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Justin Landon

Rereading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, Last Argument of Kings: “The Seventh Day” and “Too Many Masters”

Abercrombie rereaders, thank you for your patience. I’ve been traveling for work the last few weeks and trying to get these written has been a challenge. I have a particularly hard time writing while in a hotel room. I find them to be one of the Circles of Hell. And I’m like Brother Longfoot. You can’t shut me up when I’m comfortable, but torture me a little and I’m a gibbering mess!

Anyway, the first chapter this week is terribly sad as we lose one of the few characters who seems to have a heart. The second chapter we watch Glokta squirm under the thumb of Valint in Balk. Unfortunately, we’re no closer to finding out what the hell the bank is all about.

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Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread

Rereading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, Last Argument of Kings: “The Fourth Day” and “The Perfect Couple”

As you may have noticed, the reread went on a brief two week hiatus. Apologies! Things got a little crazy for me professionally and I simply couldn’t keep up. The good news is that we’re back now, and hopefully won’ t be rudely interrupted again as we race to the finish like in Last Argument of Kings and the entire First Law Trilogy.

Some long awaited events happen in today’s chapters. Well, one happens and the other almost happens, promising that it surely will in the coming days. For the former, Jezal gets married. For the second, Logen feels the Bloody Nine creeping up behind him. As it turns out, Jezal should dread the coming of his wife as much as Logen dreads the overpowering need to kill. Comforting, right?

[On to the chapters…]

Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread

Rocket Talk Episode 53: Renee Williams and Shaun Duke

In this week’s podcast episode, Justin talks with Renee Williams and Shaun Duke, editors of Speculative Fiction 2014. Available now from Book Smugglers Publishing, SpecFic ’14 is a survey of the years best online reviews, essays, and commentary. The conversation covers the contents of the anthology, the year’s themes, and the mechanics of identifying what makes a piece of non-fiction “the best.”

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Series: Rocket Talk: A Tor.com Podcast

Remembering the Future in Ken Liu’s The Grace of Kings

There’s a famous quote from George Santayana that says, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” It’s often used to emphasize the importance of cultural history. If you don’t know where you come from, how can you know where you’re going? It’s a powerful, if exceedingly trite, message. But, it rings true.

Unfortunately, the past also possesses deep nostalgia, which is too often seen through rose colored glasses. How often have we held up some period in history as the ideal? And how often do we see this reflected in fiction? It’s interesting then when something like The Grace of Kings comes along, in which Ken Liu attempts to reflect on history, to almost wallow in it, while at the same time confronting all of its baggage and remembering it not as it was, but as he would like it to be.

Although that’s rather getting ahead of things a bit.

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Rereading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, Last Argument of Kings: “Prepared for the Worst” and “The Habit of Command”

Well, last week I lamented Ferro’s absence and although we don’t see her this week, we get some suggestion that she will soon be back on screen. So, with that in mind, take the following statement for what it’s worth: I really can’t help but be frustrated by the lack of Hulk Hogan in Last Argument of Kings.

Alright? Everyone see what I did there? Let’s see how powerful this reread really is. In the meantime, I wrote up some chapters.

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Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread

Rereading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, Last Argument of Kings: “The Trap” and “Horrible Old Man”

Where is Ferro? Are we going to see any more of her? At this point in the story it feels like we’ve really lost one of our primary characters. Last seen laughing at Jezal’s coronation, she doesn’t seem to have any further role to play. The Seed was never found, Logen has gone North, Bayaz told her to stay close, but for what?

She feels like a dangling loose end as we catapult toward a climax to the First Law Trilogy. I trust she’ll show back up and be significant. I think.

[This week’s chapters…]

Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread

Rocket Talk, Episode 48: Marc Simonetti Talks Working In Terry Pratchett’s Discworld

In this episode of Rocket Talk, Justin is joined by French artist Marc Simonetti to talk about his work on Sir Terry Prachett’s Discworld Series, as well as his background as a working illustrator. The conversation also touches on the differences in the French and English speaking markets.

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Series: Rocket Talk: A Tor.com Podcast

Rereading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, Last Argument of Kings: “Fortunes of War” and “The Kingmaker”

Holy crap. Don’t do to Disney World if you want to come home refreshed and ready to write. Sweet baby Bayaz, I’m exhausted. I wasn’t aware that children under six had the potential to murder with enthusiasm. You learn something everyday!

In our chapters this week, there’s little enthusiasm. Two things Abercrombie has been setting up for the entire series finally go boom—Burr’s Burps and Bayaz’ machinations. While the former is likely solved for all time, the latter is just beginning its onion like revelations. Stay tuned.

[On to Fortunes of War…]

Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread

Rocket Talk Episode 46: Courtney Schafer

In this episode of Rocket Talk, Justin is joined by Courtney Schafer, the author of the Shattered Sigil Trilogy. She and Justin talk about her diverse interests in mountaineering and figure skating, her first two books The Whitefire Crossing and The Tainted City, her tumultuous relationship with Night Shade Books, and her third novel The Labyrinth of Flame, which she’s currently Kickstarting.

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Series: Rocket Talk: A Tor.com Podcast

Rocket Talk Episode 44: James L. Sutter and Mordicai Knode

James L. Sutter, the managing editor at Paizo Publishing, and Mordicai Knode, a National Accounts Coordinator for Macmillian, visit Rocket Talk to discuss the Pathfinder Tales novels and their new arrangement with Tor Books. The conversation looks at the nature of series fiction, how tie-in fiction works (or doesn’t work), and what Pathfinder is all about.

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Series: Rocket Talk: A Tor.com Podcast

Reading Joe Abercrombie’s First Law Trilogy, The Last Argument of Kings: “Too Many Knives” and “Best of Enemies”

I’m going to Disney World today, so thankfully, there isn’t much butchery in this week’s chapters. There’s something incompatible about meat cleavers and the Magic Kingdom. I mean, there is certainly some gruesome bits, per our favorite Inquisitor, but no one gets stabbed! Or slashed! Or burned! It’s almost like a Carebear episode.

Kind of…not really. There is that toe crushing hammer to contend with.

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Series: The Joe Abercrombie First Law Trilogy Reread