HALF THE WORLD

PrintE-mail Written by Ed Fortune

BOOK REVIEW: HALF THE WORLD / AUTHOR: JOE ABERCROMBIE / PUBLISHER: GOLLANCZ / RELEASE DATE: FEBRUARY 12TH

Half the World is the second book in Joe Abercrombie’s young adult series, The Shattered Sea. The previous novel, Half a King, told the tale of a young prince who became a slave and fought to find his place in the world. This latest instalment picks up from the events of the last book, and though it features much of the cast from book one, it focuses on two new characters; the slow yet noble Brand and the violent yet determined Thorn Bhatu.

The Shattered Sea books are set in a fantasy world in which elves and magic are long gone, lost to some poorly understood calamity, and focuses on the inhabitants of Gettland, a Viking-like civilisation attempting to fend off the political machinations of its allies whilst keeping a wary eye on its Gaul-like neighbours. We are first introduced to the main characters in the training grounds, where the well-intentioned actions of Brand lead to Thorn becoming set up for murder. Things are not easy for Thorn; sexism is part of Gettland’s traditions and this extends to any woman looking to become a warrior. Events conspire to send the two on an epic quest across half the world, under the guidance of the characters from the previous novel.

Abercrombie’s writing is compelling and addictive. Not one to shy away from harsh realities, the author creates a grimy world in which heroes do not win because they have a destiny or any special quality; just hard work, practice and determination. Both Thorn and Brand are sympathetic and engaging characters. Thorn is especially amusing, partially because she has no idea when she’s on to a good thing, but mostly because she has a spectacular capacity for violence and this makes for rather thrilling fight scenes. Brand will appeal to anyone who has ever been shy and lacking in confidence, which is probably everyone.

As always, Joe Abercrombie doesn’t pull his punches, delivering exquisite action on every page. Half the World explores The Shattered Sea setting even further than before, and much like his characters, what seems simple on surface is rich and engaging once you dig into the details. The book works fine as a standalone novel (though it contains spoilers for the previous book) and we look forward to the next instalment.
 

SHARE YOUR COMMENTS BELOW OR ON TWITTER @STARBURST_MAG

Find your local STARBURST stockist HERE, or buy direct from us HERE. For our digital edition (available to read on your iOS, Android, Amazon, Windows 8, Samsung and/or Huawei device - all for just £1.99), visit MAGZTER DIGITAL NEWSSTAND.

CLICK TO BUY!

MORE FROM AROUND THE WEB:



Suggested Articles:
Few could argue that the character of Captain Phasma was severely underused in The Force Awakens. Pr
Now that the critical and commercial disappointment that was this year’s live action version of Gh
There is a swathe of Star Wars books being released at the moment, covering all era’s and topics f
Good News Bible: The Deadline Strips of Shaky Kane is exactly what the title says. The book collects
scroll back to top

Add comment

Security code
Refresh

Other articles in Book Reviews

STAR WARS PHASMA 17 September 2017

GHOST IN THE SHELL 16 September 2017

STAR WARS KIRIGAMI 12 September 2017

GOOD NEWS BIBLE: THE DEADLINE STRIPS OF SHAKY KANE 12 September 2017

MURMURS OF DOUBT 04 September 2017

STAR TREK THE NEXT GENERATION: THE ART OF JUAN ORTIZ 01 September 2017

WYCHWOOD 01 September 2017

STAR WARS VISUAL ENCYCLOPEDIA 01 September 2017

DOCTOR WHO PAPER DOLLS 01 September 2017

ULTIMATE MARVEL 01 September 2017

- Entire Category -

Sign up today!
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner
Banner