The First Law

The First Law

"The First Law" is a fantasy series written by British author Joe Abercrombie. It consists of a trilogy and at least one stand-alone novel set in the same world.

The trilogy is published by Gollancz in the UK and Pyr in the USA. The stand-alone novels remain with Gollancz in the UK but will be published by Orbit Books in the USA [ [ Blog Entry] - 7 August 2008] .

The First Law Trilogy

# "The Blade Itself" (2006)
# "Before They Are Hanged" (2007)
# "Last Argument of Kings" (2008)

tand-alone works

* "Best Served Cold" (forthcoming)


The trilogy is set in an epic fantasy world reminiscent of medieval Europe. There are three major nations involved: the Union, a large island-based kingdom similar to Britain; the Gurkish Empire, which is similar to the large Middle-Eastern empires of antiquity; and the Northmen, a rough alliance of several northern tribes and kingdoms under the leadership of a warrior-king named Bethod. The Union is drawn into war against the latter when the Northmen invade the Union's northern province of Angland, and against the former when the Empire attempts to annex the city of Dagoska.

The trilogy follows the fortunes of three major characters: Inquistor Glokta, an interrogator in the Union's Inquisition; Jezal dan Luthar, a nobleman and swordsman; and Logen Ninefingers, infamous barbarian warrior of the Northlands forced into an uneasy alliance with the Union to defeat his sworn enemy, Bethod. As the trilogy unfolds we learn that our initial views of the characters, who seemingly conform to traditional fantasy stereotypes, are not the full story and further developments in the narrative reveal a great deal of misdirection and subterfuge going on.

The first stand-alone novel will be set in the city-state of Styria three years after the events of the trilogy [ [ Blog Entry] - 13 August 2007] , and will be followed by another stand-alone, possibly set in the Northlands.

The books do not contain maps, as the author prefers not to use them and he was supported in this by his UK publisher, although he does not rule out maps appearing in the future [ [ Blog Entry] - 2 October 2007] .


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