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(The First Law #3)

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  89,617 ratings  ·  3,578 reviews
Für Logen, den Barbarenkrieger, sind die Zeiten siegreicher Schlachten vorbei – und dennoch steht ihm der größte Kampf seines Lebens bevor ... Zu viele Herren und zu wenig Zeit haben den zynischen Inquisitor Glokta in ganz andere Schwierigkeiten gebracht – unversehens steht er im Zentrum eines tödlichen Geheimnisses ... Als die Schatten des Bösen auf das Land fallen, hat d ...more
Paperback, 941 pages
Published June 18th 2011 by Heyne (first published March 20th 2008)
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Josh It's at least as good. Just...well, consider the tone the first two novels take. Tolkien this ain't. In fact, I'd say it's a complete subversion of…moreIt's at least as good. Just...well, consider the tone the first two novels take. Tolkien this ain't. In fact, I'd say it's a complete subversion of the sort of "quest fantasy" novels of the 50's-90's we're all so used to. I shudder to think how the Wheel of Time books would have ended had Abercrombie wrote them (shudder in a good way though; for one thing, they would have ended sooner).(less)
James It was. You won't regret time spent on this trilogy.
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4.28  · 
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 ·  89,617 ratings  ·  3,578 reviews

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Because, even after the first two volumes, every character will STILL surprise you. Because Glokta is the best fantasy character I've found since Tyrion Lannister. Because Logen is a mushroom-cloud-laying motherfucker. Because you should've seen it coming but you didn't. You really didn't.

Because even "gritty" fantasy writers are usually afraid to go this far against expectations. Because you will laugh. You will get angry. Because you will hate the ending. Because the ending is perfect. Becaus
"Say one thing for Last Argument of Kings, say it's dark fantasy at its best" Logen's father said. After finishing the book and the trilogy, I decided to give this book a rating of 5 stars. Why? well, as Logen Ninefingers always said "you have to be realistic about these things."

Last Argument of Kings is the conclusion to the First Law Trilogy and it completely delivered on all aspect of great quality dark fantasy. It provides a fitting ending to the trilogy, it's dark, funny, bloody, oh yes it'
mark monday
Jun 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy-modern
and so the excellent First Law trilogy concludes. this was a splendid experience and certainly a hearty one as well. many things to consider and many enjoyments to be had. a full meal! and quite a bitter feast at that.

and here is the Last Argument of the title, succinctly delivered by the ferocious sorceror Bayaz:
"Power makes all things right. That is my first law, and my last. That is the only law that I acknowledge."

this is a really marvelous series. bold in intent, clear in p
Kat  Hooper
Mar 31, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
ORIGINALLY POSTED AT Fantasy Literature.

Say one thing for this reviewer, say she's a weak-minded sucker.

She really enjoyed the first two books of Joe Abercrombie's The First Law trilogy. This story was original, had a unique style, fascinating characters, and a darkly cynical style. She liked it. It was fresh. But she was kind of hoping, even daring to expect, that the last book, Last Argument of Kings, might have an ending that was, if not perhaps exactly happy, at least somewhat satisfying.

Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
The end of this series is a cleverly crude mirroring of it’s opening, and it’s just so damn hilarious. I’m saying no more regarding that, but Abercrombie never fails to make me laugh. Logan Nine-fingers is such a great character; he really is the strongest aspect of this series.

“You can never have too many knives, his father had told him. Unless they're pointed at you, and by people who don't like you much. ”


His wise courage allowed him to defeat the impossible. Only he would have survived s
Okay, so here's the thing with this book and why I gave it no stars:

1) It's the third and final volume in a trilogy that up to this book was pretty much as good as fantasy gets: good characterizations, egaging plot, nice overall writing style, etc etc etc.

1a) I specifically liked the first two because they were surprisingly nasty, not dark mind you (no brooding emo heroes of the night), nasty.

1b) "Nasty" isn't meant sexually either, incidentally, in case you were flashing to Janet Jackson right
Dan Schwent
Mar 04, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, 2013
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 26, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing. This book probably deserves better than two stars, but I just can't bring myself to call it good, because I didn't really enjoy it even though I read it fairly quickly. Don't get me wrong: it's interesting enough, and the characters are still vaguely engaging, and there's plenty of action. By all means, the formula is there (even though it does feel a little bit tired).

So what's the problem? I guess I was just hoping Abercrombie would be able to salvage some of his characters and
Dirk Grobbelaar

The last book in Abercrombie’s dark fantasy trilogy. Done. Dusted.

It’s going to be a while before I’ve properly assimilated everything that happened over the course of the series. It’s quite something, and it’s well worth your time if you enjoy genre fiction.

Last Argument of Kings – thoughts

Strange and painful events seemed to follow in his wake like stray dogs barking behind the butcher’s wagon.

Like I mentioned in one of my earlier reviews, it isn’t clear whether this wants to be (dark) heroic
Robin (Bridge Four)
“Mercy and weakness are the same thing in war, and there's no prize for nice behavior.”

