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Sharp Ends

Stories from the World of the First Law
Series: First Law World
Length: 11 hrs and 48 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (1,162 ratings)

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Summary

Read by Steven Pacey, and featuring Joe Abercrombie narrating 'Freedom'. This audio edition also includes an interview with Steven and Joe.

The Union army may be full of bastards, but there's only one who thinks he can save the day singlehanded when the Gurkish come calling: the incomparable Colonel Sand dan Glokta.

Curnden Craw and his dozen are out to recover a mysterious item from beyond the Crinna. Only one small problem: no one seems to know what the item is. Shevedieh, the self-styled best thief in Styria, lurches from disaster to catastrophe alongside her best friend and greatest enemy, Javre, Lioness of Hoskopp. And after years of bloodshed, the idealistic chieftain, Bethod, is desperate to bring peace to the North.

There's only one obstacle left - his own lunatic champion, the most feared man in the North: the Bloody-Nine....

Sharp Ends combines previously published award-winning tales with exclusive new short stories. Violence explodes, treachery abounds and the words are as deadly as the weapons in this rogue's gallery of sideshows, backstories and sharp endings from the world of the First Law.

©2016 Joe Abercrombie (P)2016 Orion Publishing Group

Critic reviews

"Joe Abercrombie is doing some terrific work." (George R. R. Martin)
"Delightfully twisted and evil." ( Guardian)
"Joe Abercrombie is probably the brightest star among the new generation of British fantasy writers...." ( The Times)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Oh it is F**king good stuff!

Shev & Javre, the most enjoyable characters I have come across in a very long time. They deserve their very own series. Laughed out Loud a good few times at their antics. Rest was good also of course and great to meet some old names I knew well, but these two stand out as just fantastic. Love the short story style where you are not sure if any more is coming or not on each story line. Genius :D My book of 2016. Please give Shev & Javre a whole series, they make me smile so much :) Oh..., this is hell.....LOL!!.

12 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

For Abercrombie fans

This jumps around a bit. There's no real story thread, just lots of short stories packed together - the only link being that they are all about minor characters from the First Law series.....

If you're a fan of Abercrombie, and a devotee of the First Law Series, then you'll enjoy this. There's the expected Abercrombie grit, with Steven Pacey narration - you'll know exactly what to expect. 4 stars rather than 5, as I'm not really a fan of the short story approach, and coming to this book cold (outside of the series), is probably not to be recommended.

At one point, Jo Abercrombie himself narrates one of the stories.....He "voice-acts" in a way that is supposed to be consistent with the character in question, and I suppose it is, but have to admit that I couldn't cope with it, and had to forward through that story. Jo is a fabulous storyteller - one of my favourites - but the narration is best left to Steven Pacey, who is without a doubt, one of the best narrators out there.

My favourite part of this audiobook is the footnote.....where Steven Pacey and Jo Abercrombie are being interviewed by the Audiobook people. It was brilliant to listen to the two of them chatting about the books, and the various characters, and interpretations and the performances. (I could have done without the interviewer whose questions were a little lame - rather just letting them chat away, down any path they cared to go.....good fun.).

21 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Humorous, witty, violent.

Humorous, witty, violent.

Joe Abercrombie's books set in the world of the 'First Law' have it all, great characters and storylines brought to life by Steven Pacey, who, in my opinion, is the greatest audiobook narrator in the business.

The combination of Abercrombie's writing and Pacey's narrative always leaves me impatiently waiting for the next Instalment. I have trawled through audibles catalog, hoping to find something that comes close to these, but sadly, nothing quite hits the mark.

8 people found this helpful

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Brilliant!

Any additional comments?

It is a joy to listen to any of Joe Abercrombie's books - I love his style of writing, its mixture of brute force, fierce fighting, webs of love, betrayal and intrigue together with a large dose of humour for good measure. I enjoyed all of the short stories especially those of Shev and Javre which had me laughing out loud many times! Hope to see more of them in the future. Steven Pacey's narration is brilliant as always, bringing all the characters to life. Great book and will definitely be listening to it again.

10 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Brilliant writing

I am not usually a big fan of short stories, but this is something quite different: a filling in of the back-story of some of the characters we all ready know from previous books. At any rate, I thoroughly enjoyed it because the writing is just so good. Amazing characterisations, heart-stopping action and wicked, dry humour. My only slight criticism was that I didn't enjoy the last story, as it seemed to take a well-known character somewhere that was very dark, even by Abercrombie's standards. But that should not put you off at all.

I am a bit cross with Steven Pacey though. I have read all of Abercrombie's previous books in print, but now because Pacey's reading is so awesome I am going to have to go back and buy the Audible versions. You have cost me a fortune Mr Pacey, with your perfect intonation, pace, tone and characterisations!

6 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Fantastic stories, fantastically narrated

I've spent the last week in a state of bliss, with a smile on my face, drinking in the world of The First Law, so amazingly delivered by Steven Pacey. Great collection of stories, brimming with humour, which kept me smirking, and laughing out loud on busy trains; I got odd looks, but I pitied them for not being party to the witty retorts & gags.

5 people found this helpful

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another great entertaining romp

Abercrombie has a knack for making a story 3D, with the characters, dry humour and detailed gore that makes this a gritty wonderful collection. the narration too is superb!

4 people found this helpful

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Excellent as usual

Mr Pacey, sublime performance. Should not have let Joe on the mic. Great writer, but not a great voice.

3 people found this helpful

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great performance more first law please!

great performance. wish it was one long story not a collection of short stories. but still ballin!

3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Disappointed

I love Joe Abercrombie's work. This series has been brilliant with amazing characters and fantastic stories. When I saw this book was being released I preordered immediately. I was so disappointed to find it was a collection of short nothingy stories filling in some pointless details of the earlier books. It kills me to write a negative review because all of the other books were so good. In fairness the book was well read and performed but over all I felt this was a fluff piece that didn't have a real point.

6 people found this helpful

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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-12-19

Should be read last, so things come full circle

It is a very good collection of stories that expends the context of the trilogy and the stand alone books. This is why in my opinion it should be read last. Charachthers are very well build and some familiar faces get another layer of their personality exposed. Comic relief is there, as expected and things fall into place nicely from a narrative perspective. Again should be read last to fully enjoy it (after the first trilogy and the stand alone books).

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-05-18

Kickass short stories

Should have been longer, and more stories about chev and javra to see what happened on the last crusade together. Also really liked the last story where it changed characters rapidly 😀

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  • luke
  • 09-09-16

Not his best work

What did you like best about Sharp Ends? What did you like least?

Joe style ++
The stories --

What was most disappointing about Joe Abercrombie’s story?

He just does not write great short fiction. Not his fault.

Have you listened to any of Steven Pacey and Joe Abercrombie ’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Excellent performance as usual.

Do you think Sharp Ends needs a follow-up book? Why or why not?

NO...

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  • Trace`
  • 27-06-17

So, so good!

It's been awhile since Joe's last book and with all the other books I have read in between, I had forgotten just how much I love his work! Just about everything else pales by comparison. I enjoyed catching up with these characters from previous stories, they feel like old friends.