The Heroes Minus Nineteen Days

January 8th, 2011

Don’t know if you’re aware of this, but there’s this book coming out at the end of January called The Heroes.  As one would hope, a veritable tornado of publicity is beginning to sweep across the parched dustbowl that is the January sf&fnal press, both print and internet.  I always like to hear the good news first, so we’ll start with the showerings of praise.  The first is from one of the few mainstream UK papers to pay regular attention to SF&F, none other than The Guardian:

“The Heroes is an indictment of war and the duplicity that corrupts men striving for total power: bloody and violent, but never gratuitously so, it’s imbued with cutting humour, acute characterisation and world-weary wisdom about the weaknesses of the human race. Brilliant.”

Next, a FIVE STAR review from the redoubtable Dave Bradley at the worlds foremost SFnal publication, SFX:

“Delivered in Abercrombie’s trademark witty style … This is an action-packed novel full of brutality, black humour and razor-sharp characterisation.”

Yes, FIVE STARS.  MAXIMUM POINTS.  BEST POSSIBLE.  Next, opinon from none other than Stargate supremo and keen observer of the SF&F literary scene, Joe Mallozzi:

“I was fortunate enough to receive an advance copy of Joe Abercrombie’s latest foray into nihilistic fantasy and, damn is it great … Epic in scope yet delightfully detailed in its tracking of the various players involved, it delivers what we’ve come to expect from Abercrombie: dark humor, multi-faceted characters, blood and battle.”

Next up, Romantic Times, or RT as they appear to have become known:

“It’s full of violence, raw language, morally complicated characters and a constantly shifting POV.  Well written and stocked with fully realised characters.”

Then, John Ottinger at Grasping for the Wind:

“The lovechild of The Killer Angels and Conan the Barbarian, Joe Abercrombie’s newest stand-alone novel, The Heroes is more of the same gritty, violent, tragicomedy that has propelled Abercrombie to the top of many fan-favorite lists … Abercrombie, simply put, has done it again. Though there is some repetition of theme and characterization, the work itself is marvelous. I simply could not stop reading it … This has been my favorite read of the past year and I cannot recommend The Heroes highly enough.”

Now, alas, we must turn to the negative reviews:

Did you spot them?  No.  There aren’t any.  I wonder why that is?  Maybe it’s because the book is frakking ace.  I don’t know.  I’m just guessing.  It wouldn’t be like me to mention in passing that you can preorder it from those lovely people at amazon or waterstones, for 50% off.  Oh, hold on, I just did.

Posted in reviews by Joe Abercrombie on January 8th, 2011.

26 comments so far

  • PinkInk says:

    Thanks for the anonymus tip! Still, I’m kind of confused, should we buy the thing? and if so, where? Just so much options!
    (Besides, is there any word on a German version?????)

    Let us all praise the glorious Arrival of something called the Heroes!

  • DrGonzo says:

    Great news. My version will hopefully arrive here in time.

    @PinkInk: I think it will be pretty sure that we will get a german version. As I know they sell pretty well here (even with this crappy german titles ;o) ) so I would expect a translation, but I am not sure how long that will take. If possible I would stick to the enslish version.

  • Eddwigg says:

    Did I hear a trumpet being blown. I just hope it lives upto all this hype or could it be another Phantom Menace…. shudder…. Good job I loved your first four books Joe.

  • Derek says:

    A couple of reviews up on , one by a Terry Pratchet fan and the other by some guy who said “Doesn’t quite do it for me, I’m afraid”….miserable bugger.
    C’mon Amazon get my book shipped.

  • Sir Kenneth says:

    Already pre-ordered from!

  • Mike says:

    Sorry, did I miss something here? Is there a new book coming out? Wow, I did not see that coming. Glad you dropped the hint, Joe, I would have felt really stupid otherwise… Sounds like it could be quite good according to those reviews so I might give it a go.