When your two favorite characters in a book are a master torturer and a warrior who occasionally is filled with so much bloodlust that he forgets who he is and is as likely to kill a friend as much as a foe you really shouldn’t be surprised to have mixed feelings at the end of the series.

But I was surprised. Maybe I’m too used to the series I’m reading ending by tying everything up neatly in a bow and giving
Mar 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, mystery
The Last Argument of Kings is a great ending to a superb fantasy trilogy. Don’t think this fantasy as light and ethereal – no, think dark, brutal and bloody. There are battles and battles and battles to be fought, and the most crucial is between Logen Ninefingers and his old friend come-enemy Bethod in the North.

This is just a wonderful trilogy that provides everything you need for a breathtaking page-turner. Great characters, a world of intrigue, battling nations, supernatural influence
Aug 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Secrets revealed! Plots twisting here and there! Maybe you could outguessed some of plots? The good news is even if you did outguessed a plot, it didn't make the story less fun. Some of the plot twists were actually simple, but the author's execution skill is marvelous. Oh yeah, your memory that still held the details of book one would be rewarded handsomely on this book.

4.5 stars

Last argument of kings is an appropriately epic, dark and brilliant ending to a trilogy filled with great characters and a beautifully crafted, intricate plot. It provides a definite(if somewhat disappointing) ending to the trilogy that still leaves space for the characters and story to be further explored in the following standalone novels.


Jezal's character development was easily the best written in this series and among the best I've seen in any fantasy. From his introduction
David Katzman
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This review is for all three books in the First Law trilogy. I was set to name this as the greatest fantasy trilogy that I've ever read. And yet the ending hit me so hard that I just can't muster up the enthusiasm that I had halfway through Book 3. Not to say that this isn't brilliant in so many ways. And while I respect the view of humanity as an honest and not unreasonable critique, it's hard to be quite as enthusiastic about something that, in the end, is so dark. Viewing our current society, ...more
"Book 3, the final one! We're almost there!"
"Yes, Sir, Mr.Abercrombie."
"So, let's see. We casted characters already and invented plots. What needs to be done now."
"Perhaps an ending?"
"Really? Aren't you enjoying my fabulous characters?"
"Of course, but you know, a good story needs an ending."
"Did Robert Jordan knew that? Does Martin think so?"
"Well, I'm not sure..."
"And they sold way more books than I did."
"Hm, this is true. But weren't you going somewhere with the story?"
"You're right, but maybe
Feb 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, audiobooks
Wow what a satisfying and thrilling conclusion to the first law series! Abercrombie does a full circle and connects the story arc beautifully in this last book! The characters all have defining and proper conclusions. Nothing is sugarcoated and much on the contrary this almost feels like a Grimm dark fantasy ending. Amazing characters, hilarious dialogue and non-stop action makes this a must read!

5 Stars
May 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy
This is the conclusion of a grimdark fantasy trilogy. At this point practically everything I can say about the plot will be full of spoilers, so the most generic description will have to do. A war is raging in the north between Union and united barbarians. Another war is about to start in the south: people led by powerful and practically indestructible flesh-eaters quietly prepare to conquer Union - unless the northern barbarians do it first. Everything seems to be lost, but some powerful people ...more
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: completed-series
Although "Before They Are Hanged" is still my favorite book in the trilogy, I finally decided to rate this book full 5 stars too. At first I was thinking about a 4.5 but now I realized, that the only issues I had are just fully representing what the whole series is about: That not everything happens in the way we want it to happen. It is about flawed characters which are able to do very questionable things in some of the most horrible situations we can imagine. When it comes to the complexity of ...more
Apr 07, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy

Reading other peoples reviews of this book makes me feel like a sourpuss only going for the 4 star rating. I fully enjoyed reading people’s reviews and bringing back the memories of those who I have since said my farewells to and glad to see that so many people differ on certain things such as favourite characters, whether they enjoyed the ending overall and if this is one of the better fantasy series to come onto the scene in recent years.

As a trilogy I can’t fault this series, the writi
Aug 14, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wow. Just finished, and that was a book that was just... wow. Made expectations, fulfilled them, broke them apart into little pieces and reassembled into a huge jagged collage of a work. Amazing. Glokta continues to be the character you would love to hate, except that he is the very essence of tortured humanity. Jezal grows beyond a self-involved ego into a man willing to stand for his beliefs--except that he remains manipulated and somewhat ignorant of the extent to which he is played. Logen un ...more
Mikko Karvonen
"Delightfully twisted, and evil." The excerpt from The Guardian tells everything you need to know about Joe Abercrombie. He writes twisted fantasy where the characters are as wicked and dark as the plot twists and morale is not a relevant consideration for any decision. And he writes it well. In short time he has become one of the leading names of the genre, mainly thanks to the First Law trilogy that concludes in the Last Argument of the Kings.

