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  1. #1

    The First Law- worth the money?

    I'm trying to decide whether or not to go ahead and buy The First Law by Joe Abercrombie.I'm looking for a new fantasy series to start up while I wait for ADWD to come out.

    I would like to get some solid opinions on this series if possible. How does it compare to series such as ASoIaF and the Riftwar Saga? Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
    Better than both. Characters and plot are better than Riftwar, and the plot is more--what's the word?--concrete, I guess, than in ASOIAF. I also found the characters to generally be more likable than those in ASOIAF, but I never got into GRRM take it with a grain of salt. The Bloody Nine alone makes the trilogy worth reading. Bayaz is an interesting take on the wizard archetype.
    Last edited by Mock; January 14th, 2009 at 08:41 PM.

  3. #3
    Registered User ThornofCamorr's Avatar
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    Jan 2008
    Quote Originally Posted by Mage- View Post
    Better than both.

  4. #4
    I started The Blade Itself, and then put it on hiatus to read Sword of Shannara and now GRRM's Game Of Thrones. In retrospect, the first interruption seems like a bit of a dim idea, although I am very much enjoying Gurrm (who has, alas, been himself interrupted by Primo Levi at the behest of my university). Abercrombie is for people who like a bit of darkness, but want a part of that darkness to be in the form of humour. It is both a little lighter (in the sense of being less weighed down in its own epicness) than Gurrm and a little more anarchic and unstable. It kind of makes me think of Raymond Chandler in a way. Call it "anti-heroic fantasy".

    I know frig-all about the Riftwar Saga, although literally judging the book by its cover I wouldn't imagine it's quite the same type of thing...
    Last edited by tragic; January 14th, 2009 at 06:35 PM.

  5. #5
    Registered User Werthead's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Colchester, Essex, United Kingdom
    Better than Feist, not too far off from GRRM once the trilogy reaches its final volume. There's a similar bloody-mindedness in attitude and in some of the characters. If you are a fan of GRRM I say it's a no-brainer: get to The First Law ASAP!

  6. #6
    It's worth noting that received opinion (OK, wikipedia) generally sees JA following somewhat in GRRM's steps (particularly in the types of characters used), but he has a voice of his own.

  7. #7
    \m/ BEER \m/ Moderator Rob B's Avatar
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    May 2000
    Near Cows in the Garden State
    It is absolutely worth the money, one of the best trilogies on the shelves and one of the best completed series of the 21st Century. Check out his SFFWorld Page where a few official reviews are posted.

    Or, just search the forum since his work is discussed (with mostly positive words) quite often, here are all the threads tagged with abercrombie.

    Failing that, Joe will pop in and tell you should buy his books.

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by ThornofCamorr View Post
    Be quiet and go wash your precious GRRM's feet, foo.

    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention how jawdroppingly crazy the second half of the trilogy gets.

  9. #9
    Literary Assassin Singularity101's Avatar
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    Nov 2008
    Houston, TX
    I'm almost done with 'The Blade Itself'... and I must say it's quite an amazing read. Somewhat like GRRM, but on a smaller scale.. but he weaves the characters like a spider does a web. My personal favorite is Glotka and the Bloody Nine.

  10. #10
    Thanks for all the quick replies. I had heard some good things about the series before this, and now seeing the strong, positive remarks here I suppose I'll go ahead and get the books.

  11. #11
    Peckish hippokrene's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
    Between here and now
    I checked my local library and was surprised to learn they had not one abercrombie book in their network as he's frequently brought up on this board.

  12. #12
    Registered User Joe Abercrombie's Avatar
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    Aug 2006
    Quote Originally Posted by hippokrene View Post
    he's frequently brought up on this board.
    Like a cheap curry after a friday night binge.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rob B
    Joe will pop in and tell you should buy his books.
    Buy my books.


  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Abercrombie View Post
    Buy my books.

    Well, can't argue with that. Just got The Blade Itself today, hopefully will start reading it later.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Joe Abercrombie View Post
    Like a cheap curry after a friday night binge.

    Buy my books.


    Any chance of your book being released on the Kindle anytime soon? I'm sort of addicted to that damn thing and have been holding out.

  15. #15
    In their league for sure. Even if the rest of the book/series was a complete mess, which it isn't, it would still be entirely worth a buy just for the fight scene when you meet the real Bloody-Nine. There may be better action scenes in a book out there, but I've yet to meet one.

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