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Red Country

Narrated by: Steven Pacey
Series: First Law World, Book 3
Length: 19 hrs and 52 mins
4.8 out of 5 stars (2,459 ratings)

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Summary

Shy South comes home to her farm to find a blackened shell; her brother and sister have been stolen and she's going to have to return to her bad old ways if she's ever going to see them again. She sets off in grim pursuit with only her cowardly old step-father Lamb for company. But it turns out he's hiding a bloody past of his own. None bloodier.

Their journey will take them across the lawless plains, to a frontier town gripped by gold fever, through feuds, duels and massacres, and high into unmapped mountains to a reckoning with ancient enemies, and force them into alliance with Nicomo Cosca, infamous soldier of fortune...and a man no one should ever have to trust…

Steven Pacey is best known for his role as Del Tarrant in the third and fourth seasons of the sci-fi series Blake's 7.

He has worked extensively in Theatre, TV and film for many years and in 2009 played opposite Graham Norton in La Cage Aux Folles at London's Playhouse Theatre. He has read numerous audiobooks including Joe Abercrombie's First Law Trilogy, Best Served Cold and The Heroes, and abridged titles by Matthew Reilly.

©2012 Joe Abercrombie (P)2012 Orion Publishing Group

What listeners say about Red Country

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Old friends and enemies

I am a huge fan of Joe Abercrombie. Critics will tend to ignore him because he works within the fantasy genre but there is real genius here. The depth, breadth and sophistication of his characters are startling.

Red Country is perhaps Abercrombie's weakest work but still manages to be one of the best books I've ever read. He is that good.



Steven Pacey's narration, once again, takes the excellent source material to a higher level. He is the best narrator around. Each of the characters is distinctive; the pace is perfect and the timing superb. This is not a reading, more a one man radio play.



That the Abercrombie - Pacey combination haven't won an audiobook award is a total traversty.

21 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Gritty, Graphic and Darkly Funny

Red Country was one of my most eagerly awaited books for a while and it does not dissapoint. Set some time after The Heroes it is a brilliant mix of old and new characters venturing into a new land of opportunity. However, remembering what great pleasure Mr Abercrombie takes in giving his characters a rough time you can take it as red (sorry!) that things do not run smoothly. The plot is gripping and the beautifully described environment will have you wiping dust out of your eyes.



As ever Steven Paceys narration is glorious, bringing already solid characters to life.



The only thing I would say is if you are new to Joe Abercrombies work I would advise you go back to the beginning and start with the First Law Trilogy - you will be glad you did!!



More please!!!!

14 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

Another Abercrombie Masterpiece

Okay... there is a lot of violence. But there's also a lot of story, humour, great characters and a fantastic world. This book is part of the same universe made up of the First Law trilogy, Best Served Cold and The Heroes (with many of the same characters). I confess I've avoided The Heroes as the write ups all seem to focus on endless battle. I should probably read it however - as all of the others are absolutely fantastic. If you want to spend some time in a convincing and fantastical other world - these are the stories for you.

Amplifying their effect is Steven Pacey. The best performer for these books (and available across all of them) - he reads effortlessly and (to my mind) perfectly. Accents, timing, consistency - all done brilliantly.

If you've not listened to the First Law Trilogy - I strongly recommend you do - and first. You will not regret it (and I am extremely jealous if you've not listened to them...)

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent..

After not liking "The Heroes" I am very glad to be to loving this book :) Lots of new characters and the odd one or two we may have met before. If you have not listened to the the first law trilogy, this book is very good and stands fine alone without knowing the past history, it would even be a good starting point and treating the trilogy as a prequel would be very entertaining. If you have listened to the others you will be very happy with this book and I recommend you download it.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Bloody funny

I am in awe of Joe Abercrombie, he writes stories that are visceral, filthy, grim, philosophical and funny, balancing high and low fantasy (mostly low in this case) on the fulcrum of a gripping narrative. And the bodycount is astounding.



You might be better off starting with the First Law Trilogy (as the resonances here will make you smile) but Red Country is a fine stand alone tale. It channels the spirit of the Wild West, but never feels like a clash of genre's, more as if you have wandered off the edge of the map of his previous fantasy world and are blundering around in the Far Country. For that skilful mix alone this is worth a read, I've never seen anyone do it better.



Narration by Steven Pacey is excellent again, capturing just the right levels of weight and levity.



The new characters are interesting, well-rounded and sometimes even survive. Abercrombie is building up quite the cast list. But the old characters are always welcome, and two in particular will have you laughing and grimacing in turn.



So a welcome addition to the canon and well worth a five-star rating. Recommended!

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant novel brought to life by great narration

Joe Abercrombie creates another fantastic set of engaging characters that are taken to the limit physically and (more interestingly) morally. Abercrombie's characters have never been black and white but in this novel the line is blurrier than ever.



The narration by Pacey gives further life to the already colourful characters (a new contender for all time favourite fictional character is a certain mercenary captain who makes an excellent re-appearance in this book).



I finished this absurdly quickly in a couple of staggeringly unproductive days.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

The Genius of Abercrombie continues

Once again Joe Abercrombie entertains with a cavalcade of brilliant characters. While these stories are categorised as Fantasy, they could sit within the realms of any great fiction genre.

Some great old characters and some enticing new ones invite you to follow them on a journey so exciting that it makes the reader hope it wont end. If you liked his previous books you will love this one. The best read of the year, bewitched from start to finish. The only downside is that I have to wait for the publication of his next one.

