Prince of Thorns (The Broken Empire, #1) Prince of Thorns discussion

Question about the main character

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message 1: by Vnvnvn (new) - added it

Vnvnvn Before I start reading this I'd have to ask something.
So.., by looking through the reviews I came across a spoiler that involves the mc in a certain morally questionable scene, which I won't describe further. (It's not killing). I think people who've read the book know which scene I'm implying at.
Now I don't know if what he did was justifiable but I highly doubt that kind of behavior to be, no matter what. It seems like he's a quite despicable character, in the beginning.
My questions: How is the character growth of the mc? Does one grow to like him in the course of the story?(book 2 and 3 included)
Would be really helpful if you could answer these :)

Brian The scene in question is on the first page, so not a spoiler. It is meant to make you hate him immediately, and some would say this is a lazy way to make someone hate a character.

The question is how much you will like him after this point, and onward to books 2 and 3. He is despicable but also likeable and riveting. Also, his backstory is slowly explained and you will understand him. You may not ever forgive some of his actions, but he is interesting nonetheless.

Gianluca Vnvnvn wrote: "Before I start reading this I'd have to ask something.
So.., by looking through the reviews I came across a spoiler that involves the mc in a certain morally questionable scene, which I won't descr..."

The book is full of morally questionable behavior, especially from the main character. That's pretty much the central theme of the story; someone willing to do anything in order to reach his goals. The first few scenes are meant to show you that in the most direct way.
You discover the main character's motivation only later through flashbacks, which is a slow process that takes a good chunk of the book and is supposed to make you understand and eventually like him.

That being said, I did not enjoy this book.
Mostly, I didn't like the protagonist, and not because of his morally questionable behavior. I simply thought he wasn't a credible character, not to mention annoying as hell.
I don't want to get into too many details here, but the book starts with him - a 14 years old boy - leading a gang of adult criminals/murderers/rapists, talking cheap philosophy and acting tough. I just couldn't buy that.
With an (in my opinion) annoying protagonist like that, and a story that isn't memorable or particularly interesting, I really couldn't get into this book, which I thought also lacked a fair amount of world-building.

Obviously, this a purely subjective take on the novel. As you can see from the book's goodread page, most people seemed to like it, so I can't just say it's a waste of your time. But I can't recommend it either, especially if you don't like antiheroes in your books (which I personally do and still didn't enjoy in this one).

Marc Jones Im going to offer an alternative take to Gianluca.
I really enjoyed both the first book and series as a whole.
Jorg is a generally unlikeable person, he has some pretty good reasons for being the way he is but they dont really justify the terrible acts he often commits as short cuts to his long term goals.
Jorg only really gains insight into how terrible a person he has become and how his actions affect other but it doesnt really change him, hes still pulls some pretty horrible stuff in the final book but atleast he feels sort of bad about it.
World building really picks up in the second book and the plot expands beyond one boys revenge plot.
Stick with it if you can but if your offended so early on much worse is to come.

Gianluca Oh, yeah, I forgot to mention that I've only read the first novel.
But again, my dislike for Jorg has very little to do with his terrible actions throughout the story.

Marc Jones I had a pretty much total dislike of Jorg (maybe a tiny spark of pity) and even at the end of the series I would have gladly stuck a knife in his back.....but I kept reading because I felt he deserved his revenge and I wanted to see where it was all leading.

Brian Most find that their opinion changes about him after the first book, so it is hard to pin him down without reading the second and third. I considered stopping at the first because I wasn't really feeling it either (and not because he is despicable) but am happy I continued on. For one thing, the writing became a lot stronger, as there was actually a big gap between when the first and second were written.

Kenneth Geary I F*#KING love Jorg.

Sorry normally i try to keep my post clean but this guy is refreshing when most books have a shinny hero character of the highest moral values at the best we get morally grey and striving for goodness charaters, but in Jorg we get to see a villians story. Some call him an anti-hero but I disagree with that Jorg is a villian end of story. Yet somehow I always found myself rooting for him.

