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Publisher's Summary

They say Black Dow's killed more men than winter, and clawed his way to the throne of the North up a hill of skulls. The King of the Union, ever a jealous neighbour, is not about to stand smiling by while he claws his way any higher. The orders have been given and the armies are toiling through the northern mud. Thousands of men are converging on a forgotten ring of stones, on a worthless hill, in an unimportant valley, and they've brought a lot of sharpened metal with them.
Over three bloody days of battle, the fate of the North will be decided. But with both sides riddled by intrigues, follies, feuds and petty jealousies, it is unlikely to be the noblest hearts or even the strongest arms that prevail.
Three men. One battle. No Heroes.
©2011 Joe Abercrombie (P)2011 Orion Publishing Group Limited
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Jason on 03-09-11

Great Book , Great Author, Great narrator.

This book is an treasure. Joe Abercrombie delivers another masterpiece of a novel. Get the books in order, but get them all. This is the latest one.
Michael Page does an smashing job of narration, as always. He is one of the best .

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful


By J. Baars on 04-27-11

People in battle

As in real life, all characters are trying to stay afloat, while being pulled down by their past, their weaknesses and ambitions. Although the story is about a bloody battle, with wizards fighting at both sides, to me this is the most memorable theme of the book, It sets it apart from the black and white characters usually found in epic fantasy novels. Well done, looking forward to the next book

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By Gavin on 01-21-12

New recording with the original narrator

This book was originally sold with a change of narrator from the First Law books however the publisher has taken note and re-recorded this title and the following book with Steven Pacey. If you bought this with the other narrator you can re-download the title and it will be the new version with Steven Pacey. Excellant news given his brilliant performance.

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16 of 16 people found this review helpful


By Paul on 04-24-13

The best of Joe Abercrombie's books

some of the reviews put me off initially about how this was set over too short a period of time and it was an experiment by the author, however I found it the most enjoyable of all of Joe Abercrombie's books (which I stumbled across whilst feeling lost, looking for something to replace the whole game of thrones series which I'd just listened to back to back NB Game of Thrones series is fantastic but Steven Pacey is a far superior narrator). I like the lack of magic and I like the 'heroes' on each side of the battle. The work is thought provoking. I'm missing Steven Pacey's voice already and will now no doubt download something else he's narrated with my credit that's just arrived.

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14 of 14 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By mr tobie md date on 02-04-18

A decent tale of war

A more contained plot yet still a quality yarn. A few familiar folk but more then a few missing, back to the mud or otherwise. If you like your battle stories then this is for you.

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By Sean A. Hanson on 10-31-16

A familiar Yarn.

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

If a friend was looking for a little escapism and a capable distraction I'd say this was worth a credit.

Would you be willing to try another book from Joe Abercrombie? Why or why not?

I've read Joe Abercrombie before and enjoyed The Blade Itself series. I was in the mood for what he can deliver and when I'm in the mood again I'll see what there is to offer.

What about Steven Pacey’s performance did you like?

Steven Pacey was brilliant. If I didn't know I would have sworn there was a full cast of narrators.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

On DVD or Netflix. I wouldn't pay Opening Night prices

Any additional comments?

This is a good story well told with some memorable characters and a writer in control of his craft. It just lacked surprise.

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