E-Book, 520 Pages
Adult/ Grimdark Fantasy
By: Joe Abercrombie
“If the Great Change taught us anything, it is that the vast majority of us are cowards the vast majority of the time.”
The Blade Itself ★★★ 3/4
Before They Are Hanged ★★★★
The Last Argument of King ★★★★
Best Served Cold ★★★★ 1/2
The Heroes ★★★
Red Country ★★★ 1/2
Sharp Ends ★★ 1/2
A Little Hatred ★★★★
The Trouble with Peace ★★★★ 1/4
The Wisdom of Crowds ★★★★★
I need to clear a few things before getting into the actual review of the book. I only finished the first law original trilogy last year and this year I tackled the rest of the books. I had it planned so that by the time this book is released, I would have read everything and I think the plan was a major success for me. I always had a good feeling about this series and looks like I was right. I also should mention that I sometimes speed through books which may affect the comprehension (less so with contemporaries but it happens with dense fantasy stories) and that was the case with The Trouble with Peace. I decided to read the two summaries Abercrombie provided on his website which were life saving and I am 100% I would not have enjoyed the story this much without them (Honestly more authors should be doing this because it will have a huge impact on ratings and sales). Reading those summaries made me pump my rating of book two because I did miss a few things when I read it. I also used a map I saw on twitter which was fan made and it also really helped me as a visual person. I read The Wisdom of Crowds slowly and steadily and it really paid off!
The story takes place after the shocking events at the ending of book two and it is all about “The Great Change”. I think the beginning was like a psychological study of communities and how they are affected by change which was amusing and hilarious at the same time.
“Before we can feed the people’s bellies,” agreed Risinau, “we must feed the people’s minds. Only with a government founded on sound principles of fairness and justice can they prosper!”
The writing is Abercrombie at his best, earlier this year I said that Best Served Cold is my favorite book by the author and I thought it would not be changing anytime soon but this book proved me wrong and took the crown (pun intended). The writing is just brilliant because it involves multiple POVs but they are well balanced and it was interesting from start to finish. There were a ton of quotes that I liked and highlighted, I always said that Abercombie is a master of dialogue and this was not an exception to this rule. This book gave me all kinds of emotions and I know it takes real skill to evoke my emotions.
The characters were all great! I did not think that I will love them this much but I did care about the main characters: Savine, Orso, Leo and Rikke are all memorable and precious characters to me now. Glokta is still my favorite character in this world but those characters are next to him on the ladder. The characters in this book are unpredictable and are all traitors and serve their own goods. I don’t know if there was any character that I can consider pure and good but that’s what makes this very fresh and intriguing and it also what makes Abercrombie deserve the title Lord Grimdark!
“Well, at least one of us has something long.” She started forwards and jabbed her little finger in his face. “Guess we know why they call you the Nail now!”
I always mentioned that plot in The First Law world is slow and relatively less good than the characters and prose. I can say that the plot in this series was excellent and in this book specifically it was mind-boggling. It was really hard to predict and things kept happening left and right and the little details are what makes this perfect!
The world building is not very different from the previous books but it is the Great Change book and everything was involved in this and it was fascinating to see how the world itself is affected by this.
“You let one sheep pick its own path,” said Isern, “and ’fore you know it the whole herd’s got opinions.”
Summary: Books like this are the reason I am not generous with 5 stars because books need to be almost perfect to deserve those and The Wisdom of Crowds is one of those books. An interesting story from start to finish, great prose that is eloquent yet funny. Characters that you love and hate at the same time and a story line that is so well thought of. This is going into my favorites shelf too and will definitely be in my top 5 reads of this year!!