Robin Wiley's Reviews > The Blade Itself

The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie
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's review
Mar 20, 2009

liked it
Read in April, 2009

I liked this book. There's a lot to like.

Logan is a barbarian and he is a badass. But when he gets really mad, he is NineFingers, and he is a legend. There will be broken bones, blood, and a trail of bodies. Great fight scenes.

Bayaz is a Mage. He's fat, old, bald and speaks with that half-smile, cryptic speak that made you like Gandalf and Dumbledore, but wonder if they had the chops. And when he gets ticked, you really remember why you loved Gandalf and Dumbledore.

There is Glokta. For the Tyrion Lannister fans, just trust me when I tell you Glokta is right up there in that part of spectrum. That will be enough for you. For those of you who don't know Tyrion, Glokta is this deformed, crippled torture professional who has all the best lines. He used to be the best swordsman, the hero, the guy the ladies swooned over, the guy on the fast track up through the army ranks - and then got captured during an epic battle and was tortured for 2 years. Now he's broken, bitter, and in constant pain with two fantastic sidekicks and no friends. He's the smartest guy in the room, and the most detested.

The fight scenes are bone cracking goodness. The magic, when you get it - is WOW!

So why 3 stars? I struggled with this book from page 50 - 280. From character introduction until big finale, there is too little of the above characters, and too much of Jezal, an arrogant, egocentric, jerkass who only cares about doing as little as possible in the army - to achieve maximum status - and marry the richest noble's daughter available. Meanwhile, his hobbies include drinking, gambling and bedding the loveliest women available. Since this is the first of a trilogy, I suspect Jezal's character will have a wonderful transformation, thus, all the time spent on him and his current worthless state. However, it was tedious for me, like reading a physics book tedious. My recommendation, breeze lightly through the Jezal chapters, and relish ALL the other stuff - because IT IS GOOD.

Here's to the next book...
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Reading Progress

04/04/2009 page 329
63.64% "On page 280 this book finally came to life and stopped feeling like a textbook! Wahoo!"

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