’s well written and excellently presented (Ill be looking for more books read by Steven Pacey)



There is a good mix of action and intrigue but this should be seen very much as the opening scene setting for what will clearly become a bigger story.



I didn’t feel compelled to dive into book two but will pick it up at some point.

  • Overall
  • James R Hughes
  • 04-02-13

Quite superb

This is one of the the most enjoyable listens I've ever heard. After less than a minute I was totally invested in Inquisitor Glokta and was similarly quickly invested in the other major characters as well. The story moves smoothly and quickly, although perhaps it could be argued it lacks major complexity. The book is wonderfully narrated by Steven Pacey who manages to convey the dry wit and sarcasm that veins the novel most expertly - I was often chuckling out loud at some of the drier witticisms of Glokta. I recommend this most heartily.

  • Overall
  • John
  • 01-07-13

Great Part 1 to a trilogy expertly narrated

I have nearly 24 audio books under my belt and thought nothing would surpass Rob Inglis' version of Lord of The Rings until I listened to a sample of this book by Steven Pacey.



Wow, Steven really has put his all into character customisation excellently narrated with characters that seem to come alive. This combined with what is a clever character driven plot makes for one of my top listens so far on Audible. I'm nearly at the end of Part 1 and already have Part 2 and 3 waiting to be heard. I can't wait! I've noticed that Pacey has also done Joe's other works and will be downloading them as well as soon as I get the credits. Top story top narrator and a worthy listen.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • darren
  • 12-24-12

Outstanding!!!

With rich characters and an in depth story, this book is an instant classic. Joe Abercrombie manages to bring the real life kind of substance and flavour to his characters that is sadly lacking in a lot of other formulaic novels of this genre. There is no black or white, the main protagonists have both flaws and humour that make them jump from the page or speaker. You may find yourself looking for excuses to spend time alone just to listen some more.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • PatM
  • 12-23-12

Still Alive....

This is indeed a very well-crafted story with a fascinating cast of conflicted characters and at first not one of them very likeable: the barbarian with a very bloody past, Logen Nine Fingers aka The Bloody Nine, arrogant Bayaz, mythical first of the Magi, vain peacock Captain Jezel, and standing head and shoulders above the rest, my favorite fantasy character of all time, the deliciously cynical Inquisitor San dan Glokta, who views torturing almost as an artform. Essentially nothing much happens in this first installment of the trilogy, however that doesnt matter. We are taking our time, building up a vivid sense of setting and getting to know the characters in all their flawed states. This is a dark fantasy because it reflects the reality that life sucks and that even the nobelest of heroes is human and has serious flaws. There is not much hope of a good outcome, but we do get tiny glimmers of light, which keep us going. And Steven Pacey is just fanatastic narrating. Actually as another reviewer mentions, he does such a brilliant job bringing this novel to life, he really does deserve an oscar for it! My new Mantra "Still Alive..."

  • Overall
  • Osagie
  • 12-18-12

Great listen

The story is fantastic, the characters have great depth. The narration is top class, just one small issue with this is the pronunciation of 'grimace', this has left me cringing. Apart from this small issue, I would say this series is on a par with books like the black company.

  • Overall
  • Sarah
  • 05-15-12

Why Do I Do This???

Fantastic book, brilliant narration. The only downside - I HAVE GOT WAIT TWO WEEKS UNTIL MY NEXT CREDIT!!!

Can't wait for book two!!!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Alan
  • 05-10-12

Gruesome, gory, and just brilliant!!

Just finished listening to this and I enjoyed it very very much. Superbly narrated by the brilliant Stephen Pacey, this is adult fantasy at it's very best, full of well defined characters including evil baddies and flawed heroes and a story that you know will encompass all in the end. The great thing is, this is just the first book of the story, and I have just begun the second one!, It is so fantastic that I can continue with this incredibly engrossing story without having to miss a beat! Fantastic!!

  • Overall
  • Mordy
  • 11-25-11

Book is good but Narrator is excellent

I just wanted to back up the other reviews - this is a five star read, the narrator in particular is exceptional.

  • Overall
  • Grace
  • 06-05-11

Great story, superb narration

This is a great book, the start of a very enjoyable trilogy. Although the narrative elements don't always seem to tie in, that is because this is the set-up to an epic quest story. Although the themes and events are those often found insword and sorcery fantasy stories, the excellent pacing and believable characters make this an outstanding book.
What really lifts it up, though, is Steven Pacey's narration - he handles a huge cast with consummate skill, men and women both, giving them life and making them all easily recognizable. Excellent.