Half a War by Joe Abercrombie

Danica

Queen of the boards!
Staff member
#1
8/10 it was awesome and i loved every minute of it. Not new and original characters but i loves reading about them and some big twists at the end.
 

MorteTorment

Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
#2
Wait! It's already out! But amazon say that it's not out until like the end of July.

http://www.amazon.com/Half-War-Shattered-Sea-Abercrombie/dp/0804178453

Also....

I don't usually go for this type of book, but it just seems really interesting. I'm tempted to skim the first two books(Yes, If I do this I actually WILL be skimming :p ) and read it with you guys. Do you think I should?
 
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MorteTorment

Hired Nicomo Cosca, famed soldier of fortune
#5
Ok, sorry about being so desperate, I've calmed down a bit.

Just listened to your audio review. First of all, really cute, pleasant voice. I can see myself listening to reviews for books that I have no interest in, but wanting to literally hear your thoughts, and getting into things that I wouldn't normally as a result.

Anyways, you made the book seem even more tempting. I'll consider your words an official decree from the queen of the fantasy fandom. Espeically since you told me that it got pushed the august.
 

Jon Snow

No Power in the Verse can stop me
Staff member
#6
7.5 for me

Wished it wasn't YA. Didn't like the beginning but it really picked up.

@MorteTorment Danica and I got ARCs
 

Bethan

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#7
He's a meany! Hes a great big meany that doesn't give a shit!!!
 

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Bethan

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#8
Oof, finished it! Loved it! Don't care that's YA I still found it ticked all the boxes.

In particular, the thing I enjoyed the most was
the fact that because Yarvi was the protagonist in the first book, I presumed he'd be a trustworthy character. But even characters whose perspective who don follow grow and change. So his poisoning King Uthil in the second book did surprise me, and it set me up for this one in that I didn't trust him at all and kind of expected him to be the traitor. And his reveal at the end was so poignant; I love how A can a me you love a character, learn to hate him, then feel sorry for him once again.

I definitely think this is the darkest book of the trilogy. Not everyone gets their traditional happy ending. I like this, why sugar coat stories just because they're aimed at a you ger audience? Someone on twitter commented that killing off characters is getting old, and as much as i grieved to read about the deaths
was genuinely beginning to like Grom-gil-Gorm and believe he maybe deserved a bit of happiness with Skara, that he deserved to have the chance to be something other than a killer
I do believe they were necessary to the progression of the story and character development. It can't be all fluffy kittens and rainbows and White Wizards.

Finally, id really like to know what people's opinions are of the "elf ruins" etc?
is this a post apocalyptic world that has regressed?
 

TomTB

Super Moderator
Staff member
#9
Finished!

Probably my least favourite book of the series. Still, 8.0/10 is my rating.

I didn't particularly like the post-apocalyptic elements in this one. I didn't mind the hints and suggestions to a post - apocalyptic setting earlier on in the series, but I wish it had stayed that way. Trotting off and arming themselves with machine guns and shotguns just didn't work for me.

Yarvi's development seemed too quick as well. I liked his journey throughout the series, but the way he ended up, from the sweet innocent boy at the start, was somewhat OTT. I did enjoy the direction JA took him in though!

All the characters were great, I don't think the series was affected by its YA branding, and (as is always the case with JA) I would recommend to all who would care to listen!
 

Bethan

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#10
I like that Yarvis development was so quick, that the turn of events landed him in too deep before he realised. Sometimes it's hard to see how far and fast you've fallen and I think this character is a good representation of that

It did very much feel like the guns were a cop out =/ I liked how a whole base of superstition had arisen from the relics from the past though, how they interpreted the remains and what they represented in their culture.
 

TomTB

Super Moderator
Staff member
#11
I don't think it (the post-apocalyptic part) was particularly original or thoughtful of him if I'm being brutal, which is one of the issues I had. I couldn't stop thinking of a certain other trilogy by a certain other author based in the SouthWest of England, whilst reading parts of this book. Not a major negative, just something that irked me a touch.
 

