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Summary

Second in the age of Madness trilogy, The Trouble with Peace is the next instalment of a series which is revolutionising fantasy....

Conspiracy. Betrayal. Rebellion.

Peace is just another kind of battlefield....

Savine dan Glokta, once Adua's most powerful investor, finds her judgement, fortune and reputation in tatters. But she still has all her ambitions, and no scruple will be permitted to stand in her way.

For heroes like Leo dan Brock and Stour Nightfall, only happy with swords drawn, peace is an ordeal to end as soon as possible. But grievances must be nursed, power seized and allies gathered first, while Rikke must master the power of the Long Eye...before it kills her.

Unrest worms into every layer of society. The Breakers still lurk in the shadows, plotting to free the common man from his shackles, while noblemen bicker for their own advantage. Orso struggles to find a safe path through the maze of knives that is politics, only for his enemies, and his debts, to multiply. 

The old ways are swept aside, and the old leaders with them, but those who would seize the reins of power will find no alliance, no friendship, and no peace, lasts forever.

©2020 Joe Abercrombie (P)2020 Orion Publishing Group

Critic reviews

"Joe Abercrombie is doing some terrific work." (George R. R. Martin)

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Exceptional

Taken as a whole, the First Law canon is a remarkable achievement. I usually rave about Pacey's peerless narration, and that's still extraordinary, but it's more than that. Abercrombie is a master. Every sentence sings with craft, cleverness and wit. It reignites the wonder and delight of youthful reading. This man was born to write. Now, with a body of lore to draw upon, he is able to add layers and textures that, in many ways, surpass Tolkien and Martin. A standard fantasy trope is to build worlds against the historical backdrop of quasi-legendary eras. Tolkien, the First and Second Ages; Martin, the Age of Heroes. Abercrombie does this too. But his decision to progress his world, to dynastically develop, enfeeble and replace his characters, means that we, the readers, are able to watch the Ages unfold with unique intimacy, to enjoy the frisson of recognition as new characters refer to those long dead, often inaccurately, and to experience the kind of dramatic irony that only comes with years of intricate world building. Quite how this guy manages to critique our own world, its economic systems, its modes of morality, its political structures, whilst at the same time making us weep at the tragedy of human interactions, and laugh out loud at antics related to bodily fluids, is a deep mystery. For an exceptionally long novel (you're getting big bang for your buck) Abercrombie's structure and pacing is now flawless. I couldn't stop listening. Yet I didn't want it to end. Not ever. This is the best there is in the genre.

37 people found this helpful

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Brilliant!

Joe Abercrombie is one of my favourite authors and more so after this book! Amazing stuff! This book has twists and turns that are constantly gripping and the humour made me chuckle out loud. Wonderful and loathsome characters a plenty to love and to hate, and none ever just black and white. Steven Pacey is a treat to listen to as always! Only downside is, what will I listen to now that won’t seem bland in comparison?!

5 people found this helpful

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Awesome Stuff

Abercrombie is Amazing as usual, you can expect the unexpected in this book. Lots of betrayals, twists and dark humor. Steven Pacey is a top notch narrator and in fine form yet again

4 people found this helpful

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Joe is a genius

Best narrator alive, great book in a new world with plenty of enjoyable moments and a well crafted plot.

3 people found this helpful

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Another instant classic

Abercrombie does it again with all those political and military twists and turns! Absolute must-listen with the godlike Steven Pacey returning to narrate. Can't wait for the next one already.

2 people found this helpful

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By the Dead

Without a doubt the best installment of the First Law books so far, great story, great performance (Steven Lacey dose sound like he's channeling Jason Statham for one character)

2 people found this helpful

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Wow. You really need this book in your life.

It's worth the purchase. Great Characters Great Plot Very Clever Some of Abercrombie's best writing.

2 people found this helpful

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Perfect

A perfectly written book read by a true master! Speechless with admiration for them both !

