Dfordoom's Reviews > The Black Company

The Black Company by Glen Cook
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Apr 03, 08

bookshelves: sf-fantasy
Read in December, 2003

The adventures of a company of warrior mercenaries in a medieval-type fantasy world, but told in what's presumably supposed to be a modern and grittily realistic manner, with the characters sounding like hard-bitten US marines in a bad Hollywood war movie. It's The Dirty Dozen in chainmail. This sort of thing can be done well, as in Mary Gentle's "Ash", but in "The Black Company" it becomes very tedious very fast. And whereas Mary Gentle actually knows about medieval warfare, this one gives the impression that the historical research done for it consisted of watching the Arnold Schwarzenegger "Conan the Barbarian" movie. It just doesn't have the feel of medieval warfare, it's more like descriptions of modern warfare but with rifles and bayonets crossed out and replaced by swords and crossbows. The characters are stereotypes, the plot is convoluted and silly, it’s all pathetically macho, and the clichés come thick and fast.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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Scott You and these other 5 fools should go back to the young adult section. If you want to read alternate history, do it, check your imagination at the door.


message 2: by James (new)

James I totally agree with your review. I heard so much hype for this book that when I read it I was so disappointed. The dialogue is just atrocious and the American military slang was awful.


Anirudh I had such fun reading this review :) "the characters sounding like hard-bitten US marines in a bad Hollywood war movie." - classic :)


message 4: by Gus (new) - rated it 5 stars

Gus Right because they had actual wizards in the middle ages... clearly realistic depiction of the middle ages is the point of all fantasy fiction.


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