The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie. Book review

The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie. Gollancz (2011)

Reviewed by Jim Mcleod

2011 kicked of in spectacular fashion, with the release of Abercrombie’s The Heroes.  This was, for me anyway, one of the most anticipated fantasy releases of the year.  Set in the same world as his First Law novels, the basic premise of the story is simple: there is going to be a battle at some standing stones known as The Heroes, the battle takes place and we see the aftermath.

Pretty simple plot, yes? But this is where Abercrombie’s masterful, and intelligent story telling comes into play. The Heroes, in the hands of a less talented author could easily have slipped into seriously B movie realms, all action with zero substance. However, Abercrombie infuses the novel with humour, wit, action and blood loss, yes lots of blood loss. The battle scenes are so intense and well realised that we can almost hear the roar of the battle and smell the rivers of blood flowing throw the battlefield. By creating very believable characters, Abercrombie manages to touch on themes like the futility of war, and what is a hero? Without ever sounding preachy or clich’d.

An extremely well written, thought provoking blockbuster of a novel. This is an excellent book; I highly recommend it.

The Heroes by Joe Abercrombie. Gollancz (2011)

Reviewed by Jim Mcleod

2011 kicked of in spectacular fashion, with the release of Abercrombie’s The Heroes.  This was, for me anyway, one of the most anticipated fantasy releases of the year.  Set in the same world as his First Law novels, the basic premise of the story is simple: there is going to be a battle at some standing stones known as The Heroes, the battle takes place and we see the aftermath.

Pretty simple plot, yes? But this is where Abercrombie’s masterful, and intelligent story telling comes into play. The Heroes, in the hands of a less talented author could easily have slipped into seriously B movie realms, all action with zero substance. However, Abercrombie infuses the novel with humour, wit, action and blood loss, yes lots of blood loss. The battle scenes are so intense and well realised that we can almost hear the roar of the battle and smell the rivers of blood flowing throw the battlefield. By creating very believable characters, Abercrombie manages to touch on themes like the futility of war, and what is a hero? Without ever sounding preachy or clich’d.

An extremely well written, thought provoking blockbuster of a novel. This is an excellent book; I highly recommend it.