Half a King
A classic coming-of-age tale set in a vivid and richly imagined world.
‘I swore an oath to be avenged on the killers of my father. I may be half a man, but I swore a whole oath’
Prince Yarvi has vowed to regain a throne he never wanted. But first he must survive cruelty, chains and the bitter waters of the Shattered Sea itself. And he must do it all with only one good hand.
But I can say this: This particular book is worth the wait.
I've been a fan of Abercrombie's stuff for years. His worldbuilding is great, his characterization is marvelous, he writes an amazing action scene...
Yeah, simply said, his craft is undeniably excellent.
That said, sometimes I put down one of his books and think to myself, "Well, I guess ...more
Once, after his father had hit him in a rage, Yarvi's mother had found him crying. The fool strikes, she had said. The wise man smiles, and watches, and learns.
Half a King is the kind of book that creeps up on you gradually, painting a picture of kingdoms and slavery and backstabbing until you think this is basically another fantasy set in the comfort zone of the genre, and then it hits you hard when you least expect it. I kid you not, there were three huge "twists" in this book ...more
There were four parts in this epic fantasy story. The first held little interesting scenes and turned out to be quite banal for nothing surprising happened. We were introduced to the main character and his family, which was good, but, really, other than that it was the basic king-died-needs-replacement-hero-becomes-king-marriage-betrayal and everything felt really flatly executed. The second part though was different and original. In each part, actually, we met new characters. There were in fact ...more
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads
It's not a secret that YA fantasy is second to only UF on my preferred genres list. It's also not a secret that YA fantasy has been falling flat for me recently. With the exception of Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas, the last 6 or 8 YA fantasies I've read have been disappointing at best, DNFs at worst.
It was getting to the point that I was doubting myself, thinking that I was in some kind of genre-specific book funk, and m ...more
There I was, peacefully reading a decent, interesting YA fantasy, a sort of Viking-flavored coming-of-age story about the adventures of a physically weak, studious 15 year old prince with a crippled hand. Prince Yarvi briefly reigns over the kingdom of Gettland when his father and brother die, but he's betrayed and abruptly descends from the throne to abject slavery. Yarvi, determined to regain the throne and take revenge on those who betrayed him, has to overcome various obstacles (and people) ...more
From the many cages ranked around the walls they looked down on him now, the doves, and one great bronze-feathered eagle which must have brought a message from the High King in Skekenhouse. The one person in the lands around the Shattered Sea who had the right to make requests of Yarvi now. Yet here he sat against the dropping-speckled wall, picking at the nail on his shriveled hand, buried beneath a howe of demands he could never fulfill.
As someone who has stepped out of her YA comfort zone ...more
I got this from Netgalley.
After the unbridled awesomeness of The First Law and its spinoffs, I was curious to see if Joe Abercrombie could tell a story set in another world. Turns out he can.
While Half a King is marketed as Young Adult (or Adults That Don't Enjoy Reading About Sex and/or Vi ...more
Prince Yarvi is born with a crippled hand and will not let himself or the reader forget that he is therefore half a man because he can't even hold a shield. Yarvi was never meant to be king, but all sorts of twisted schemes ensue and he finds himself on the throne... (view spoiler) ...more
The fool strikes. The wise man smiles, and watches, and learns. Then strikes.
Half a King is what I would call a very traditional fantasy. It’s about kings and queens, princes and the fight for the throne, wars and conspiracies. It is set in a world that resembles medieval Europe/the Viking era and in many ways it isn’t a very original story.
It is utterly fantastic. This book really demonstrates what a great writer Joe Abercrombie is, that he was able to take something so traditional and ...more
THE TWISTS! THE TURNS! THE CONSPIRACIES! THE BETRAYALS!
THEY ALL FUCKING BUUUUUURN
MY HEART CAN'T TAKE IT
I DO NOT KNOW WHAT TO THINK
I DO NOT KNOW WHO TO TRUST
IS THERE SOMEONE PLOTTING AGAINST ME TOO
*eyes shift to father*
*eyes shift to mother*
*eyes shift to brothers*
*eyes shift to grandmother*
Curious..... very curious indeed....
*eyes shift to dog*
Okay, you're cool, dog. I doubt you even know what I'm talking about.
This. Book. Is. AWESOME.
This. Book. Is ...more
Just as good the second time through. Still a 4.5 star read.