Bethan

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#12
I don't think it (the post-apocalyptic part) was particularly original or thoughtful of him if I'm being brutal, which is one of the issues I had. I couldn't stop thinking of a certain other trilogy by a certain other author based in the SouthWest of England, whilst reading parts of this book. Not a major negative, just something that irked me a touch.
o_O
 

TomTB

Super Moderator
Staff member
#13
I don't want to spoil this other trilogy for you in case you ever decide to read it (I'm thoughtful like that :happy:), but when / if you do, you'll remember this and agree with me I'm sure.
 

Bethan

Listens to The Unbeliever whine about life
#14
I'm going to be forever reading trilogies with this in mind now :joyful:
 

Jon Snow

No Power in the Verse can stop me
Staff member
#15

Griffin

Journeyed there and back again
#17
I have to say this was the lesser of the three books in the Shattered Sea trilogy. I didn't nearly connect as well with the two characters Raith and Skara as with the characters of the previous books. I did like Koll though. The first part of the book remained a bit subpar for me, but things went very quickly (and slightly too easily) towards the end.

Over the course of the second and third book the character development of Father Yarvi seemed to have been accelerated into quite dark territory. A barely recognise anything of that young boy a thousand pages earlier.

I didn't really like the post-apocalyptic touch (well - more than a touch by the end) on the story. The way Abercrombie used the 'Elf-weapons' was abysmal. Minus point for that. Apart from that I liked the final quarter of the book. Everything was tied up nicely and there remained some twists to make sure this wasn't an 'all ends well' story, but then, like we really expected that from Lord Grimdark.

Conclusion: 7/10.
 

João Ribeiro

Journeyed there and back again
#19
My least favorite of the series. The ending seems a trademark Abercrombie.
He just can't let anyone be happy in the end can he?

I'd say 7.5 out of 10
 

Cyphon

Journeyed there and back again
#20
Finished this up today (audiobook version) and have been through this trilogy over the past couple of weeks. I have never claimed to be a fan of Abercrombie and this book/trilogy didn't do anything to change that. First the positives:

- The one good thing I have always said about JA is he does well writing grey characters. You really see the growth or un-growth if you will, the struggles and the dark and light in each character. That continued in this trilogy. I think the best of it was probably Yarvi. From the first book to the last you could a tremendous change in the character. I thought the development was pretty rushed but I can still appreciate the development nonetheless. On the flip side of my compliment, while I think he does a great job developing and creating this characters I have just never found much interest or connection with any of them. There isn't a character in this trilogy I wish I got to know more of or read more about.

- It ended better than it started. In my opinion this was easily the best book of the trilogy. Had the same kind of grey character POV's without the boring travel and basically plot about nothing. There are a lot of series we can all point to where sometimes the books trend downward as they go but that didn't happen here.

Now for the negatives:

- JA cannot write even a slightly interesting plot. I don't remember every detail of the First Law stuff but I do remember not finding the plot to be very intriguing. The same happened here. Even the twists (which I usually love in a story) I saw coming a mile away which lessened any appreciation I could have had for them. It was all incredibly mundane.

- As with the plot, I don't think his action scenes are all that well done either. All very elementary in my opinion. I believe there was one fight that was solid and that was Yorn? vs Gorm? Audiobook so I don't know the spellings lol.

- The magic was awful. Almost no explanation on it's background, how it is used, it's limitations etc....Everyone can just pick it up and use it relentlessly with no knowledge of it or training and there was no counter to it. Probably the worst use of it I have read to date.

I will leave it at that. Needless to say I am not an Abercrombie fan and will not be picking up anymore of his works if he continues putting new stuff out. As I said, he does great things with grey characters and while characters are more or less the most important thing to me, I just can't ever get into his characters.

6.5/10

Trilogy score: 6/10