Opinions on Best Served Cold are continuing to spring up like mushrooms on a damp and misty autumn morning. Good thing they delayed the sending out of the ARCs to avoid loads of reviews appearing six months before publication. Now they’re all appearing three months before. I only invite you to examine the review at Dreamwatch Total Sci-Fi from the youthful-seeming yet strangely hirsute Den Patrick:
“Harsh language, unrelenting violence and flawed or broken characters are de rigueur in Abercrombie’s bleak fantasy world. However, it’s the deft humour, the bruised wisdom and the entirely likeable (but no less treacherous, lethal, selfish and proud) characters that really keep the pages turning … Fans of Abercrombie’s work will not be disappointed by his latest offering, which features all his usual hallmarks: cold steel, black comedy, fully realised characters and internecine struggles, both personal and epic.”
He gives me 9/10, which is scraping the bottom end of what I would consider acceptable, of course, but we’ll let it pass for now… Meanwhile, Jared at the interestingly named Pornokitsch has taken a gander:
“Best Served Cold is packed with engaging characters that pin the reader from the first page and refuse to let go. Through their dark hours and their (brief) moments of brilliant triumph, Monzcarro, Shivers and Cosca are funny, fascinating, inspiring and painfully, wonderfully human. Although it is a treat for the reader to explore Abercrombie’s world, the real pleasure is in the company we get to keep while doing so.”
And finally Graeme with an ‘e’ (or two, in fact) has finished up the book and passes judgement upon it at Graeme’s Fantasy Book Review:
“Best Served Cold is a sordid examination of the lowest points of the human condition. Everyone is out for themselves and they don’t care who they have to step on to get what they want.”
Well they say one should write what one knows…
“There are battles that are about as real as you could possibly imagine although you may not want to after you’ve read about them. People actually respond in ways that seem reasonable given the situations that they face. There’s even a noble goat with important lessons to teach us… All of this results in a book that gives us a better look at a wider world only hinted at in the First Law trilogy … Best Served Cold was sat fairly high on my Most Anticipated Books of 2009 list, now it’s firmly on my Favourite Books of 2009 List. Read it.”
I take no interest in numerical ratings, as you all know. But I note in passing that Graeme gave the book 10/10. Top Marks. I’m no mathematician, but I make that 100%.
Alas, unlike Graeme, you won’t be able to read Best Served Cold until June. But you can get one over on him and turn the tables by doing something he hasn’t. Yes, you guessed it.
You can buy the book right now…