This is my very first Joe Ambercrombie book and as an avid high fantasy reader I can’t believe I haven’t stumbled onto him before. He does a great job at blending a great world with fantastic characters and story without getting caught up in the drudgery of over explaining everything. After finishing this I was sure of three things, I will anxiously await the next installment of this series, ...more
I hate to give away any of the story because it's an adventure I think you should take without any foresight into it.
RUN AND READ THIS BOOK!!
I'm so glad I started reading fantasy or I would have missed this gem. I will ...more
Predictable in the beginning
I’m still quite ...more
The only things I wasn't sold on was the averageness of the story line. It had some epic twists at the end an ...more
This was really good. I'm not even gonna go into what the book is about because I accidentally read a spoiler in a review when I started reading it that wasn't marked and I don't want to do that to anybody. It's fantasy - the way fantasy should be. No endless boring descriptions about anything and everything. The pacing is great. I *loved* the characte ...more
"The fool strikes," she had said. "The wise man smiles, watches, and learns.
Sorry if this review contains a lot of incoherent gushing and fangirling. I just sent my brain to her room for not making me read this sooner.
Come to think of it, all of you deserve to be there, too. You know who you are, my so-called friends with your four-star, five-star reviews. Why didn't you tell me to read this sooner??? All of you, room.
Yarvi is about to take his minister's test when new ...more
Yarvi, unfavoured second son (one with a frowned upon crippled hand), was never supposed to be king but had to step into the role after his father and brother were murdered by a rival king under the banner of a peace meeting. Yarvi swears vengeance but soon finds he has as many enemies in his own court as he has in rival kingdoms!
I was ...more
With his latest effort Abercrombie breaks the mould he has set for himself with his hugely successful series of 'grimdarks' and tries his hand at YA. While this book lacks the depth and complexity of his previous work this is still a fast-paced, enjoyable read filled with betrayal, hardship and adventure and fleshed out with well-written characters.
"I swore an oath to avenge the death of my father. I may be half a man, but I swore a whole oath.”
Yarvi is 'half a man', a crippled p ...more
Since starting to read fantasy again several years ago, there have been a few authors whose names have been constantly whispered in my ear as the “it” writers to try: Peter V. Brett, Brent Weeks, Mark Lawrence, and especially Joe Abercrombie. From all the gushing, I was led to believe that reading a novel penned by Lord Grimdark (as Mr. Abercrombie is called) would not only enthrall me in his fantasy spell but leave me a meth-like addict begging for mor ...more
Buddy read with Alexa
Thank you NetGalley for providing me a copy for review.
Dark Fantasy 3.5 stars
Strong men are many, wise men are few.
I LOVED IT!! LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVED IT! Here is why...
A man swings the scythe and the ax, a man pulls the oar and makes fast the know. Most of all a man hold the shield. A man holds the line. A man stands by his shoulder-man. What kind of man can do none of these things?...more
I didn't ask for half a hand.
This is my second Joe Abercrombie book, and after the slight disappointment of Best Served Cold, it took me a year to come back to him. Don’t get me wrong, it had all tell-tale signs of a great author, it was just inconsistent in its grim darkness vomiting rainbows at the end. Thus, I approached Half a King wary and with my snark unsheathed. Needlessly. The adventur ...more
Half a King is marketed as a Young Adult novel so I’m also going to label it as such, but doing so also feels wrong somehow. It’s not just because it is so different and unconventional compared to what we may think of as “mainstream” YA out there, but I also think adult fantasy readers or those familiar with Joe Abercrombie’s gritty adult fantasy novels will no doubt feel right at home reading this too. Now, if you’re th ...more
After sleeping on it, I've decided to lower this to a 3 on Goodreads, but just know that if I could give it a 3.5 I would. I still recommend this one, it just isn't quite a 4 star read to me. Let me explain:
Half a King is a story of the underdog and revenge and a band of thieves. It has so many tropes and at times the dialogue is quite cliche. But the author occasionally does something so interesting and unexpect ...more
There is tremendous pressure for authors to ratchet up their performance with each successive volume. Abercrombie set the bar impossibly high for himself with his magnificent FIRST LAW trilogy, and then proceeded to top himself for three successive stand-alone volumes. The expectations for this latest were so charged you could smell the ozone from a mile away.
Abercrombie's secret is character. He is a master of making us love and identi ...more
Pero he de reconocer que no he sido capaz de sentirme identificada con ningún personaje, no me han parecido unos personajes completos ni complejos, sino simples marionetas en manos del autor. ...more
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