The Broken Empire - Book 1
Well, my friend was quite right. The main character of Jorg is HORRID. Wicked, evil with very, very few redeeming features. But a few chapters in - and they are very short chapters - and I was totally fascinated. Not just with Jorg, but with his band of 'brothers' as well. Makin, Nuban, Pike, Liar, Elhan as well as Gog and Golgoth. A bunch of more unsavory characters would be hard to find, but they are wonderful in their own way.
The writing itself works for me. Written in the 1st person POV of Jorg, the reading is easy and full, by which I mean it clips along quite nicely but there are some lovely turns of phrases and descriptions that put you 'on location' as it were. Clever turns of phrase like - "Brother Gains convinced Gorgoth to call a rest halt by stumbling into space, and wailing for a good ten seconds before the unseen floor convinced him to shut up." I laughed out loud reading that one. Jorg has a dry, sarcastic tone that I quite enjoy. I mentioned the quick chapters. I find this leads to a quick-paced book and the fact that most of them are around the same length, it doesn't pain my reader's brain the way some books do with their 3-page chapters followed by a 35-page chapter.
I don't know that this book would be for everyone. It's dark and violent - unrepentantly so - and there sure aren't a lot of warm fuzzies to be found. IF ANY. But if you enjoy fantasy that strays outside the norm, this is a good book for you. There are some fun surprises to be had as well - well, fun for the reader, but sometimes not fun too. *g*
Mark Lawrence has definitely captured my imagination although I may never forgive him for what happens 2/3rds of the way through the book. :)