2 people found this helpful

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A Phenomenal Author and another Great Novel

What I love about Joe Abercrombie is that he can have your personal allegiance to a character flip and twist multiple times as he weaves his tales. There are others who build lore and forshadow amd enritch their worlds more deftly than he, this is true, but his character work really is second to none. It's blistering with nuance humour and a merciless view of humanity that is, probably, quite sadly, more true tham false. At least in where the persuit of power is concerned. If your thinking... "well this sounds like a review of any one of his books"...then... your right, but then again... its always nice to be consistently and remorselessly brilliant than forgettable.

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Joe and Pacey... the dream team!

Joe Abercrombie has the ability to write characters that I just love and Steven Pacey gives them to life.. it really is a dream team! The story is nicely paced, with some nice twists, that even if you’ve seen them coming, you’re still looking forward to them and the ones you didn’t are even better! I would put Joe Abercrombie in my top 3 writers and this book has certainly helped keep him there! One thing I love about the characters, is even the ones that self doubt, or are struggling with guilt (for whatever reason!), he never writes them whiny! I get so board of whining guilt fests that some authors think help builds a characters depth, Joe gets on with it. Humour is just the right amount (a number of laughs were had!) and the descriptions of battles, bring the pain and horror to life, without feeling melancholy. Either way I was very happy!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Victor
  • 29-12-20

A masterpiece in every aspect

I have read all previous books in the same universe and I keep finishing them completely blown away and amazed. This is so good, I believe I might have ruined myself by putting the bar this high for any book I'll read in the future.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Marco Selmo
  • 16-12-20

Amazing book, a masterpiece of Grim-dark.

Totally recommend to fans of Grim-dark and of Joe Abercrombie's work. Stephen Pacey's narration Is stellar, as always. Kinda sad I have to wait for Wisdom of Crowds.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-09-20

Can’t wait for the next one

The combination of Abercrombie story’s and Steven Pacey masterful reading is always an delight and this book was no exeption. I am always amazed how may well crafted sentences, that in there own could become a saying, Abercrombie can fit in one book and all these colourful characters where almost no one is truly good or bad, hero or coward, everyone is just trying to survive what the world has dealt them, makes these books such an interesting and fun read. There are no sides to take, love them all. The only thing I miss is not being able to get a glimpse of my all time favourite character, the Bloody Nine, but you must be realistic....

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  • Craig Harry
  • 16-11-20

Wonderful tale, masterly narrated!

More of the same rich storytelling from Joe Abercrombie! The wonderful characters are brought to life once again by the amazing Steven Pacey. Can’t wait for the next book!

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  • Tapio
  • 15-10-20

Cant wait for the next one

Joe abercrombie returns victoriously To the land of the first law. I enjoyed this book immensly, but rather oddly the book is not as melancholy as the books of the first law scene have been so far. Anyways really good performance and writing In this one.

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  • luke
  • 14-10-20

MUCH better than the first one..

This is a proper return to form for Joe. It is rare for an author at this career stage. Well done!! Steven Pacey is fantastic as usual. He might be even better than usual in this one. For fans of Joe's First Law series, you will not be disappointed; you might even be pleasantly surprised. YOU WILL NOT regret a credit for this... I would have paid full price for this one.

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  • Jeremy O'carroll
  • 13-10-20

Beautifully Crafted. Hilarious.

Steven Pacey is the best audio narrator in the business, and he perfectly complements Abercrombie’s dark humour. The Trouble with War is delightfully entertaining, with each sentence perfectly crafted to have you laughing out loud. One of the funniest books I’ve ‘read’ in a long time.

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  • Daniel Smith
  • 12-10-20

outstanding book, encore performance

Joe Abercrombie writes an amazing book. and Steven Pacey hits it out of the park, on the reading. These are the most pleasurable listening experiences I have had. top work everyone.

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  • Tobias
  • 11-10-20

His best yet

It gives optimism that the sixth (seventh) one feels like the most successful overall, in terms of structure, buildup, drawing upon the previous threads. Books before have certainly had fun and thrills but there feels like a consistency of pace that hadn’t quite been as thoroughly maintained throughout the book as done here. Or it’s recency bias, but I’m certainly satisfied.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 24-09-20

you get what you want from this

Haven't laughed this hard at other peoples misery since i read a little hatred. Perfection