  • KingChaos says:

    I prefer the original, in translation there is always loss in meaning, humor (especially Joe’s works!), rythm etc., btw I’ve had a look at the German versions, they … well … Shivers has been named “Espe”, which means “aspen”, because of the German saying (“zittern wie Espenlaub”) “tremble like aspen leaf” – there is no trace of menace in the translated name, take Shivers’ cameo in the preview chapter of “the heroes” and a German reader will get the leafs instead of the shivers…

  • daft-sod says:

    Say one thing about the British, say they know how to sell books. In Germany there is a thing called “Buchpreisbindung” which does’t allow for “buy 2 get one free” kind of deals. I preordered yesterday for full price. Never felt so right to pay full price…

  • Bryce says:

    As is my habit, I will reread the novels of any series when the next installment comes out. Its amazing how quickly reading a book for the second time is, perhaps skimming parts that were not as engaging as others. I’m just wondering if I will do this will The Heroes, I did it before BSC and really enjoyed the first law series again. it does seem ages since BSC came out.

  • Joe Abercrombie says:

    German version, “Heldenklingen”, is slated for August according to

  • Mark C says:

    It seems like an age since I ordered The Heroes and its nearly here!

    Well done on the reviews, Joe. Must come as a HUGE relief to see all that effort being well received!

  • Nick Sharps says:

    The excitement is palpable!

  • Jotaro says:

    August for the German version? Thats a long time =(.
    Maybe I will try the english version…. but I fear to miss some of the great descriptions, due to my foreign English =(.

    Anyways, I’m so glad that there is another book in the world of “The First Law”, even if the german titels aren’t that great!

  • Joris says:

    Horrible, horrible, Dutch stores cannot read calendars. Joe’s marketing crescendo is wasted on us. The good news for me is I picked up The Heroes today.

  • Troy says:

    I know this is a tad bit off topic but it looks like i have finally been shipped the Subterranean Press’s limited edition of The Blade Itself!!!!! Just received the tracking info! What a grand month indeed :0D

  • JonathanL says:

    You’re either singing to the choir or preaching to the converted, but it’s still exciting to see such positive reviews for the book. Looking forward to it!

  • Jeff says:

    I’m in the US, but I’ve pre-ordered from (mostly for the better cover).

    I’ve also changed my Xbox Live gamertag to ‘Curnden Craw’ in preperation. Seriously. I needed a new one and, well, there it was.

  • The Grumpy Buddha says:

    Re the first Amazon review:

    “The writing makes you feel the clang of metal and the squelch of mud…”

    I was kinda hoping more for the opposite.

  • No Negative Reviews! CONGRATS! That is amazing work. Can’t wait to get my hands on this one. 🙂

    Best of luck on release day!

  • JohnG says:

    Mr. Abercrombie. Huge fan here in Az. Question for you if you have a minute when will the paperback edition come out for The Heroes? No doubt I will buy the Hardcover either way but just wondering…

  • MattNY says:

    The paperback version will be triple the price of the hardcover, so you had best get out and buy the hardcover upon its release.

    It also is receiving a very exclusive, limited release, so if your bookstore is lucky enough to get a stack of them in stock, buy them all without a second thought. Your great grandchildren will thank you someday.

  • Mcnulty says:

    “Though there is some repetition of theme and characterization, the work itself is marvelous.”

    Ottinger sorta slipped in a half-hearted negative, Joe!

  • Jason says:

    Curse you joe, just as i was starting to make a good headway into my ‘to be read pile’ you release another book. which inevitably means ill go and buy it straight away, and then end up buying even more books because im in a book store (to be read after the heroes, obviously).

  • Jon says:

    sweet. can’t wait. excitement.

  • JohnG says:

    dont see how the paperback would be triple the price… Also i was asking Mr. Abercrombie not yours truly.

  • PaulH says:

    I can’t see a kindle edition for – there seems to be one for – is this intentional, will there be a UK kindle edition at release?

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