Last Argument of Kings - Joe Abercrombie Very rarely do I find a series (especially in a trilogy) where the later books actually outshine the first. Last Argument of Kings was so good, however, it kept me riveted the whole way through. Finally, everything the author had set up in the first two novels pays off in this one, making up for the first book which I saw more as an "intro" where not much really happened.

Whereas The Blade Itself was strong in the character development, Last Argument of Kings' forte is the action. Even so, the fast-paced adventure and intrigue does not come at the expense of the characters we've come to know and love (or hate) and it's such a great feeling to be able to enjoy a tale of epic battles and magic and still feel connected to characters that breathe and bleed. And boy, do they bleed! Joe A's books are definitely not for the faint-hearted; there are scenes of torture or war that are so violent and bloody that made even me with my strong stomach cringe.

I wasn't sure if I would like the First Law trilogy when I first started these books, but I'm glad now I stuck with it. They just got better and better.