Before They Are Hanged by Joe Abercrombie

The Blurb On The Back:

How do you defend a city surrounded by enemies and riddled with traitors, when your allies can by no means be trusted, and your predecessor vanished without trace?  It’s enough to make a torturer want to run – if he could even walk without a stick – and Inquisitor Glotka needs answers before the Gurkish army comes knocking at the gates.

Northmen have spilled over the Angland border and are spreading fire and death across the frozen country.  Crown Prince Ladisla is poised to drive them back and win undying glory.  There is only one problem: he commands the worst armed, worst-trained and worst-led army in the world.

And Bayaz, the First of the Magi, is leading a party of bold adventurers on a mission through the ruins of the past.  The most hated woman in the South, the most feared man in the North, and most selfish boy in the Union make strange companions, but, if only they didn’t hate each other so much, potentially deadly ones.

Ancient secrets will be uncovered.  Bloody battles will be won and lost.  Bitter enemies will be forgiven – but not before they are hanged. 

The Review (Cut For Spoilers):

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Blackwing by Ed McDonald

The Blurb On The Back:

The Misery is a wasteland: a dangerous, corrupted frontier between the Republic and The Deep Kings.

When traitors, thieves and spies try to flee they run for The Misery, and often as not it’s Captain Ryhalt Galharrow’s job to bring them to heel beneath the fractured skies – provided they haven’t already fallen prey to the twisted creatures that inhabit the shifting polluted sands.  It’s a deadly place, even for a man of Galharrow’s experience.

But it’s a necessary place.  Because the Republic’s only other defence against The Deep Kings is Nall’s Engine, a weapon of incomparable power that protects the wasteland’s border.  As long as it doesn’t start to falter … 

The Review (Cut For Spoilers):

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The Blade Itself by Joe Abercrombie

The Blurb On The Back:

Logen Ninefingers, infamous barbarian, has finally run out of luck.  Caught up in one feud too many he’s about to become a dead barbarian, leaving nothing behind but bad songs and dead friends.

Jezal dan Luthar, paragon of selfishness, has nothing more dangerous in mind than winning glory in the fencing circle.  But war is brewing, and on the battlefields of the frozen North they fight by altogether bloodier rules.

Inquisitor Glotka, cripple turned torturer, would like nothing better than to see Jezal come home in a box.. But then he hates everyone.  Cutting treason out of the heart of the Union one confession at a time leaves little room for friendships – and his latest trail of corpses could lead straight to the rotten heart of government … if he can just stay alive long enough to follow it …  

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What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky by Lesley Nneka Arimah

The Blurb On The Back:

A childless woman resorts to forbidden magic in her quest for a baby.  A widow boils with rage at the grudging welcome her daughters receive in her sister’s home.  In a devastated, not too distant future, a ‘grief worker’ discovers a miraculous ability to remove emotional pain – at a price.

The characters in What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky are men and women who want things that remain impossible or out of reach.  What unites them is the toughness of lives where opportunities are scant, and where fortunes can change faster than the flick of a switch.

Conjuring worlds at once familiar and unsettlingly different, What It Means When A Man Falls From The Sky showcases the work of a writer of startling promise at the beginning of an exciting literary career.

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