And after finally completing the trilogy, I can't h
Stjepan Cobets
Feb 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of fantasy
Excellent completion of the series, but I think the writer with this book just opened a fantastic world in which live characters from the book. I love writing Joe Abercrombie and high-maintenance I think I'll read a few more of his books. Honestly, sometimes a writer does not have any mercy on the main characters, but in a world that they live anyway no mercy for anyone. The book is so much upheaval, lies, and deception that you simply have to enjoy reading. I've enjoyed. If you like fantasy boo ...more
Oct 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lema by: Petrik Leo
Shelves: fantasy, favorites
[throws a bucket-load of stars at you]
I don't know where to start, it's been what a week? Still not freaking over it!
Reading this was one hell of a nerve-wracking emotional roller coaster, every time I add a fantasy series to my list of favorites of all time, I would think that there's no way I'll ever get to experience this intense emotion ever again (dramatic I know) but then some genius sociopath like Joe Abercombie would write something like this evil trilogy and Voilà! you are messed up for
Rusty Grey
Say one thing about Logen Ninefingers , say he's got a talent for turning a friend into an enemy .

In a timespan of two months I've finished a series which is going down to be one of my all time favorites . The First Law trilogy with its grim world , marvelous set of characters , ruthless politics and fantastic storyline has carved a place for itself in my heart . So here I'm again trying to write a review . I can't be getting into the details lest I enter spoiler territory .

Does the devil know
Aug 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hanne by: Fantasy Book Club Series
Shelves: fantasy

While reading the final hundred pages of this book, there is one quote that came to mind: “All this has happened before, and all this will happen again.” It’s from my favourite tv-series Battlestar Galactica but it could be a tagline on these series as well.

I have to admit after book 1 and 2 I thought that these trilogy was really good, but I didn’t fully understand the utter brilliance it supposedly had. Now after book 3, I get it. This last book is the culmination of so many things and shows
The Shayne-Train
Mar 18, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Say one thing for Joe Abercrombie, say he writes like a motherfucker.

I've been recommending this series to all of my fantasy-reading friends, most especially those all into the George R.R. Martin type of gritty-ass fantasy.

See, I did it myself. I hate it when Abercrombie gets compared to GRRM. But how do you avoid it? So I word it thus: in the world of dark, realistic fantasy, Martin is Hitchcock and Abercrombie is Peckinpah. That's the only way I can make that comparison and sleep at night. Plu
Mar 11, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: liked, fantasy
Just finished The Last Argument of Kings...

Mixed feelings.
Definitely it is not worth re-reading, otherwise it would be like Logen, pissing into the wind. Real life is depressing enough, why make it worse?
I didn't expect a happy ending, but everything, absolutely everything to be bad? While you have to be realistic is a good motto, the ending is not realistic because life is shit and people do not change is overplayed.

The Blade Itself starts with a chapter 1 - End, and The Last Argument of Kings
Skylar Phelps
Jun 02, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Say one thing about Joe Abercrombie, say the man can write!

I am still amazed by the quality of the prose and overall finesse of this series. I absolutely loved Abercrombie's writing style and respect the polished excellency that this entire series carries.

The profound depth of the characters is also something I must applaud. None of them were really 'the good guy' but I found that I loved them, not only DESPITE their faults but oftentimes BECAUSE of their faults.

My only complaint was of some of
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who don't mind being depressed; fans of the first two books
I don't know what I expected. Certainly not a happy ending for everyone. Certainly not that. But with 15 or so characters in a trilogy you'd think there'd be SOME kind of good.

I get it, I really do. Abercrombie's created this dark world. Torture, murder, rape, war, torture, battle, dismemberment, torture, wasting diseases, slavery, oh - and did I mention torture? Don't worry - Abercrombie's thoroughly convinced me that his world is a crappy place - a place where you'd be better off not being bor
Jan 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: who loves good fights and good homour
Recommended to Orient by: Milda Page Runner
It is the last book in The First Law trilogy (happy 'cause it ended quite good and sad 'cause it ENDED)and I can say for sure that it is the most striking in the trilogy and one of the most gripping stories I've read so far. My praises to the author
This books encircled me with action, magic, mysteries and did it wildly. And without a doubt it's the characters that rule this trilogy. The Bloody Northmen and the Union, with Bayaz pulling the strings have the key roles. The author is able to involv
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Joe Abercrombie was educated at Lancaster Royal Grammar School and Manchester University, where he studied psychology. He moved into television production before taking up a career as a freelance film editor. During a break between jobs he began writing The Blade Itself in 2002, completing it in 2004. It was published by Gollancz in 2006 and was followed by two other books in The First Law Trilogy ...more

Other books in the series

The First Law (3 books)
  • The Blade Itself (The First Law, #1)
  • Before They Are Hanged (The First Law, #2)
“I have learned all kinds of things from my many mistakes. The one thing I never learn is to stop making them.” 995 likes
“Rules are for children. This is war, and in war the only crime is to lose.” 311 likes
More quotes…