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The Trouble with Peace (The Age of Madness, 2) Paperback – July 27, 2021
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"Abercrombie's satisfying plotting and expert subversion of genre expectations are sure to please. Readers will be gripped."―Publishers Weekly
"Abercrombie squeezes your heart till it matches his beat. No one writes with the seismic scope or primal intensity of Joe Abercrombie."―Pierce Brown, #1 New York Times bestselling author, on A Little Hatred
"Abercrombie continues to do what he does best . . . Buckle your seat belts for this one . . . . A vivid and jolting tale."―Robin Hobb, New York Times bestselling author, on A Little Hatred
"Highly recommended - a funny, finely-wrought, terrifically energetic work of high fantasy. Seek it out."―Joe Hill on A Little Hatred
"Say one thing for Joe Abercrombie, say that he's a master of his craft."―Forbes on A Little Hatred
"A Little Hatred is Abercrombie at his very best: witty, wise, and whip-smart. Masterfully plotted . . . . I had high hopes for this book, and it exceed them all."―Nicholas Eames, author of Kings of the Wyld, on A Little Hatred
"Brutal, unforgiving, and terribly fun. Everything awesome readers have come to expect from Joe Abercrombie."―Brian McClellan, author of Sins of Empire, on A Little Hatred
"With expert craft, Abercrombie lays the groundwork for another thrilling trilogy."―Publishers Weekly (starred review) on A Little Hatred
"Rife with emotion with wit to spare, both honed to an effortlessly fine edge. A Little Hatred is the joy of watching a master of the craft with his tools at their sharpest."―Sam Sykes, author of Seven Blades in Black, on A Little Hatred
About the Author
- Publisher : Orbit (July 27, 2021)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 544 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0316187194
- ISBN-13 : 978-0316187190
- Item Weight : 1 pounds
- Best Sellers Rank: #317,370 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Those returning after A Little Hatred know that all is not well in the Union. Years of avarice and corruption, ambition and negligence, have resulted in a ticking time-bomb of a nation, and it's ready to blow. Around a hundred pages into The Trouble with Peace I had to smile, because I felt it. That hook in me, expertly laid as usual. That hook dragging me along in Joe's wake. His prose flowing, his dialogue sharp, his plots finely woven, and his world vibrantly alive as he shows me around once more. The thing is that anyone who has made it this far into the First Law series--and for those counting this is number nine, if you count Sharp Ends--we are no longer surprised as to what Joe is. He writes some of the most compelling, realistic characters out there and displays a total mastery of cinematic POV. And if it seems like I'm being too generous with my praise I can do nothing but apologize, in my mind he deserves it.
When you can write this many books set in the same world and not just maintain quality but somehow continue to improve, then you deserve the praise. Maybe Joe is not treading entirely new ground here, but that doesn't make it any less impressive, or any easier to put down. He is leading us through a fully realized world, through matters of consequence. Forcing us into situations of ambiguity with high stakes, dragging us along kicking and screaming into an age of madness where chaos reigns. But there are always those who stand to benefit from a little chaos... And besides, in such a tumultuous time in our own world, the Age of Madness seems more relevant than ever.
The Trouble with Peace by Joe Abercrombie continues the Age of Madness Trilogy well. The action builds and plot shifts land hard. Most chapters follow either a single viewpoint or two sequential viewpoints of the seven main characters The exceptions are the chapter titled The Little People where a series of people react to a devastating event in Adua and a chapter also titled The Little People where a series of people react to the climactic battle in Stoffenbeck. In Stoffenbeck one character observes, then encounters the next character, and then that character takes on the narrative. It continues in the chapter, creating a kaleidoscope where the events build to a greater whole. Those chapters were my highlight of the book.
It was a brilliant book. I liked the love triangle arc of Leo, Savine, and Orso. I’m looking forward to seeing their struggles to conclude in the last book of the trilogy, The Wisdom of Crowds, coming on September 16, 2021.
