This was mentioned in one of the book threads, but I think it’s so good it deserves to be noticed.
The First Law series by Joe Abercrombie. Book 1 is The Blade Itself, Book 2 is Before They Are Hanged, and Book 3 The Last Argument of Kings is due next March.
I’m halfway through book 2 and am loving the books. It has terrific, lean prose, great battle scenes, sympathetic and interesting characters, useful women that aren’t just there to reflect men back at twice their natural size, and, best of all, it’s funny.
I’m enjoying this series even more than Locke Lamora. I recommend it highly.
Wow, on Amazon the editorial review is super harsh (and these are chosen by the book publisher to go on Amazon’s site):
British newcomer Abercrombie fills his muddled sword-and-sorcery series opener with black humor and reluctant heroes. Logen Ninefingers, a barbarian on the run from an ex-employer who’s now king of the North, finds his loyalties complicated when he switches sides and becomes a valuable source of intel to the beleaguered Union. Glokta, a torture victim turned torturer, gets roped into securing the Union’s position against both the invading Northmen and the incompetent Union king and council, and ruthlessly wields his skills in attempts to weed out traitors. Foppish Jezal, a preternaturally excellent swordsman, manages to win the contest to become the Union champion, thanks to a little help from Bayaz, a mage with his own agenda. The workmanlike plot, marred by repetitive writing and an excess of torture and pain, is given over to introducing the mostly unlikable characters, only to send them off on separate paths in preparation for the next volume’s adventures.
That said, can you calibrate your recommendation a bit? I’m not much of a fantasy reader, but when I do read it I like Steven Brust a lot, and also liked the first two Black Company books, and I’m a big Zelazny fan.
Don’t be an arse, drama queen. All that was posted was the way the end of the book made someone feel. You can throw a dart out the window and hit someone who didn’t feel the end of this series was depressing.
You could learn as much as you learned from that post just by reading some jacket copy.
Can we change Goodkind in this thread to something else so his name does not soil this thread?
I love this series. The 3rd one coming out in the US took me by surprise or I would be on my way to finishing. I need to catch up with what I have and then I will dive in with both feet. Great series so far, AFAIAC
I had a Qt3 moment with the third book last night. I literally couldn’t put it down.
WILL RUIN THE ENDING OF THE SERIES FOR YOU
YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED
Logen really gets put in another light once his past catches up to him. It’s tough to reconcile his dead-eyed threats with the Logen who led the band in book 1 though, and who reaches out to Jezal with small gestures and time. I mean, I can see him having to put it on for the benefit of his new allies who would like nothing better than stab him in the back if he showed weakness but since Dogman’s acting like this is new how on earth did he keep Black Dow in check back when it was just the six of them?
I had figured out the broad strokes of the ending by book 2, but I had not accounted for Bayaz being a complete and total bastard. Damn. No punches pulled there.