4 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

The country will run red

The book:



Fans of Abercrombie's previous works will feel right at home with Red Country. This is the last of the stand alone books before another trilogy and is a good read. It's full of the violence, tension and dark humour you would expect from the author of The Heroes and Best Served Cold.



However to be honest, it's probably the weakest of the books. For me, the story line didn't flow as well as it could have and the pacing was a little off in place. It seemed that this book was setting up events that will happen further down the line. More of a prelude to the next trilogy rather than a story in its own right.



There also seemed to be an over use of previous characters from the other books and while it is a nice nod to fans of the series; it did seem forced.That said, there are some excellent new characters introduced (Temple being one of the best character I've seen in a long while). The new setting of the near and far country was also a joy to discover.



The Narration: Steven Pacey delivers another fantastic performance, he matches the tone of the book perfectly. I can't fault it at all.



7 people found this helpful

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  • El
  • 05-01-19

great book

I just love this series and I loved this book. that's it. And pacey is an amazing narrator.

2 people found this helpful

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My favourite character's back!

Yay! Logen's back!!!

I thoroughly enjoyed the First Law trilogy, and although Best Served Cold was equally good, I was a little disappointed by Heroes (just a personal taste thing, as I know other reviewers have raved about it) - but for me, Red Country was a return to the earlier style/ story, which I so enjoyed. Admittedly, I might be slightly biased because old Logen is back, and he's been my favourite character since the beginning, however there are some great new characters in this instalment too - most notably, Temple!

As always, Abercrombie's characters are well developed and all unique, and his story telling is gritty and engaging. A great bit of entertainment.
Steven Pacey's narration is, as usual, flawless.

If you're new to the series, treat yourself by starting at the beginning with the Blade (First Law Trilogy), and be entertained through all 6 books. It never gets "samey" - well worth each and every credit used on these books.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Raphael
  • 07-11-12

A pleasant read

Did not expect to see another book by Joe Abercrombie so soon after The Heroes and was pleasantly surprised to stumble upon it by chance. As others have noted, Steven Pacey is a remarkable narrator and would make a mediocre story sound superb. So much the better when the story is a decent one.

There are many parallels in Red Country to the colonization of the Americas, which adds an interesting tone to the story and at least for me, makes it easier to picture the world around the main characters. Storytelling is quite good, albeit the pacing is a little slow, events less grandiose and I would have, personally, enjoyed seeing more tie-ins into the previous books. I'm now more hopeful about hearing more about the fates of many of the old characters, though. There is a long time span between The last argument of kings and Red country along with plenty of characters and events to expand upon, so maybe we shall see another book detailing that time period more closely from the perspective of characters we haven't heard of for a long time.

Only gave the story four stars, because it doesn't quite stand up to the first law trilogy. You just have to be realistic about these things. ;)

5 people found this helpful

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  • panagiotis
  • 10-11-12

Do not read the review of Luke from Japan

Thank god Luke I read your review after finishing the book. I can't understand why did you include such a spoiler without an alert dude. I would report you, but after voting negatively the button disappeared.
Very good book guys. If you aren't familiar with Mr. Abercrombie's books you should start with the first law trilogy, and after that continue with Best served cold, The heroes and finally Red country.

4 people found this helpful

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  • David Petty
  • 05-04-19

My favorite character

I tend not to read books more than once. I’ve read this one twice and now listened to it as well. The Bloody Nine is my favorite literary character. I have now realise that when listening to a book the characters come over according to the emphasis given to them be the narrator, so my experience has been quite different as a result, which I’m still adjusting to. So with that in mind there was only one aspect that niggled me: the narrator when saying the word “grimaced” repeatedly pronounced it as “ghri-maced” as opposed to the only way I’ve ever heard it pronounced, which is “ghri-mussed”. Otherwise I quite enjoyed the experience.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Daniel Smith
  • 25-05-20

perfection?

these books, read by this guy... my best audio book experience to date. I don't know if it's perfection... but it's the closest I've found. usually I would do something, be driving or gardening or whatever when listening to audio books. but these ones. sometimes I will just sit, close my eyes and listen.

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  • Torbjörn Näsmark
  • 10-07-19

Excellent performance by Steven Pacey.

Another excellent performance by Steven Pacey. Although this is probably my least favorite book in the first law world (not sure why really, it just is), the standard is ser very high.

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  • Michael
  • 27-11-18

save the best for last

read this one last. very enjoyable! well read. well written. sad that its finished. a good old cowboy book :)

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-10-18

Best one yet!

Besides the first law trilogy this is without a doubt the best of the books. Glad to hear more about Ninefingers and Cosca, some of my favorites from the first law books. Highly recommend it!

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-07-18

Best yet!

I loved the first three of the First Law books, then I felt Best Served Cold and Heroes didn't quite reach those heights, but then I listened to Red Country. This was my favorite of them all.

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  • Olavi Saarikoski
  • 20-02-18

Western fantasy - Unforgettable adventure

Whoa, yippiaiyee! At first I wasn't sure if Joe had taken a good turn going this way West with the series. Then I forgot about thinking and could only listen, spellbound as the miles went by and the prairies changed little, like humanity in these series. Joe Abercrombie tackles the big questions of life with little everyday situations and very human characters. One of the best book series I've read/listened, definitely! Thank you!

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 12-09-17

Good stuff

Listened the first law series and extra books based on the world created in them and have to say I enjoyed them all. Have to be realistic - the series was the better part and these additional books don't quite get to the same level.