And honestly the first scene fell from my memory because as bad as that act is, it really isn't important.

Marc Jones I don,t think you can call Jorg pure villian , his actions in the final book are pretty heroic stuff that served the greater good rather than himself. Without dropping to spoilers he manages to achieve an epic heroic goal via some pretty cold blooded methods

Kenneth Geary Even his actions in the end are completely self-serving IMO, others may have benefited from it but that's just collateral good.

Brian I think he is somewhere in between where you are both placing him. He does have a few non self serving acts in the series, but they are few.

message 12: by Marc (new) - rated it 5 stars

Marc Jones Practically anything involving Gog was pretty much selfless act. Even Jorg admits his actions are motivated by a general well being towards him.

message 13: by Vnvnvn (new) - added it

Vnvnvn Seems like the opinions are pretty split on this matter.
I think I will give it a try at least and see for myself.

message 14: by Iris (new) - rated it 3 stars

Iris Hmm, in my opinion Jorg never changes. He's a scoundrel til the very end, but he has his own moral code. It's not what most people's would be, because some things are just wrong. But it's there and if it wasn't there then we wouldn't love him. He's the very best that Anti-Heroes have to offer.

Martin Jovanovski whow .. Who says that the things the main character does have to be justified?? .. Who says that that the main character have to be righteous??

A good written character need to be self-righteous. The things he does have to be reasonable to him only .. A good written character doesn't do things out of character ..

If the author wanted to make a 'bad' character, he only needed to make him amoral. After that, everything that the character do, it will makes sense, since a person without moral do what he wants to do. Add to that a higher goal, and you have a perfect character for a book..

personally i liked the series ... it has the right pace, flow, great character development and its refreshing from most of the other books .. It's also an interesting mix between epic fantasy and distopic fantasy ..

Highly recommended

message 16: by J.A. (new) - rated it 5 stars

J.A. Ironside I loved this entire series. Jorg is a fantastic character, at once compelling and morally dubious. Which was such a refreshing change after the re-hashed white knights of the last twenty years or so of fantasy. Jorg is unusual but a much more believable character IMO than Richard Rahl in Goodkinds seemingly endless 'Sword of Truth'Series. Now there was a character that I wanted to stab - if only so the books would stop coming!

Back to Jorg; if you've read any classics the odessey, the aneiad etc you'll see the reflection here; how a seemingly irredeemable character is the 'hero' and ultimately he is the man for the job, the ultimate goal. No he doesn't end up there for altruistic reasons. He's cut a blood drenched swathe to get there; but at the crux when fate turns on him, he does the only right thing. His reasons are irrelevant - by that point he is as much a tool of fate as master of his own destiny. I would have thought that Jorg having a classical education and quoting passages of greek sagas might have given the parallel away...

Yes, Jorg grows and changes. At the start he's n extremely intelligent 14 yr old, who lacks the wisdom he gains later. His attitude is that of a spoilt child pulling wings off flies, but even then he's not entirely lost to his own legend. By book two his judgement has matured. He is willing to recognise that what he does is terrible - it won't stop him doing it if it's part of how he gets to where he needs to go, but he has self awareness. By book three Jorg has learned to regret. Again he'll do what he chooses if it's part of his plan but he doesn't perform acts of cruelty and savagery without reason anymore.

If you're looking for a redemption story this might not be for you. Only in the loosest interpretation can you say he's ever redeemed. But he is engaging, he makes good points about the fallacy of human nature and there's something about a character that gets knocked down hard, many times, who stands up and sticks his middle finger up at the universe before proving that he has learned from that mistake and really his enemies probably should have killed him when they had the chance. At no point does he ever try and pass himself off as a good man. It's an odd moral code but it is there.
To be honest I find the actions of Characters in Song of Ice and Fire, far more inexplicable in terms of acting out of character.

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