Joe rekindled my love for fantasy with The Blade Itself, and some of you might know that he is no small inspiration to my own writing. He’s on autobuy, and I’d been looking forward to this sequel for some time.
First, I want to recognize Joe for writing a summary of A Little Hatred. People need that these days, and it is a huge service. Helps that his summary was so well written. I felt almost entirely caught up.
Second, Joe continues to excel at characterization. The POVs were each distinctly fantastic. Orso had some serious growth in this book, just like his (true) father had in the first series. There are clear parallels. Savine was my favorite. Smart, cocky, and impossibly savvy, she feels so very real. Joe excels in the political intrigue, and I really appreciate how all sides of the conflict seemed to have motivations that went beyond just good versus evil. As before, I don't care for the "everyone knows about Bayaz, and his evil manipulations" take; it seems to take some of the mystery out of the environment.
Battles continue to be visceral, chaotic affairs, and I love how close to the action you feel. The theme that “war is horrible, why do we do it when little is accomplished” stands out as always. It’s helped by the new industrial setting, which really lays on the grimdark. It’s not quite as pollution heavy as before, but the theme of worker’s rights is interwoven without being over the top.
Did I mention I love Savine?
Anyhow, do yourself a favor and read this damned series, assuming you’ve lived life to its fullest and always read all other Abercrombie books.
Top reviews from other countries
The trouble with peace avoids the dreaded sophomore slump and instead kicks the age of madness into high gear, for those who felt that A little hatred, book one, lacked action then this book makes up for it especially in its final quarter. The characters are glorious, the morals are murky and while things are technically bleak verging on soul destroying there’s Abercrombie’s trade mark pitch black humour to ease the way through.
I love this series both because it’s perhaps it’s his most accessible work outside his original trilogy and because it’s also a treasure trove of Easter eggs and hints for long time readers I called the first book Discworld for bastards a dark mirror to the kind of optimistic humanist fantasy that Sir Terry Prattchett used to write and The Trouble with Peace only cements my opinion in that regards.
The best part of this series is long time readers get to try to read between the lines and take guesses to what is going on , to come up theories and then see if there are right either way knowing Abercrombie I don’t expect to be disappointed. Roll on book three.
How he weaves so many threads of such a satisfying narrative, spread all over the circle of the world, is beyond me.
His prose are on another level. I don’t normally bookmark a page for a great paragraph but I did for this (No spoilers): “They say belief is righteous, but to Muslan only doubt was devine. From doubt flows curiosity, and knowledge, and progress. From belief flows only ignorance and decay.”
Just amazing. So annoyed I have to wait for the next instalment, but it’s a small price to pay for excellence.
If you gave this less than 5 stars, reevaluate your life choices.
Keep up the good work Joe.
Fans of Joe Abercrombie will be used to him playing fast and loose with the laws of the genre, and this book is no exception. Some readers haven't enjoyed the move to a more Industrial society in The Age of Madness trilogy, but really it's refreshing to read a fantasy book inspired by early industrial England that doesn't fall into eye-rollingly terrible steampunk.
This book leans back from the industrial setting, but the tensions caused by a society in the grips of technology induced change underpin the main conflicts of the book. The main plot follows another, different type from rebellion from A Little Hatred. I found the motivations of the main rebel to be unconvincing at first, but the characterisation is done so well, that in the end I came round.
The "old" characters from the first law trilogy barely make an appearance, which to be honest, I felt glad about as they felt like they were holding back progress in some regards for the new characters (there are some hints they may return).
Overall I really enjoyed reading it once it got rolling with the main narrative and leading up to the climax I really could not guess what would happen, but enjoyed every minute of it.
There are so very many well written characters who either win your sympathy or can be truly despised (and they are all listed right at the very end of the book).
The plot is first rate and fortunately had exactly the outcome I hoped although I feared it would not.
The humour is gentle, self deprecating and a joy.
However be prepared for a hard read in parts as this book sets out the futility of war in such a compelling way I sometimes needed to stop and composing myself for the next bout of brutality before continuing.
Quite simply a modern masterpiece.